As another growing season draws to a close, responsible stewards of the soil take stock of their harvest’s bounty. Was it a good year? Was it successful?
How do we decide what criteria to use to answer these questions? Many uncontrollable factors are responsible for determining the final answers.
- Moisture? Enough? Too much?
- Temperature? Too hot for too long? Too cool at night?
- Storms or hail?
- Pests: critters, bugs, leaf fungus?
- Quantity: Enough to meet your needs, and enough to share?
- Quality: Was it consumable/nutritious?
These all need to be answerable questions and are legitimate concerns.
The answer to these questions for 2021 is YES! It was a good year and a successful season!
Our community support through many amazing volunteers has again exceeded expectations. Our community volunteers continue to care for those in need on many levels, including the times of the pandemic! Food pantries stayed open to serve those who struggled with food insecurity. Pantries expanded their days and hours. A new pantry opened!
Our gardeners continue to plant, grow, and share their bounty in record numbers. See our chart of data!
Are you excited to be part of these efforts? How about starting your own home garden and sharing the excess? Or, if you already garden, grow an extra row! (Even an additional plant or two!) Check out the collection sites for Up From The Earth on our Facebook page or our website.
You can also locate a food pantry to volunteer your time to help.
You can support our local Siouxland Food Bank!
Plus, remember that one dollar donated to the Food Bank of Siouxland can buy five meals for those in need! Amazing!
Lastly, THINK SPRING! Consider joining our movement to increase food security by implementing our motto: Plant, Grow, Share!
By Randy Burnight and Jenny Jorgensen
Randy is a retired dentist, Master Gardener, and founder of Up From The Earth, working to increase food security in our local area. Jenny is a retired kindergarten teacher, Master Gardener, and UFTE volunteer; both are active in other arenas in the community as well.