By JODY BRADLEY
Every gardener at some point in time says to himself, “Why did I plant so many?” I asked myself that the first year I planted spaghetti squash. That questions lead to, “What am I going to do with all these.” That is when I began researching Grow-A-Row.
- provide fresh, healthy produce to those in need
- educate people of all generations about hunger and ways to help
- introduce our youth to farming and healthy eating
- cultivate tomorrow’s leaders to give back
- contribute to the sustainability of agriculture.
Cherokee’s Grow-A-Row is not that ambitious, yet. Our Cherokee Grow-A-Row mission is to
- Increase the number of growers
- Set up more distribution points.
Grow-A-Row has a simple premise. While you plant a row of cucumbers for your family, grow a row to donate to the community. When the cucumbers come in, take them to the distribution point of your choice. That’s it. There are two sites: Dora Reed Child Development and Age Link Child Development.
Recommended crops are Beans, Beets, Broccoli, Cabbage , Corn, Cucumbers, Eggplant, Onions , Peppers, Potatoes, Peas, Swiss Chard, Spaghetti squash , Butternut squash, Okra and Yellow squash.
Grow-A-Row is a great project for individuals, youth groups, churches, or community clubs. Plant, harvest, and donate the bounty of a garden to those in need. You may work with your peers to make a difference in their community while learning gardening basics and the importance of community service. With as little as one to four hours a week, you can make a difference in the lives of many Cherokee people.
You don’t have to be a farmer to Grow-A-Row. You just need a desire to serve and help others in the community. Maybe that is why God gave us the green thumbs – to feed the hungry.
The Office of the Vice Chief sponsors the Cherokee’s Grow-A-Row project which is in its third year.