Vermont Community Garden Network Bulletin

June 2013  



"The day is coming when a single carrot, freshly observed,
will set off a revolution."
      ~Paul Cezanne
It's a busy time for gardens! There are many new projects and programs sprouting all over the state as more and more communities embrace the movement and work together to create welcoming spaces for people to grow and learn together. This means more people growing fresh, healthy food for themselves, their families and their neighbors. VCGN is proud to be part of this important work through technical assistance, trainings, grants, and networking for garden leaders throughout Vermont, and hands-on garden education in Burlington.

This spring, we visited garden groups from Newport to Bennington as part of our Grow It! garden leader training series and have been impressed and inspired by their passion, innovation, and dedication. Another highlight was a partnership with New England Grassroots Environment Fund and Highfields Center for Composting for a garden grant program that funded 18 garden projects!

Meanwhile in Burlington, we expanded our Community Teaching Garden program (check out the blog here), helped New Farms for New Americans develop a brand new community garden site, worked with Burlington Area Community Gardens to establish a new "Neighborhood Garden" designation and transition two gardens into the city's program, and launched a new educational partnership with the VNA Family Room garden program.

Now, more than ever, we need your support to meet the growing needs of the state's garden communities. Please consider a donation to further this important work.

The garden revolution is here!

- Jess Hyman, Executive Director


In This Issue
Grow It! Workshops for Garden Leaders
Sweet Potatoes for Your Garden
NEW! Insurance for Community Gardens
Thank You Donors!
Garden Grant Opportunities
Upcoming Events


GrowItGrow It! workshops for garden leaders:
Coming soon to a town near you!  
Grow It! Summer Workshop - Bennington 
James McSweeney from Highfields Center for Composting talks about community compost systems at the Grow It! summer workshop at Mount Anthony Union Middle School in Bennington earlier this week.

VCGN is continuing the statewide Community and School Garden Organizer Training series. If you are a garden leader, educator, or have an interest in community-based food production, this workshop series is for you! 


Summer workshops cover strategies
for reaching out and engaging the community and learning opportunities in the garden. Presenters include Libby Weiland and Jess Hyman of VCGN, garden expert Charlie Nardozzi, Joseph Keifer of Foodworks, and local partners. Fall workshop topics will include long-range planning, community partnerships, and state-wide network development.

Summer Schedule:
  • BURLINGTON: Wednesday, June 12, 3:30-8pm, Miller Center, 130 Gosse Ct.
  • HARTLAND: Tuesday, June 18, 3:30-8pm, Hartland Recreation Center,19 Rt 12
  • BARRE: Thursday, June 20, 3:30-8pm, Highgate Apartments, 121 Highgate Dr.
  • BELLOWS FALLS: Saturday, June 29, 9am-1:30pm, Bellows Falls Middle School, 15 School St.
  • NEWPORT:Monday, July 1, 3:45-8pm, CCV, 100 Main St., Suite 150
  • RUTLAND:Wednesday, July 10, 3:30-8pm, Rutland Middle School, 67 Library Ave.
The workshops are $30 each with a sliding scale based on ability to pay - we want to ensure that everyone can attend! A light meal is included at all workshops. Register here  or by calling (802) 861-4769.

The Grow It! trainings are presented in partnership with Charlie Nardozzi, Highfields Center for Composting, UVM Extension Master Gardeners, Foodworks at Two Rivers Center, and local partners.


The workshops and related technical assistance are made possible thanks to the generous support of New England Grassroots Environment Fund, Green Mountain Coffee Roasters, Windham Foundation, Ben & Jerry's Foundation, The Bay and Paul Foundations, and the Vermont Agency of Agriculture.




Sweet Potato Slip SaleWant to grow your own sweet potatoes?  

Champlain Valley Sweet Potato Slip Sale 
June 8 & 9 - 8 am to 6 pm
Red Wagon Plants in Hinesburg

Sweet potatoes grow very well in sandy, silty, and loamy soil and each well-rooted Beauregard B-14 slip can produce up to five pounds - and often more!


One pot with three plants is $6 (gardeners half-dozen - buy 6 pots, get one free!) and bulk orders are available. Thanks to the generosity of Julie Rubaud and her fantastic Red Wagon Plants staff, all proceeds from this fundraiser sale benefit Vermont Community Garden Network's educational programs.   


Red Wagon Plants is located at 2408 Shelburne Falls Road in Hinesburg. More info at or (802) 861-4769. (Pre-orders available until 7 p.m. Friday, June 7.)


Psst... Check out this special offer from Red Wagon and Localvore Today...  


Sweet Potato slip potting 2013
VCGN's Community Teaching Garden Instructor Denise Quick, Board Member Fred Schmidt, and his grandson Dion potted up sweet potato slips just for you!


NEW! Insurance for Community Gardens

The American Community Gardening Association recently launched a new Community Garden Insurance Program through Brunswick Companies. The policy includes:

  • Liability ranging from $100,000 to $1 Million Dollars
  • Directors and Officers Liability (Optional)
  • Equipment Breakdown Coverage Available
  • Annual Premium Starting at $350
  • Interest Free Payment Plan

The policy is only available to ACGA members. For more information, visit and complete the online application. 



Thank You to our Donors and Supporters 

We are so grateful for the individuals, businesses, funders, partners, and volunteers who support our work to grow vibrant garden communities.

Big thank yous go out to everyone who contributed to our annual fund and to special events like the Vermont City Marathon and the Day in the Dirt!

You can be a part of this movement, too! Please make a donation today to grow more gardens and healthy communities.
Pay just $10 for a $20 Red Wagon Plants gift card and
$2 will go to the Community Teaching Garden scholarship program - Wow!

The Community Teaching Garden scholarship program is getting a boost from Red Wagon Plants and Localvore Today. As part of this new fundraising partnership, each business will donate $1 on every purchase -  that means when you pay $10, you get a $20 gift card at Red Wagon Plants AND VCGN gets $2. What a great deal!

Sign up for Localvore Today at and they will also make a donation to Hunger Free Vermont. LVT will not spam you and you can unsubscribe at any time.

This special offer launches TUESDAY, JUNE 11 - Don't miss it!


Garden Grants 


SEED - The Vermont Community Garden Network (VCGN), Highfields Center Composting and the New England Grassroots Environment Fund (NEGEF) are partnering to provide grants of up to $1,000 with a revolving deadline for Vermont-based school & community gardens and compost projects.More info

IOBY (In Our Back Yard) - Crowd funding for garden projects. Apply at 


Refugee Agricultural Grant Program - Grant applications should propose strategies that incorporate agriculture and food systems to improve the lives of refugee families. These strategies should result in sustainable and/or supplemental income, improved access to healthy foods and better nutrition, and enhanced integration into communities by refugee families. Applications should demonstrate an understanding that includes the population to be served, the needs and opportunities of a community or area, available partnerships and resources, a practical approach to achieving objectives, qualitative and quantitative outcomes, organizational capability and a budget consistent with the overall approach and anticipated results. Deadline: July 2. Info at 


2013 Youth Garden Grant Award - National Gardeningh Association awards Youth Garden Grants to schools and community organizations with child-centered garden programs. Priority will be given to programs that emphasize one or more of these elements: integration of content standards, nutrition connections, environmental awareness, entrepreneurship, and/or social aspects of gardening such as leadership development, team building, community support, or service-learning. Deadline: December 3. Info at
Project Orange Thumb - 10 grants of $5,000 in cash and tools to help support their goals of neighborhood beautification and horticulture education, and one complete garden makeover! Deadline: December 15. Info at

Small Grants Program for Congregations Doing Faith-Based Initiatives to Transform the Food System - The Presbyterian Hunger Program offers grants from $100 - $1000. Applications accepted on a rolling basis. More info  


Awesome Foundation's Food Chapter - Every month, one $1,000 micro-grant will be given for an awesome idea involving food. The more inventive, the better. More info   


Espoma Environmental Stewardship Award- National gardening Association and Espoma are offering 5 awards to home gardeners who  demonstrate excellent environmental initiative by incorporating environmental  stewardship practices to their garden design. More info 

EventSave the Date:    


Here's a sampling of garden events coming up this month. For more events from VCGN and our partner organizations, visit our website.  


June 8 & 9:  Champlain Valley Sweet Potato Slip Sale at Red Wagon Plants 

in Hinesburg! 10:00am-6:00pm each day.  Pick up some great plants for your garden; 100% of proceeds from sweet potato slip sales support VCGN's garden-based education and outreach programs.     


June 9: Hartland farm and Food Fest, 11am-3pm. Annual fundraiser for Hartland Farm to School program. Over 40 local vendors featuring farm products, plants, prepared foods, and crafts. Student displays of farm to school projects. Horse and wagon rides, ice cream, music, games, silent raffle. Come for lunch, to see farm animals, and sample local foods. No pets please. More info. 


June 13: Bale Localfest, A Celebration of All Things Local, 3-9pm, South Royalton Green. An eclectic blend of live music, local food, community groups, demonstrations, farmers, education workshops, and kids activities. .More info. 

June 14 & 15: The Vermont Traditional Foods and Health Symposium, Shelburne farms. Learn the core principles of traditional diets, inspired by the teachings of the Weston A. Price Foundation. Featuring Sally Fallon Morell, Dr. Catherine Shanahan, Nora Gedgaudas, and Cathy Eason. More info.  


June 15: Edible & Medicinal Use of Non-native Invasive species at the Horticulture Farm in South Burlington, 9:00-11:00am. Walk through the Hort. farm with registered dietician, Melanie Brotz, and identify non-native invasives with medicinal and edible benefits. More information. 


June 15 & June 16: Edible Earth, Roots, Petals, & Paths tours, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. each day, with gourmet picnic lunch, baked goods, and beverages. The tour includes seven private perennial and vegetable gardens in Putney, The Putney School gardens and farm, the Putney Central School garden and orchard, and the renowned four-acre garden created by Theodora and Peter Berg on Rice Mountain with the assistance of garden designer Gordon Hayward and dry stone waller Dan Snow. Tickets are available at the Putney Public Library. More info at or (802) 387-4407.


June 22: Burlap Bag Benefit Sale, 9am-noon at 95 North Ave, Burlington (COTS parking lot). Burlap coffee bags are great for garden mulch, grow bags, craft projects, and more! All proceeds benefit VCGN's education programs. 20-bag bundles for $20. Free Green Mountain Coffee Roasters iced coffee. Pre-orders and more info at or (802) 861-4769.


June 22: Rustic Cedar Workshop, 8am - 4pm, UVM Hort Farm in South Burlington. Brian Gluck of Vermont Rustic Cedar returns for an all-day hands-on workshop. Build a 6 foot rustic cedar obelisk to take home. $70/$80 includes all materials. Pre-registration required     

June 24:Urban Herb Walk,5-6pm, meet at City Market in Burlington.City Market and Urban Moonshine partner to present an urban herb walk with herbalist Guido Mas´┐Ż. Come take a guided walk through Burlington, learning to identify common medicinal plants pushing their way through the cracks in the sidewalks, filling the lawns in our parks, and lining the streets of our city. More info. 


The VCGN Bulletin provides garden-based news, resources, and events for community, school, and neighborhood gardeners and garden organizers all over the state on a monthly basis. For more frequent updates and a fun way to post your own news, garden photos, videos, and events, check us out on  Facebook and  Twitter.

We welcome comments and suggestions for the VCGN Bulletin. Send your garden news and events to share with our growing network of more than 1,500 school and community gardeners all over the state. Please include a web page link to help direct readers to the information source.

Since 2001, Friends of Burlington Gardens has worked with community and school groups to help start, sustain and grow gardens, building strong local food systems and vibrant educational sites. We are changing our name to the Vermont Community Garden Network, which has been the name of our statewide program since 2006. The name change reflects our mission to support the hundreds of garden communities across the state. This means more resources, technical assistance, grants, training and networking opportunities that meet the growing needs of local garden leaders. Meanwhile, our established local programs will continue to provide fun, hands-on garden education for youth and adults in Burlington and offer models for the rest of the state and beyond.

For more information, visit our website or contact us at:

12 North St. Suite 5
Burlington, VT 05401
(802) 861-4769

We'd love to hear from you!
Jess Hyman, Executive Director
Libby Weiland, Program Manager
Ann Pearce, Volunteer Coordinator/Admin
Denise Quick, Community Teaching Garden Instructor
Jessie Mazar, Garden Educator
Liz Berman, Garden Education Intern
Erin Anderson, Garden Education Intern

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