Monday, September 10, 2012

Harvest of News - September, 2012 Issue

 Harvest of  News

In this Issue:
  • Welcome to new CI's
  • Special Offer for Fall Seed Kit / SFG partners with Jung Seed Co, WI, by Mel Bartholomew
  • A Brief History of J.W. Seed Company and Why SFGF Has Chosen to Partner with Them - by Victoria Boudman
  • Mel's Mail: Letter from Josh Greene, IL, Letter from David Clark, SC
  • San Diego, CA, Symposium w/ Mel Bartholomew & Jim Teahan
  • SFGF News Update
  • Meriel Cromarty Pairs SFG with Gourmet Dining in Ontario, Canada
  • Incredible Edibles Symposium with Mel & Victoria at University of Tennessee in Knoxville - Be There & Be Proud to Be Square!
  • Belinda Jensen – Living the SFG Life in Pleasant Grove, UT - by Sally Odum
  • Upcoming Events
Suzie Tice, Helmville, MT, SFG
Hank Belopavlovich, CI, Austin, TX: Texas SFG event
Beuna Tomalino, CI: SFG Events, Utah & Australia
Mick Manfield, CI, Lockport, Manitoba, Canada SFG photos
Laurie Carlock, Peace Garden, San Diego, California

Welcome to New Certified Instructors

Meriel Cromarty, Ontario, Canada (Read Meriel's story below)

Suzie Tice of Helmville, MT (See Suzie's SFG below)

Laurie Carlock, San Diego, CA (See Laurie's Peace Garden Photo below)

This lovely SFG belongs to Suzie Tice, new SFG CI

Are You Ready To Plant a Fall Garden?

Well, I’ve got just the thing for you.  People ask me:
  • What should I plant?
  •  Where should I plant?
  • Why should I plant?
  • When should I plant?
I’ve put all the answers into one box for you.  We are creating a new relationship with a major seed company, Jung Seed from Wisconsin. They are a 100-year-old, family-owned seed company.  Victoria Boudman, our foundation's CEO, met their President, Dick Zondag, at a conference they were both speaking at and Dick said, "We want to help the SFG Foundation.”  So, working together, we have designed a special SFG Fall Garden seed kit and they have agreed to give any Square Foot Gardener a special welcome to Jung Seed Co. special discount for the kit. This special offer is going to be good for a limited time, so get ready to act NOW!

I’ve done all of the hard work for you and picked the best varieties for growing anywhere in the country and I’ve laid out a 4×4 detailed map of where to plant each crop.  The kit consists of 12 full packets of the best premium quality seeds.  With your order, you will receive a planned layout for planting 16 square feet for a Thanksgiving salad.  You not only get a deep discount on the regular list price for this special SFG kit…you’re going to get  FREE SHIPPING AND HANDLING.    Yes, FREE!

Days to Harvest
List Price
Cherry Belle
Swiss Chard
Loose Leaf Lettuce
Red Fire
Loose Leaf Lettuce
Black Seeded Simpson
Ruby Queen
Bibb Lettuce
Super Sugar Snap

If you’ll notice -- that’s $24 for 12 packets of seeds, PLUS normally $5 shipping and handling, which comes to almost $30!  But with the special Square Foot Gardener discount you’ll have enough for at least FIVE years of fall gardens, and all for only $19.95 – with FREE shipping!

I know you might be thinking, “I live in a far off place in the country!” but these varieties will work for Florida to Washington…and everywhere in between.  I will show you how to space your plants, what squares to plant in, and how to store your seeds for the next year.

Just to give you an idea of how much cheaper growing your own food is, especially with this discount, here’s some simple math:

Cost of seeds is $19.95, and they will last 5 years.  5 years * 16 squares (you’ll plant 2 squares of some varieties) = 80 squares for $20…that’s ONLY 25¢ per square foot.

Mel’s Magic Penny Chart

Price per Square
Number of Plants
Price per Plant
1.5¢ per carrot
Lettuce Heads
6¢ per head
3¢ per bunch

How can you lose with a deal like this?  Answer: YOU CAN’T!

How to Order Your SFG Fall Gardening Kit
Visit this link or call Jung Seed Company at 1-800-247-5864 and request item SFG01x to order the special SFG Fall seed kit at $19.95 with free shipping. You will need the coupon code MELSFG59 to get free shipping on your order. This offer is good through September 17, 2012. Please do not share that code with any row gardeners you might know!

When you place your order, you will receive a chart of what, where, and when to plant!  Jung will graciously donate 5% to the SFG Foundation for our humanitarian projects around the world.

But wait – that's not all! Jung Seed Company will donate 5% on ANY order placed or processed through the code (MELSFG59) or our website portals -- not just the SFG special fall seed kit. So if you need any other seeds or products – it's is a great time to buy and help Square Foot Gardening Foundation at the same time!

Happy Gardening, Mel

PS - Please note that Jung Seed Company does not ship outside USA. We regret this inconvenience for our international friends!

A Brief History of J.W. Jung Seed Company
& Why We've Chosen to Partner with Them

By Victoria Boudman

After launching our “Fall Seed Kit Deal” with Jung Seed Company, we started hearing from worried customers and Square Foot Gardeners saying they had seen postings that Jung was buying GMO seeds from Monsanto.
Nathan Zondag of Jung Seed Company called and gave me the following background to pass on: 
A person had written an article to Mother Earth News with the same accusations - Mother Earth printed the article without checking the facts. The claim was that Shumway was owned by a Monsanto-owned company, which is untrue.  It is owned by J. W. Jung Seed Company, and this company is still owned by the originating family.
There are two companies in Randolph that have Jung Seed in their name. One, Jung Seed Genetics, is owned by ASI, a company owned by Monsanto, and sells farm seed through a network of farm seed dealers. The other, which is the company SFG is partnering with, is J.W. Jung Seed Company.  It is still owned by the originating family. They sell garden seeds and products for home gardens through mail order catalogs and garden centers based in Wisconsin. These two companies were one company until the mid-90's when the business was divided into two separate companies: the farm seed company and the garden products company.
The Jung Seed Company and all the 8 catalogs are completely run by the family that started 4 generations ago. They DO NOT sell any GMOs. They are very proud of their seed heritage, and stand behind their brand and seeds absolutely. They were dragged through the mud by someone who did not do the research, and accused of things that are untrue.
I have personally met the staff and family that owns Jung. They are kind and good people. They look after their company and do many things the old-fashioned way - the way it started - on the land behind the buildings they work in – in the ground. They plant seeds - they harvest seeds - they split the bulbs they grow in the fields they sow.
They are the number one employer for the town of Randolph WI - a town I visited and found so charming.  The people who work there are hard-working Americans.  Jung is one of the best companies I have seen.  They dig in and get their hands dirty.
We at SFG support them - our new partners - and want to share what we have seen, and let you know why we choose to work with them.
Dick Zondag is the 3rd generation - his son Nathan is the 4th.  They are honest, and they are one of the last mail order gardening companies that are still owned by the family that started the business.
Happy Gardening,
Victoria Boudman


  Mel's Mail
"Hi Mel!
I didn't know if you knew, but at the 4-H fair this year, I entered a poster about my SFG Herb-of-the-Year Garden. For county fair, I won First Place, Best of Show, and Grand Champion -- and my project was selected to go to the state fair. At the state fair, I received a Ribbon for Excellence (everyone who makes it past county gets this ribbon) and I also received Superior Ribbon (very few win this). Below is a photo of me at the 2012 Illinois State Fair. " ~Josh Greene

"SFGs make an excellent fair project!" ~Josh Greene (The World's First Jr. SFG Instructor)
Now read Mel's reply:
"Josh, there seems to be no end of your gardening activities.  I am very proud of you and all you have accomplished these past years.  I have been thinking more and more about your age group and how can we get in touch with them.What part of SFG would appeal to them?  Helping others - any type of humanitarian project - a small home business selling their harvest-  community service- teaching younger students how to SFG, of course Scouts and FFA, but that doesn't reach the majority. Anything we can do or say on the social networks that would be cool or attract their attention?  What are your thoughts on that? I would appreciate any ideas you could send me. Congratulations again and Happy Gardening.   ~Mel "

David's Letter: "I would love to have an opportunity to share with your readers the amazing impact you are having on the lives of people in South Carolina. I don't think many Square Foot Gardeners realize how the heart and spirit of your work as a nonprofit has impacted our state. The presence of the SFG foundation is being felt from the timberlands and saw mills, to the shelters for the homeless, to the trade schools and colleges for the financially disadvantaged. Thank you for investing in our local communities. We especially thank you for wonderful people like Victoria, who exemplify what Square Foot Gardening and nonprofit corporations in America are all about. Thanks for the good things you are doing!" ~ David Clark 

Mel's Reply: "Thank you so very much David for your wonderful letter. I will share that with everyone here at our Foundation and even all those connected with SFG. You are very generous with your appreciation and that encourages us all to help even more, way beyond what you can imagine. Just think if this country could get all the people that are unemployed to volunteer just a few hours a week to help all the nonprofits do their thing, what a wonderful world this would be. And just think if we could educate and encourage all of our fans to buy their SFG products from our website, we would be able to have even more work for your team of woodworkers rather than all that money and orders going to big box stores and large corporations, especially those box companies that import from China. We could provide more immediate help to those in need as they rebuild their lives. And what a great workforce that would create. Thank you again, your letter means the world to us all." Happy Gardening, Mel
Join Mel Bartholomew & Jim Teahan for a Once-in-a-Lifetime Symposium in Renowned Balboa Park, San Diego, CA – October 11-13th

Contact Information                                                  FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Cynthia Ruybal
Cell 858-729-8992

Taught by Mel Bartholomew, His Only Symposium in 2012

Mel Bartholomew, author of the largest selling gardening book ever “All New Square Foot Gardening” and seen on his PBS series “Square Foot Gardening” is teaching a special Instructors’ 3 day Certification Course in San Diego’s Balboa Park Oct.11- 13, 2012 for those who want to qualify for teaching  the SFG method.

The Symposium is not a "how to SFG course" for beginners but a “how to teach SFG” Symposium.  Mel and the Square Foot Gardening Foundation Staff and guests will teach you how to teach others to spread the method and combat hunger.  Required reading: All New Square Foot Gardening Book and previous SFG experience.   

The primary purpose is to teach San Diego how to garden with 90% less water than traditional gardening. Other benefits of SFG include no chemicals, no weeding, no tools, and 80% less space. At the Symposium you will learn the therapeutic value of gardening, how the Square Foot Gardening Foundation combats World Hunger, how to grow your own business, and the value of family gardening and community building.

Nonprofit staff discounts available. For info & tickets, please visit 

For more information about this topic or to schedule an interview with the SFG San Diego Coordinator, Cynthia Ruybal, please call 858-729-8992 or email

Already certified? Please pass along this press release in your area! 

RECENT SFG EVENT IN TEXAS, with Certified Instructor, Hank Belopavlovich

Square Foot Garden Certified Instructor and Master Gardener from Williamson County, Texas, Hank Belopavlovich, sent us these photos. It was a very successful in-store SFG event with 55 attendees. Hank was the speaker and special guest.


Square Foot Gardening Foundation News Updates

The Grand Opening of SFGF headquarters in Columbia, South Carolina, was a great success. Thanks to everyone who stopped by. Victoria and the S.C. team had a great time meeting local officials and all of the SFG enthusiasts and local business leaders. We would like to say thank you to all who made our transition from Utah to South Carolina a success – and thank you for your patience and understanding over the summer. Moving was a big job, but one that is now finished and behind us. Our SFGF retail store is open for business, and we are adding to the line-up of products and offerings as quickly as possible.

We're very excited about the new partnership with Jung Seed Company of Wisconsin. See our special offer for Mel's hand-picked fall garden seeds at a reduced price in this newsletter. Remember, the fall seed kit is a limited time offer (ends September 17th), and Jung Seed Company will donate 5% of these sales to SFGF! Also, Jung will donate 5% of sales to SFGF for ANY order, any product(s) on their website that are placed through our website portals or with the special code (MELSFG59)Read more or place your order. Please remember to place any future order(s) with Jung Seed Company through our website portals or use the code!

The new Online Certification Class (OCC) is available for purchase on our website. As most of you know already, Belinda Jensen and Amie Guyette Hall will be teaching these classes. Read more.

Remember to send your events, stories & photos to so we can put them on our website calendar and in the newsletter. Our website gets thousands of visits per month -- this is a great opportunity for us to help you market your events!

Meriel Cromarty of Ontario, Canada, Pairs SFG with Gourmet Dining

Hailing from Alisa Craig, Ontario, Canada, Meriel Cromarty is a Farm Business Management graduate and has worked in the agriculture and agri-food industries for over 25 years.  As a consultant with Forktrend Foods Inc., she developed certified organic, value-added products, retail-ready products, and local food initiative projects.  She is the current chair of FoodNet Ontario, and has volunteered at the regional level with Sustain Ontario, South West Ontario Local Food Connections, and the City of London Ontario Food Charter Committee.

Now a certified SFG Instructor, Meriel will train classes in a Square Foot Gardening Program at London Training Centre located in London, Ontario. The organization runs an intensive, three-week training program that features cooking with local and in-season produce, food industry certification training, and hands-on gardening that culminates in the production of a three-course gourmet dinner paired with Ontario wines served to 50 culinary clients.  London Training Centre has produced a video clip of their program that is part of the series of 10 Good Food Ideas for OntarioSee the video.

University of Tennessee Gardens Fall Symposium: Incredible Edibles

Don't miss this opportunity to learn from the founder of Square Foot Gardening, mingle with gardening pros, get cutting-edge info, and enjoy a fine farm-to-table dinner! Be There & Be Proud to BE SQUARE!

Square Foot Garden    
Harvest Moon Farm-to-Table Dinner
Friday, September 28, 6-8:30 p.m.

Fall Symposium: Incredible Edibles
Saturday, September 29, 8 a.m.-4 p.m.

Edible Plant Sale
Saturday, September 29, 4-6 p.m.

Mel Bartholomew and Victoria Boudman, Founder and CEO of Square Foot Gardening, will be our keynote speakers for this year's Fall Symposium: Incredible Edibles. Come and learn Mel's revolutionary techniques and also enjoy additional workshops from local gardening experts. 
* This is not a Square Foot Gardening teacher certification symposium. 
This event is expected to have a huge turn out so purchase your tickets today. Registered individuals will get at 10% discount at the edible plant sale.
Schedule for the Symposium
Friday, September 28 - Harvest Moon Farm-to-Table Dinner
Time: 6-8:30 p.m.

Join Mel Bartholomew and Victoria Boudman, Founder and CEO of Square Foot Gardening, for a family style dinner featuring local and regional fare prepared by chef Simon Hall of Creative Catering of Knoxville, with entertainment by Johnson Swingtet. Refreshment hour beginning at 6 with dinner at 7pm.
Saturday, September 29 - Symposium
Time: 8 a.m. - 4 p.m.
8:15-8:45 - Check-in, book signing, welcome

9:00 - Mel Bartholomew & Victoria Boudman - Square Foot Gardening 101

10:00 - Paul BaxterBest small fruits for the region and how to grow them
Learn blueberry basics such as which type to choose, growing requirements and pollinator groups. Also get tips and tricks for other fruits like muscadines, grapes, arctic kiwi, cane fruits and even a few varieties to experiment with.

Building a garden is like building a home. Without a good foundation, the whole thing can crumble. Not all gardening spaces are created equally, especially in East Tennessee. When building a garden, there are three very important aspects to consider: location, terrain, and soil.
12:00 - Lunch (included in cost of ticket) - with keynote from Dr. Susan Hamilton, Director of the UT Gardens

1:00 - John Tullock - You Can't Grow That! 
Learn about food plants you never dreamed you could grow in Tennessee; unusual edible ornaments, tricking tropical food plants, how to grow and what to do with foods like prickly pear, saffron, ginger and bananas.

2:00 - Dr. Annette Wszelaki -Accentuate the Positive and Eliminate the Negative: Beneficial Insects
 for Pest Management in Organic Systems
3:00 - Mel Bartholomew & Victoria Boudman - Square Foot Gardening 102 

Saturday, September 20 - Edible Plant Sale
Time: 4-6 p.m.  

Attendees of the dinner or symposium will receive a 10% discount at the edible plant sale. Space is limited. Get your tickets today!
Purchase Tickets Here.

Belinda Jensen – Living the SFG Life in Pleasant Grove, Utah

Most people who are affiliated with Square Foot Gardening Foundation (SFGF) know Belinda Jensen as the Instructor Specialist for SFGF. In that capacity, she helps aspiring individuals to become certified as instructors. But Belinda is also a certified Square Foot Gardening (SFG) instructor herself.  In addition to her foundation duties, Belinda is owner of her own garden business, Home Gardens to Go LLC ( 

Personally trained by Mel Bartholomew, Belinda is not shy in front of a camera or an audience, because she knows "her stuff." She has more than 20 years of gardening experience. Belinda has done many interviews over the years and she's recorded instructional videos on SFG. She does everything from teaching classes, to installing gardens, selling SFG products as a licensed partner, giving demonstrations, communicating with and assisting other certified instructors. Along with Radio Host/Health Coach/Certified Instructor Amie Guyette Hall, Belinda will be training students in SFGF's new online classes.
"I really enjoy working from home and communicating with the certified instructors who are a special group of people. They are the salt of the earth, grounded and rooted in all that is good about America and the world." According to Belinda, the SFG life is a wonderful, fulfilling lifestyle, and she added, "Anyone can do this. It's easy to learn the SFG method and become certified. There are three ways to become certified now – Online Certification Classes, Home Study Course, or attending a 3-Day Symposium."
 Belinda has served as a volunteer singer with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir for 11 years. Mel is a big fan and met Belinda through the choir. But she proudly calls her most important position, "Family Manager."  Said Belinda, "My greatest achievement is being a wife to Barry Jensen for 30+ years and a mother of six children."


Certified SFG Instructor Beuna Tomalino sent us the following photos of her classes.

Square Foot Garden class and tables - Legacy House of Bountiful, Assisted Living Center, Bountiful, Utah, and Tables built by the Centerville, Utah, Home Depot associates. Photo: a few students from the class who helped plant tomatoes in their first Square Foot Garden.  Class taught by Beuna Tomalino

Square Foot Gardening class, Anchorage, Alaska - at Home Depot, taught by Beuna Tomalino

Beuna's Website & Blogs: - join for free gardening tips - herb gardening - edible landscaping

The following photos were sent in by Certified Instructor, Mick Manfield. These are photos of his Square Foot Gardens in Lockport, Manitoba, Canada. Lockport is located just north of Winnipeg.


Laurie Carlock, Certified SFG Instructor, sent us this photo of the awesome new sign for Peace Garden, San Diego, CA.

Upcoming Events

2012 University of Tennessee Fall Symposium: Incredible Edibles w/ Mel and Victoria
When:  Friday, Sept. 28, 6-9 p.m., Farm-to-table dinner
Saturday, Sept. 29, 8a.m.-4p.m., Symposium; 4-6p.m., Edible Plant Sale
Where:  University of Tennessee, Knoxville, Tennessee (map)
Description:  SAVE THE DATES Join Mel and Victoria in Tennessee for this Two-Day Incredible Edibles Symposium. You'll learn, grow, and go home a motivated and educated SFGer! Mel will be the Keynote speaker on Friday night at a farm-to-table dinner, and will be speaking on Saturday along with our CEO, Victoria Boudman. They will have the All New Square Foot Gardening book for sale and book signing. This event is sponsored by and ticketed through University of Tennessee in Knoxville. Order tickets below:

Columbia, SC, Riverbanks Zoo Adult SFG Workshop
 Featuring Victoria Boudman, CEO of SFGF, on September 15th from 10:00 a.m. – 11:30 a.m. Ticket price is $15.
Earlier this year, the SFGF team placed SFGs in the park. Victoria will be using these for her demonstrations. Aside from the award-winning experience offered by the zoo itself, you'll get to meet our CEO. To register, or for more information, visit or contact Amanda via email at or telephone, 803-978-1131.
 Riverbanks Zoo is located at 500 Wildlife Parkway Columbia, SC 29210 MAP

Laguna Beach California SFG Booth
When:  Sat, September 15 & 16, 10am – 4pm
Where: Laguna Beach Water District, 306 3rd St. Laguna Beach. Map
Description:  Laguna Beach Water District Smartscape event - There will be two 3x3 elevated Square Foot Gardens for demo purposes. Master Gardeners will have a booth and answering questions. There will be a large number of vendors and lots of giveaways. Bids will be taken for the elevated Square Foot Gardens for a Sunday auction. Mark Fierle will be teaching. For more information, contact Mark Fierle by email at

Westford Massachusetts:  SFG for Families & Institutions 
When:  Sat, September 15th
Where:  (Map) Center for Healthy Living and Learning, Westford, MA
Description: Two classes offered SFG for Families (9:00 a.m. – noon) & SFG for Institutions (1:30 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.), taught by Amie Guyette Hall.

Paisley County Library, Eustis, FL: Free SFG Classes 
When: Sept. 18, Sept. 19 and Sept. 25th (Hours given below)
Where:  Paisley County Library, Eustis, Florida (map)
Description:  The Lake County Library System will be hosting a new series of free classes, each an introduction to All New Square Foot Gardening. The classes will include the foundations, fundamentals, and techniques of the Square Foot Gardening method created by Mel Bartholomew, a revolutionary in the world of gardening. Certified instructor Steve Earls, of SFG Supply in Eustis, will provide a hands-on experience and is open to questions. Classes will be offered Tuesday, September 18th at 11 a.m. in the Paisley County Library, Wednesday, September 19th at 3 p.m. in the City of Tavares Public Library; Thursday, September 25th at 2 p.m. in the Marion Baysinger Memorial County Library.

 San Diego Symposium, October 11-13th featuring Mel Bartholomew & Jim Teahan. This is Mel's only symposium for 2012. Become a certified instructor in world-renowned San Diego! Take classes in internationally famous Balboa Park. Sign up now, or get more details.  Already certified but in the CA area? Stop by anyway.

San Diego skyline with fireworks over the bay. Hope to see you here Oct. 11-13th!

Irvine, California Free SFG Workshop
When:  Sat, October 6, 10am – 4pm
Where: Great Park in Irvine, CA (map)
Description:  This is a full workshop on Square Foot Gardening. The event is free and sponsored by UCCE Master Gardeners. Contact Mark Fierle by email,, for more information.

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