Community Garden Kickoff April 25

March 23, 2009

TERRE HAUTE, Ind. - A two-year old Indiana State University community project is continuing to grow a sense of community while helping fight hunger.

Indiana State has provided land for expert and novice gardeners to plant in garden plots free of charge. In return, gardeners promise to tend to their plots, plant only annuals and refrain from using pesticides, herbicides and fungicides. Participants also are encouraged to donate a portion of the produce raised to the food pantry of their choice.

"Given the large numbers of people relying on food pantries these days we are really encouraging our participants to help our local charities," said Nancy Brattain-Rogers, director of Indiana State's Center for Public Service and Community Engagement.

Participants will gather Saturday, April 25 from 10 a.m. to noon to learn gardening basics and begin work on their plots.

Rogers hopes to offer expert gardening advice through the help of volunteers and conduct weekly children's programs throughout the summer.

"The project is multi-faceted," she said. "There are educational, social and physical fitness benefits for individuals as well as our community."

According to Andrew Conner, director of Downtown Terre Haute, Inc., there will be three sizes of plots available to gardeners -- 10 feet by 10 feet, 15 feet by 15 feet and 20 feet by 20 feet. More than 100 plots are available for the garden's growing season, which runs from April 25 to Oct. 3. Garden plots are still available to individuals, families and organizations, Conner added.

The garden, located at 217 N. 11th Street, is a collaborative effort by Indiana State's Facilities Management, the Center for Public Service and Community Engagement and several community partners including Purdue Extension, Sisters of Providence, White Violet Center, Catholic Charities of Terre Haute, Downtown Terre Haute, Inc., Terre Haute Master Gardeners and the City of Terre Haute.

For more information about the Community Garden project or to reserve a plot, call 812-237-2334 or send an email to disbell@indstate.edu.

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Contact: Nancy Rogers, Center for Public Service and Community Engagement, (812) 237-2334 or nancyrogers@indstate.edu

Writer: Paula Meyer, ISU Communications & Marketing, (812) 237-3783 or paula.meyer@indstate.edu