A Bennington Garden Improves Local Food Security

IMG_2595This summer we spent some time driving through Southern Vermont to see how the community gardens were doing and to check in with local garden leaders. Here’s an update from our visit to the Morgan Spring Community Garden:

Located in the heart of a Bennington neighborhood, just down the street from the local food shelf and on city rec center land, Morgan Spring Community Garden blooms in more ways than one.  After struggling to fill the large garden space with individual gardeners, volunteer garden coordinator, Tara Schatz, did some re-thinking.  Morgan Spring already provided garden space for the local food shelf, the Kitchen Cupboard, and saw an opportunity for local not-for-profit groups to support the community’s need for greater food security and food education.  This season, about half of the 48 garden plots are used by individual gardeners and the other half used, at no charge, by local groups, including United Counseling Services, the Boy Scouts, a budding local garden education program, and the Kitchen Cupboard.

IMG_2589As a result, the garden has become a connecting point for a broader sector of the Bennington community.  So far this season: a group of Boy Scouts achieved their Compost Merit Badge by building an 8-bin, double-sided compost system for the garden (made possible through the NEGEF/VCGN/Highfields Center for Composting SEED Grant), a local Master Gardener developed a perennial garden along the garden’s fence line, and the Kitchen Cupboard continues to benefit from the 12 garden plots dedicated to providing fresh food for low-income neighbors.

Click here for the Morgan Spring Community Garden blog.

~ By Libby Weiland


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