Our gardens are in full bloom! CSM’s new Gardener, Allie Parsons (Meet her here), has grand plans and high hopes for this season and for the future of our garden initiatives. Allie has been working tirelessly to repair, beautify, and plant our garden center, as well as assist in our partner gardens in order to produce a bountiful summer harvest. Because of our current events, food access is of high importance. With our gardens, CSM hopes to not only provide healthy food to the underserved, but also empower others to grow their own food, and allow people to experience God’s creation in a new way.
The food grown on our campus is already making an impact, as we have partnered with our new CSM resident, Grace’s Kitchen. Allie works alongside Paula Hughes, director of Grace’s Kitchen, to grow food that will fit the ministry’s menus. Food grown in the gardens is then sent directly to the kitchen, where it is cooked and served to those in need. Aquaponically-grown herbs have become great additions to any dish, and hydroponically-grown lettuces continue to make tasty sides. In our raised beds, this summer’s harvest will bring an additional crop of tomatoes, peppers, beans, peas, squash, zucchini, strawberries, blueberries and more to be utilized in this farm to table process.
Alongside our campus gardens, partner gardens in Pratt City, Avondale, and East Lake continue to plant and harvest tasty food for their communities. Just this season alone, CSM was able to distribute more than 100 tomato and pepper seedlings, as well as seeds and soil to jump start these gardens. Though the labor is intense, the Lord is providing the right people to do the rewarding work of tending His creation.
To volunteer in the gardens, please make an account through our volunteer page to see weekly opportunities.