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by Janine Butler, Garden Volunteer, Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden

We are two-thirds of the way to our goal of donating 10,000 pounds of vegetables to FeedMore! (FeedMore is the umbrella organization for the Central Virginia FoodBank and Meals on Wheels Serving Central Virginia.)

On Monday, Karen Clowers, horticulture coordinator at Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden, delivered a bumper crop weighing 691 pounds full of tomatoes, green peppers, eggplant and zucchini to FeedMore.

This brings our current total of donated produce to 6,376 pounds. This is fantastic!

Many people have participated in food drives for their local foodbank by supplying canned food or boxes of dry goods.  However, did you know FeedMore also provides fresh meals made from scratch?  They are using the fresh vegetables from the Garden to supplement meals made for various programs such as Kids Café and Meals on Wheels here in Richmond. FeedMore benefits in a couple of ways; they get fresh locally grown produce AND they save thousands of dollars by not having to purchase these vegetables.  An average price of $1.99 pound means that so far we have saved FeedMore over $12,600!

The staff and volunteers at Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden are so excited by this success that plans are already being made to continue beyond the summer growing season.  There is talk of planting cabbages and broccoli in the cooler weather, and I have even heard people talking about what we could plant next year!

If you have produce from your home garden you’d like to donate to FeedMore, simply bring it by Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden anytime during regular Garden hours (9 a.m. – 5 p.m.) We’ll combine it with the produce harvested from the Community Kitchen Garden at Lewis Ginter and the weight will be added to the Garden’s tally. We’re closing in on our goal, but we need your help!

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