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Workshops kick off community garden season

staff report • Mar 7, 2013 at 8:26 AM

KINGSPORT — Members of the East Tennessee Master Gardner’s Society will conduct community workshops from 10 a.m. to noon and from 1 to 3 p.m., Saturday, March 9, at the Harvest of Hope Community Garden, 130 W. Charlemont Ave., downtown Kingsport.

The event will kick off Harvest of Hope Community Garden’s third year of teaching people how to construct raised bed gardens, how to grow healthy foods, and the importance of eating healthy.

The first session, from 10 a.m. to noon, will demonstrate how to construct a raised bed garden using recycled materials. The second session, from 1 to 3 p.m., will emphasize the most effective methods for planting early spring vegetables.

Those who attend both sessions will be eligible for a drawing of a raised bed garden.

At Harvest of Hope Community Garden, planting beds are assigned each growing season. Some of the beds are wheelchair-accessible and child friendly. Those interested in securing a bed for the 2013 growing season are encouraged to call the United Way of Greater Kingsport at (423) 378-3409, ext. 16.

Master Gardner Doug Hilton is the chief volunteer at Harvest of Hope Community Garden. He is working with others in the community to establish community and school gardens based on Harvest of Hope’s model. On Tuesday, March 12 and Thursday, March 21, Doug Hilton will partner with Keep Kingsport Beautiful and local school teachers to demonstrate how gardens can benefit communities and school children.

Harvest of Hope Community Garden was created in 2011 by the United Way of Greater Kingsport’s Safety and Stability Vision Council to help address the availability of healthy food in the community.

The garden is a partnership with United Way, AARP, First Presbyterian Church, the city of Kingsport, UT Extension Office and the East Tennessee Master Gardner’s Society.

Individuals and families work together to maintain the community garden and share fresh produce with several local food kitchens and pantries, such as Salvation Army, Meals on Wheels and the Kitchen of Hope.

For more information about Harvest of Hope Community Garden, visit the garden blog at www.hohkingsport.blogspot.com or United Way of Greater Kingsport at www.uwaykpt.org.

For a complete list of area food pantries that may benefit from Harvest of Hope, visit www.feedkingsport.org.

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