as you may have seen a few weeks ago, we built and planted a bunch of container gardens for the women's group we work with, but it wasn't just drop and go! planting the boxes was just the beginning, now it's time for the real work to begin! follow-up visits to check in on the gardens, and additional training for how to best care for and harvest the vegetables.
the container gardens have many purposes. first and foremost, they can help families produce food at home, to limit grocery expenses, and give them access to vitamin-rich vegetables at their doorstep. most of the families we work with are single moms who have lots of kids to feed, and malnutrition is extremely common. so their new mini-gardens can help aid in making sure they have access to consistent food, and better nutrition.
the second purpose of the boxes are so we can have a way to continue building deeper relationships with the group of families we have been working with for the last year by going into their homes! it is an excuse to visit frequently, encourage and pray with families, and build trust.
lastly, it is a way to begin training initiatives on how to cultivate and care for a garden. once we are able to help build a foundation of successful knowledge on how to grow healthy vegetables, we can build on additional projects that moms can do at home to have food for their own households, and potentially sell for additional income.
in a perfect world, we would have shown up to each house greeted by lush, healthy container gardens bursting with beets, carrots and spinach, but... this is real life. so some were great, and others were kind of sad looking! not to be discouraged, we treated, re-planted, and set up a specific care and watering schedule with each of the families so their vegetables will grow healthy and strong.
enjoy some of the pictures of our visits below!
teaching how to water the seedlings without disturbing/dislodging the root system.
beets growing strong!
lots of sweet little garden helpers.
replanting some seeds that didn't take the first time around.
some of the boxes needed to be moved to be sure they are receiving enough sun.
teaching the entire family about how much water each of the vegetables needs daily.
taking time to chat, pray, and just get to know each other!
look at all that spinach ready to come up! this mom is already calculating how she will have to buy less at the market, and the vegetables will help her family's budget. she's wanting to plant another box to have a greater variety of foods!
this little garden helper was TOO eager to harvest the spinach, so his mom had to put up chicken wire to keep him out! gotta love that excitement over vegetables!
she's ready to harvest her spinach to eat! the great thing about spinach is you can cut it and it grows back for multiple harvests.
thank you so much for following along, we'll check back in on the progress of the boxes soon!