Greenthumbs Needed To Grow Food For The Needy

By Mike Fourcher | Thursday, May 12, 2011

Les Kniskern and Neighborhood Nutrition Centers (NNC) is looking for a few Lincoln Square families to grow some food in their backyards.

“We encourage people to grow in their back yards, and donate a portion of their crops (one square foot) to helping feed families that have economic barriers to fresh food,” Kniskern said in an email.

Tomatoes, Basil, Climbing Cucumbers, Radish, Squash. Credit: Flickr/roman.petruniak.

The not-for-profit organization encourages community gardeners to grow a square foot of a single food crop. The produce is then used for cooking demonstrations and tastings for lower-income families who are also provided with coupons for local farmers’ markets.

NNC is looking for people to grow tomatoes cucumbers, carrots, celery, garlic, onions, beans lettuces or squash, with a special emphasis on swiss chard, eggplant and radishes.

“One important aspect of growing at home is, of course, non-contaminated soil, said Kniskern. “NNC will provide a limited number of soil tests to participants who wish to donate food crops.”

“We have a community garden plot at the Lincoln Square Community Garden, and have a commitment for two additional garden beds at Waters Elementary School.”

Gardeners interested in participating in the program can contact Kniskern at les@nncenters.org or at (773) 339-5915.

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