A few weeks ago I found my Spring 2011 edition of The Herb Quarterly waiting ever so patiently for me in my mailbox. I was so excited! I sat down and began to thumb through the pages to get a general overview of the exciting things I was about to learn and as I turned to the last page and began to read, an overwhelming sense of urgency came across me. You see, this article was not just your everyday Garden "How-to", it was a beautiful piece on a non-profit organization by the name of Hope Outreach and I would love to share with you the important information I took from this.
Hope Outreach is a nondenominational nonprofit in Oklahoma who is dedicated to helping disadvantaged people become self-sufficient. Five years ago they opened a day care center for the homeless population of Enid, OK. But providing housing and food for these people just wasn't enough for them so they turned a city block into an herb, vegetable, small fruit, and flower garden called Faith Farm, and encouraged the homeless to work in the garden as they also wanted to empower these individuals emotionally and psychologically. Faith Farm director Kate Morrison says their mission is to teach skills and repair self-esteem through teamwork and social interaction. She is quoted as saying, "So much of building self-esteem is cause and effect, and a garden provides a way to show that. If you water and care for something, you will have a harvest. For people who haven't had a lot of positive reinforcement in their lives, a garden shows them that they can have success."
I finished reading the article and I thought to myself, “WOW! What a positive and creative way to help those less fortunate and to not only help them, but to help the community”.
That is why I am so passionate about being a part of Urban Seeds.
We have such a drive for educating Evansville on the positive impact of teaching sustainable living, organic gardening, recycling and healthy eating.
We have chosen to focus our efforts on the city’s school age children as we believe that setting a good foundation in their sense of health and well-being, their environment and their overall self confidence will not only build a healthier, more informed adult but cultivate a healthier community.
We are embarking on an incredible journey and would love for you to come along for the ride!
Urban Seeds has been awarded a grant by the Welborn Baptist Foundation and our goal is to increase access, awareness and utilization of locally grown and prepared food options by providing routine educational opportunities to youth and their families related to container, urban, and community gardening, fruit tree and bush care and cooking classes, implement a Garden to School pilot in collaboration with two area schools through their cafeteria and curriculum/extracurricular programming, initiate Farm to School discussions between local growers and area schools and serve as a technical advisor to the development and sustainability of the Glenwood Farmers Market project.
If you would like to find out more information about our project and how you can get involved, please visit our website at www.urbanseeds.org
Peas and Love,
The basics of composting
are simple. Most people know they can compost fruit and vegetable peels, leaves, and grass clippings. But what about that tea bag you used this morning? Or the fur that collects in the brush when you groom your cat?
The following list is meant to get you thinking about your compost
possibilities. Not every item on the list is for everyone, and that's fine. Imagine how much trash
we could prevent from going into the landfills if each of us just decided to compost a few more things.
Here are 75 ideas to get you started.
From the Kitchen
- Coffee grounds and filters
- Tea bags
- Used paper napkins
- Pizza boxes, ripped into smaller pieces
- Paper bags, either ripped or balled up
- The crumbs you sweep off of the counters and floors
- Plain cooked pasta
- Plain cooked rice
- Stale bread
- Paper towel rolls
- Stale saltine crackers
- Stale cereal
- Used paper plates (as long as they don't have a waxy coating)
- Cellophane bags (be sure it's really Cellophane and not just clear plastic -- there's a difference.)
- Nut shells (except for walnut shells, which can be toxic to plants)
- Old herbs and spices
- Stale pretzels
- Pizza crusts
- Cereal boxes (tear them into smaller pieces first)
- Wine corks
- Moldy cheese
- Melted ice cream
- Old jelly, jam, or preserves
- Stale beer and wine
- Paper egg cartons
- Bamboo skewers
- Paper cupcake or muffin cups
From the Bathroom
- Used facial tissues
- Hair from your hairbrush
- Toilet paper rolls
- Old loofahs
- Nail clippings
- 100% cotton cotton balls
- Cotton swabs made from 100% cotton and cardboard (not plastic) sticks
It might be a good idea to bury these items in your pile. Just sayin'.
- Cardboard tampon applicators
- Latex condoms
From the Laundry Room
- Dryer lint
- Old/stained cotton clothing -- rip or cut it into smaller pieces
- Old wool clothing -- rip or cut it into smaller pieces
From the Office
- Bills and other documents you've shredded
- Envelopes (minus the plastic window)
- Pencil shavings
- Sticky notes
- Business cards (as long as they're not glossy)
Around the House
- Contents of your vacuum cleaner bag or canister
- Newspapers (shredded or torn into smaller pieces)
- Subscription cards from magazines
- Leaves trimmed from houseplants
- Dead houseplants and their soil
- Flowers from floral arrangements
- Natural potpourri
- Used matches
- Ashes from the fireplace, barbecue grill, or outdoor fire pit
Party and Holiday Supplies
- Wrapping paper rolls
- Paper table cloths
- Crepe paper streamers
- Latex balloons
- Jack o' Lanterns
- Those hay bales you used as part of your outdoor fall decor
- Natural holiday wreaths
- Your Christmas tree -- chop it up with some pruners first (or use a wood chipper, if you have one)
- Evergreen garlands
- Fur from the dog or cat brush
- Droppings and bedding from your rabbit/gerbil/hamsters, etc.
- Newspaper/droppings from the bottom of the bird cage
- Alfalfa hay or pellets (usually fed to rabbits)
- Rawhide dog chews
- Fish food
- Dry dog or cat food
I know that the longer I've had a compost pile
, the more likely I've been to take a second look at something I was preparing to throw in the trash. "Hmm. Can I compost this?" is a frequent question in my house. And, as you can see, it's surprising how often you can answer "Yes!"
(By Samantha, selected from Planet Green Blog)
February 10, 2011 MeetingPlease mark this on your calendar as this meeting will be full of information that you will not want to miss! Please be thinking about what you feel you can contribute to our organization or if you know someone who would be interested in holding a position. We will be discussing this in further detail at the meeting as well. This meeting is going to be jam-packed with information so come prepared with your notebook and pen! We are requesting an RSVP to this meeting so we know how many to plan for. You may RSVP to this meeting by emailing us at email@example.com.
Educational Learning SeriesWe are very pleased to announce that we will be starting a monthly Educational Learning Series beginning in February 2011. These classes will range from how to start seeds indoors, building a raised garden bed, making your own baby food to cooking classes and more! These classes will be held at Central Library on Saturday mornings from 9am-11am. Please visit our webpage at www.urbanseeds.org to get in-depth information and to RSVP. If you hav
e a specific request or would like to teach a class, please email us and we will do our best to accommodate. March Meeting
Our next organizational meeting will be held at Oaklyn Branch Library on Thursday, March 24th at 6:30pm. Please plan to attend as we will be discussing Board nominations, our upcoming Garden Party and Fundraiser and many more items on the agenda. Please RSVP for this meeting by emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org