Thursday, October 10, 2013

October 2013 Newsletter for Certified SFG Instructors

Official Publication of Square Foot Gardening Foundation

 Harvest of  News
In this Issue:
  • Welcome to new Certified Instructors
  • More Grants for Garden Projects
  • Addendum to September issue about People's Grant
  • National Farm to School Month and National Food Day
  • Community & Household Gardens on the Rise
  • How to Start a School Garden
  • Spotlight on Anita Hartzell-Hefler of Louisiana
  • Spotlight on Alfred Hall, Exec. Dir. of HUGS, and "Operation Pumpkin"
  • About American Community Gardening Association
  • Get Inspired! 
  • Quotes of the month
  • Upcoming Events

Linda Rex, Dearborn, Michigan

Lark Ticen Kenai, Alaska  (The first CI in Alaska!)

No photo - sorry!

Elizabeth Hicks, Rocky Mount, North Carolina

Wayne Harper's School Garden
Gardening Grants

1. Whole Kids Foundation will be accepting School Garden Grant applications through October 31, 2013. Whole Kids Foundation "is an organization devoted to improving children's nutrition and wellness with the goal of ending the childhood obesity epidemic." Learn more or apply
2. Georgia Pacific Foundation Grants support organizations that "improve the quality of life" in areas where Georgia-Pacific operates. Its key investment areas are: educational efforts for job readiness training for young people and workers; community enrichment, including affordable housing and community safety; environmental programs to achieve clean air and water, recycling, as well as land and resource conservation. They also like to fund entrepreneurship initiatives to increase self-sufficiency and economic empowerment among women, minorities, and youth. The audience served includes non-formal educators (such as Certified Instructors), public and private schools, scout and youth groups, as well as teachers. Applications must be submitted online from January 1 through October 31, annually. Visit the Georgia Pacific website to take an "Eligibility Survey." 
3. Captain Planet Foundation $250 - $2,500 Grants
This foundation offers grants to school and community groups in support of hands-on environmental projects. The objective of the Foundation is to "encourage innovative programs that empower children and youth around the world to work individually and collectively to solve environmental problems in their neighborhoods and communities." Submit a proposal anytime of the year; however, proposals will not be reviewed until the last day of December, 2013. If you are hoping to start a 2014 project, it is best to get your application in before December 31 so funding will arrive in time if you are approved.The next review times are scheduled the last day of March, June and September, 2014. 
4. Fiskars Project Orange Thumb  
This organization promotes neighborhood beautification, and for 2013, their focus is on community gardening projects. Per the website, "If you’re part of a community garden group or civic organization in the U.S. or Canada, simply apply to our grant program by December 31. Your organization could receive $5,000 in cash and garden tools to help you reach your goals of community change. Your group could even be the recipient of a complete garden makeover, in which the Project Orange Thumb team comes to your neighborhood and turns unused space into a beautiful community garden in just one day! Grant recipients will be announced March 31, 2014." Read more or apply online 
5. A List with Farm to School – Grant and Funding Opportunities

                             Addendum to September Newsletter

People's Grant (mentioned in our September newsletter) is closed for applications. However, you can still apply for designation as a People's Garden and you may be able to apply for a grant elsewhere to help you start a People's Garden. Unfortunately, you will not be able to access the USDA People's Garden website until the "lapse in government funding" has been addressed.

School garden photo by Wayne Harper

October is National Farm to School Month and Oct. 24, 2013 is National Food Day
National Farm to School Month - In 2010, the U.S. Congress approved a resolution to officially designate October as National Farm to School Month. "Farm to school is broadly defined as any program that connects schools (K-12) and local farms with the objectives of serving healthy meals in school cafeterias, improving student nutrition, providing agriculture, health and nutrition education opportunities, and supporting local and regional farmers." Programs exist in all 50 states.

National Food Day - Food Day is a nationwide celebration and a movement for healthy, affordable, and sustainable food.According to the website:

"Get Food Education in Every School is a national initiative created by Food Day and the Jamie Oliver Food Foundation to raise awareness about the critical importance of food education in schools across America.

It provides a chance to start talking about how food education should be an integrated part of the school curriculum, and that hands-on cooking and essential food skills should be taught to every child, at every school in the country.

If every child had the opportunity to learn about, grow and cook food and understand the implications of food waste on the wider community, we believe they’d have the knowledge and tools to lead healthier and more fulfilling lives…" Read more about these programs:
  1. National Farm to School Month
  2. How to Start a Farm to School Program
  3. National Food Day
  4. Search for Food Day events in your area

Victoria Boudman (center) speaking with volunteers at St. John's Community Garden
Did you know the Number of Community and Household Gardens is on the Rise?

National Community Garden Association statistics show there are now more than 20,000 community gardens in the U.S – more than three times as many as there were in 1996. More than 41 million U.S. households grew a vegetable garden in 2009. Over 19.5 million families had an herb garden in 2009. Why are gardens on the increase? Survey participants said:

  • They want better-tasting food (58%)
  • They garden to get savings on food bills (54%)
  • They want better-quality food (51%)
  • They want peace of mind about food safety (48%)

School Garden Photo by Wayne Harper
How to Start a School Garden 
This video is chock full of ideas for school gardens. It references a garden planner which includes Square Foot Gardens. We have not "officially" checked out this planner and do not officially endorse it. If any of you use the planner, please share with us if it teaches the correct SFG method. However, the ideas presented here are well worth looking into for anyone who is considering creating a school garden. You may find something you hadn't thought of before, or realize that a procedure you have used is better than those presented here. If so, let us know so we can share your ideas and improvements with other instructors!

Helping elderly and disabled people learn to Square Foot Garden is rewarding.
 Spotlight on: Anita Hartzell-Hefler, Louisiana Master Gardener and SFG Instructor

Certified Instructor, Anita Hartzell-Hefler of Louisiana, is also a Louisiana Master Gardener. She was happy that the SFG online instructor's course counted toward her continuing education credits as a master gardener as well. Even better, Anita was asked to give an instructional class in Square Foot Gardening for the next master gardener class program which may begin in May 2014.

Anita is in the River Region Master Gardeners. In October of 2014, the Louisiana Master Gardener's state meeting will be held in New Orleans, LA, and Anita said she plans to attend.

Anita recently visited the Southeast Louisiana War Veterans Home in Reserve. She is excited to be working with four of the veterans in the Alzheimer Unit, who each have a small planter to work with. Anita is outfitting these planters for Square Foot Gardening, and promised to send us photos when the gardens are done.

Spotlight on: Alfred N. E. Hall in Hamilton, OH 
Alfred Hall is a certified SFG instructor and Executive Director of Hamilton Urban Gardens (HUGS). H.U.G.S. is a nonprofit organization dedicated to urban agriculture, community gardening, health and nutritional education, and nontraditional gardening methods in Hamilton, Ohio. HUGS is well known in Hamilton for many good deeds, but especially for its annual "Operation Pumpkin" event that features food, drinks, snacks, doggie goodie vendors, the "Giant Pumpkin Regatta," a Pet Parade and pet costume contest. Rescheduled this year, events will take place Sunday, October 13, 2013. Per Alfred, "Operation Pumpkin will have a few food, drink, snack, and doggie-goodie vendors setting up noon – 4pm at the Amphitheater’s main entrance for this Sunday's Pumpkin Regatta and Pet Parade & Costume Contest. Restrooms will be available." Here are the details:
Giant Pumpkin Regatta 1pm- The regatta will start from the Great Miami Rowing Club launch ramp and proceed down the river to the High Street Bridge. Alfred said, "Come cheer on your favorite Pumpkin and Crew!"
Pet Parade and Costume Contest 2pm - The parade will start at the main entrance to the Rivers Edge Amphitheater and proceed around the walkway of the amphitheater ending in front of the stage area. Prizes and awards will be given out to best costumes and Operation Pumpkin Grand Champion. Register at


"The Mission of the American Community Gardening Association is to build community by increasing and enhancing community gardening and greening across the United States and Canada. The American Community Gardening Association (ACGA) is a bi-national nonprofit membership organization of professionals, volunteers and supporters of community greening in urban and rural communities." Read more

                                                         GET INSPIRED!

Square Foot Garden photo by Belinda Jensen, copyright Oct. 2013


"God is responsible for the harvest — but we must plant, water, and cultivate the seeds."
 ~Richard Stearns, president of World Vision U.S.
“And the Lord planted a garden…”
Genesis 2:8
“And the Lord God took man and put him into the
garden to dress it and keep it.”
Genesis 2:15

Announcements & Events
Every 4th Friday of the month, 2:00pm, San Antonio Food Bank, San Antonio, TX Class on SFG held in the Spurs Community Garden. Register one week prior to the class by calling 210-431-8347 Learn more

Arizona Survivalist / Prepper Expo, October 19-20, 2013 from 9am-4pm Saturday, and 10am- 3pm Sunday; Held at the Commemorative Air Force Museum, 2017 N. Greenfield Road, Mesa AZ 85215; Fee is $10 with 12 and under free Learn more

Through October 22, 2013, 3:30pm-5:00pm, 645 Larkin Drive, Salinas, Lyceum of Monterey County, "The Art of Square foot Gardening" The same classes taught by Lynn Hamilton will be held again for six Thursdays - Dec 5, 12 & Jan 9, 16, 23, 30. Learn more (1st class) and 2nd Class

October 26, 2013, 10am-1pm, Bamboo Room, Los Angeles County Arboretum and Botanic Garden, SFG Class, Jo Ann Carey, instructor, $25 Arboretum members/$30 non-members. Learn more

October 27, 2013, 9:30am – 11:00am, Mount Eden, Auckland, New Zealand, "Square Foot Gardening with Ken Clark" workshop. Learn more

November 9, 14, 20, 2013, University of Florida, Orange County Extension, Square Foot Gardening Basics, a 1 ½ hour class. Learn more

December 7, 2013, 10am-12noon, Draper, Utah; "The Winter Garden Harvest Class" taught by Jim Teahan, author of The Wealthy Earth Learn more