LMU Organic Community Garden to host Meet & Greet

Published 8:40 am Thursday, January 24, 2019

HARROGATE, Tenn. — The Lincoln Memorial University (LMU) Organic Community Garden organization will open the spring growing season with a “Meet and Greet” session for new members on Feb. 18 at 4 p.m. at the garden facility on the LMU main campus in Harrogate. The organization is taking a limited number of applications for garden plots in 2019.

Open to adults and children, the organization offers individual-raised bed gardens and a large community garden where members plant, work and share in the harvest at no cost. The garden is 100 percent organic and does not utilize chemical pesticides, herbicides or synthetic fertilizers. Garden members meet every Monday at the garden center for updates and discussion, gardening education, and time for fellowship and networking. Additionally, members are encouraged to tend their beds as needed and assist on Wednesday work sessions when weather permits.

Entering its 10th growing season, the garden has yielded nearly 12,000 pounds of food. Members continue to enjoy broccoli, greens, turnips and radishes from the fall garden. In 2018, 48 families participated in the program, growing organic produce and attending educational programs. Membership includes a mix of beginner, novice and experienced gardeners.

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In addition to the raised beds and a community garden, the organization grows several varieties of plants in two green houses and utilizes two 40-foot high tunnels. The tunnels allow garden members to plant tender garden crops earlier in the season and extends harvesting by nearly 50 days at the end of the growing season.

The LMU Organic Garden facilities are on the south side of campus past the LMU-DeBusk College of Osteopathic Medicine and behind the College of Veterinary Medicine building that is currently under construction. The entrance is near the roundabout.

Meetings are held in the classroom/kitchen facility on the grounds. Classes are led by gardening experts, extension agents from the University of Kentucky and University of Tennessee and area leaders. Upcoming classes will cover topics such as pruning fruit trees, garden planning, edible and medicinal plants, sweet potato slips and heart-healthy cooking from the garden.

The mission of the LMU Organic Community Garden is to offer a place to learn about gardening, healthy eating and preparation and preservation of food in healthy ways. Initiated by the LMU Board of Trustees, the organization is self-governed by its members.

For more information about the LMU Organic Community Garden, contact Bill Clayton at organichillbilly_lmu@yahoo.com or willie.clayton@lmunet.edu or 423-441-9133.