Greetings from the Urban Demonstration Garden - Capital Area Food Bank
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Greetings from the Urban Demonstration Garden

By Katelynn-Marie Griner July 1, 2015

garden-picsThis week, we are enjoying berries, eggplant, radishes, nasturtiums, peppers, beets, and collards from our Urban Demonstration Garden.
Stay tuned for cherry tomatoes, yellow zucchini, broccoli, cucumber and onion. These veggies should be ready the first week of July!
Thanks to the team that worked so hard on the Produce Guides, the Food Bank will be distributing and teaching how to prepare eggplants to our food assistance partners.
Summer is a very productive time for annual plants, but perennials also experience times of productivity and change in these warm months. Strawberries fruit early (in May) and spend the hottest part of the summer preparing for next year’s fruit. They grow extra stems, called runners that grow roots and become fruit-bearing crowns by next year.
Container Garden
The container garden has also experienced a transition. The larger containers now house the taller variety of blueberries, demonstrating how little dirt is needed to grow delicious blueberries. Also growing in containers are tomatoes, beets, kale, marigolds and asparagus. While it isn’t the most traditional way to grow food, containers offer many benefits to growers.

  • Allow the grower to plant anywhere, like a balcony, rooftop, parking spot, stoop, or sunny windowsill.
  • Cost less by using less dirt and dirt amendments. In containers, the grower only uses the amount of dirt need for that plant, not an excess of dirt to fill a certain space. By using potting soil or compost to fill the container, the grower doesn’t have to add extra nutrients to the soil.
  • Can be moved to suit the plant’s sun and heat needs, to protect the plant from pests and weather, and to a new home for growers who rent or move.
  • Are a truly no-digging option for gardens because they naturally keep away weeds. This makes containers a great option for those without the time or ability to tend to a larger garden.

Containers are planted just like the traditional beds. Just pick a container, pour in some good dirt, and plant your favorite flower or veggie. It’s an easy and productive way to grow plants that the garden uses it as one of the gardening method demonstrations.
This week, the garden team is continuing to harvest, weed, and plant as well as train all the climbing vegetables to grow upward. The bean, tomato, and cucumber beds are all getting revamped this week with stakes, ties, trellises, and other contraptions to encourage the plants to climb vertically instead of splaying out in the dirt. Vertical growing is just another way that the garden works to grow more food in a smaller space.
Come Volunteer
Stop by our garden sometime to see the different methods we demonstrate of gardening. To learn more about the CAFB garden or want to volunteer contact Katelynn-Marie Griner at