Lehigh/Northampton Counties win Community Service Award

The Barn's Community Garden sponsored by Master Gardeners in Lehigh and Northampton Counties wins first place Search for Excellence Award in the Community Service category.

Enjoying the harvest!

Enjoying the harvest!

What began as a single garden plot in 2010 with three Master Gardeners and 40 volunteers from the Barn worshipping community has grown substantially.  Last year, four Master Gardeners worked with four worshipping communities and 120 volunteers in five garden plots to raise 3000 lbs. of produce. Sensing need for continued leadership because of the increasing growth of the program, there are now twelve Master Gardeners signed on to work potentially eight gardens.

The Barn CommUnity Garden uses organic farming techniques, succession planting/ crop rotation, vertical gardening, interplanting , and emphasizes teaching new and veteran gardeners. Core values of community building, social outreach and desire to help address local food insecurity are all important to program initiatives and planning.  An annual leadership meeting with representatives from each of the involved volunteer pools is held in fall to help steer the following year’s initiatives. In 2016, the new initiatives include involving veterans, Hindus and youth of different faith communities to help “plant” the idea of commonality instead of differences; hence, building bridges instead of burning them with violence