New Food Bank Garden Project for Port Townsend and Jefferson County
Written by Lys B, Port Townsend Food Bank Gardens Leadership Team
The first Port Townsend Food Bank Garden was established in March, 2012, with a grant from the Master Gardner Foundation of Jefferson County to the JCFBA (Jefferson County Food Bank Association). The grant provided for a hoop house situated at Mountain View Commons on garden space transferred from the YMCA that is designated to grow food specifically for the Port Townsend Food Bank.
During the summer of 2012, produce was also furnished for the food bank from a garden located at Port Townsend High School and seeded by high school student volunteers. Prior to the PT Food Bank Gardens Project, the vegetables from this garden were rarely harvested since students were out of school in the summertime. Thanks to the project, volunteers delivered a total of 780 pounds of fresh, organic food to the PT Food Bank from both gardens that year.
The 2013 growing season saw the PTFB Gardens Project expand to three gardens, including additional space at the Quimper Grange Garden. Thanks to a generous grant from the Jefferson County Master Gardener’s Foundation to the Port Townsend High School, the size of this garden doubled in order to grow more food. It now has 5000 square feet and produced 1600 pounds of organic vegetables for the PT Food Bank last year.
Food Bank Garden volunteers work to renew garden beds at the Quimper Grange Garden in March, 2014.
Two other gardening efforts furnish produce for Jefferson County food banks. The Swan Valley Community Garden in Port Hadlock has several beds dedicated to the Tri – Area Food Bank and the Quilcene Demonstration Garden has dedicated a large space for the Quilcene Food Bank. The Quilcene Demontration Garden is run under the able leadership of master gardeners Juanita Thomas and Anita McCue. Vegetable gardening classes are offered every Monday at noon at the Quilcene garden.
Volunteers celebrate hoop house creation