DCGP offers Saturday gardening workshops

Margaret Wilbourne

Helping to grow a love of gardening throughout the community has always been the mission of local non-profit organization Druid City Garden Project. Since its creation in 2010, the group has organized volunteer efforts, school gardens and elementary education programs.

The DCGP is now taking root beyond the crosswalk with its new community garden workshop series. DCGP director Lindsay Turner said the move was important in furthering the impact of the program.

“All of our educational outreaches have been focused on elementary students, so we wanted to branch out and provide education about organic gardening to the wider communities,” Turner said. “We thought Saturday morning workshops would be a great way to do that.”

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The monthly series will feature a different theme for each workshop, which will be held outdoors. Topics will range from organic farming to backyard composting and propagation techniques. The cost for each varies from $20-$25, with a $10 discount for students.

“The workshop fee covers all supplies needed, but [participants] might want to bring a water bottle, a hat and sunblock,” Turner said. “Other than that, just bring yourself.”

Because community is a fundamental aspect of the entire project, Turner said she hopes to bring together a diverse group, which is important in order to create the popular farm-to-table concept DCGP strives to nurture.

“We [at DCGP] think in order to build a healthy food system, it takes a lot of components, and one of those components is home gardens,” Turner said. “They are a wonderful way to allow residents to connect with their food and understand where [it] comes from. It’s important to focus on the home gardener and how [they can] empower themselves to create that food system.”

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Alliemarie Humphries, a senior majoring in English and minoring in journalism and nonprofit community gardening, has a long history of working with DCGP. She said she respects the importance of self-knowledge when it comes to food.

“[Gardening] gives people a chance to learn how to make their own food instead of just going to the grocery store,” Humphries said.

She said she feels the workshop series is a great way to dip a toe into what seems to be a complicated hobby.

“The workshops will be really good as far as exposing people to new things – students from out of state probably have never seen a garden outside of a window,” Humphries said. “For the people who say, ‘Oh I don’t have a green thumb’, it’s actually a really easy thing, and they can teach you the basics no matter the scale of what you want to accomplish.”

“[These workshops] are a great introduction to gardening and a really positive way to become involved in the community,” Humphries said.

The workshop series will take place at University Place Elementary School, located on 1st Avenue. More information can be found at druidcitygardenproject.org. Organic Farming 101 will be held Saturday from 10 to 11:30 a.m.

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