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Learn How to Grow a Great School or Community Garden

Union County Office of Public Information

Thursday, February 6, 2014 • 7:32pm

The Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders is pleased to announce Get Your School Garden Growing, a full day of workshops from the Rutgers Extension of Union County designed to help educators and community group leaders develop successful gardens for students and youth group members.

Get Your School Garden Growing will be held on Saturday, February 22, at Union County’s Trailside Nature and Science Center in Mountainside.

“For a community garden to thrive, you need team building and organization as well as good gardening skills,” said Freeholder Chairman Christopher Hudak. “This workshop will help provide you with the tools you need to pull students and volunteers together in a successful effort.”

The topics to be covered in Get Your School Garden Growing include guidance on working with young gardeners as well as finding suitable sites including sun, soil, and water considerations, pest management, safety consideration for young gardeners, and nutrition awareness including the new USDA “MyPlate” guidelines.

Other topics include hydroponics in the classroom and composting, along with guidance on integrating classroom lessons about soil health, soil biology, and recycling.

“Community gardening has proven to be a valuable exercise in teamwork and nutrition awareness for young people, while also contributing hands-on reinforcement for today’s challenging STEM curriculum,” said Hudak. “Whether you have already started a garden or are planning one, I encourage you to attend.”

Get Your School Garden Growing kicks off a new Chairman’s Initiative that calls for Union County to support community gardening with additional publicity and outreach materials, including new web and print content.

The Rutgers Cooperative Extension of Union County, a program of the Rutgers New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Station, is supported in part by the Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders.

The registration deadline for Get Your School Garden Growing is Friday, February 14. A fee of $25 includes lunch and all materials.  For more information visit ucnj.org/rce, call the Union County Extension office in Westfield at 908-654-9854 (press “2”), or email Judith Laganga at the Extension office, jlaganga@ucnj.org.

Please join the County of Union online at ucnj.org, on Facebook at ucnj.org/facebook, and on Twitter at twitter.com/countyofunionnj.

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