Community News
Go Back
2017-12-14

Hill Country Master Gardeners help sustain local teen Center Garden

Contributed

The Boys & Girls Clubs of Bandera County established the community garden at 715 Maple St. in Bandera in 2010 for the purpose of youth gardening, education, healthy eating and physical activity. Graduate/undergraduate students, along with community nutrition and public health students have been involved in the garden activities with help from Schreiner University’s professor Dr. Ruth Grubesic.
Since 2010, more than 100 children and their families have been positively impacted by the garden’s existence through learning activities including how to cook with vegetables, being able to share fresh produce with family and others in need, and learning how to manage and sustain a garden at home. Additional benefits from this community garden include the ability to promote and increase physical activity and community cohesiveness by teaching children and youth how to work together for a common cause, and being able to care for the needs of others.
Improved health outcomes are an indirect benefit of gardening, and therefore, reduce the risk of becoming overweight or obese, as well as reducing the risk of developing high blood pressure, Type 2 diabetes and elevated cholesterol.
The Hill Country Master Gardeners work through educational activities each week with the youth as they learn to plant, weed, mulch, compost, water and harvest the produce. In addition, other local community agency volunteers teach about plants, insects, and bees as it relates to the Monarch Way Station in the garden. These teaching lessons are a cornerstone of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Bandera County Healthy Lifestyles program.
The garden is currently in need of bed maintenance. The garden plot consists of four vegetable garden beds and two herb garden beds. These beds have two layers deep of organic material inside each bed. The current and immediate needs are picnic tables, along with soil and compost to prepare for each growing season throughout the year. Ongoing assistance with finances and adult volunteers are coordinated by the Boys & Girls Clubs of Bandera County Advisory Committee which consists of two Hill Country Master Gardeners, one BGC staff member and one faculty member from Schreiner University. Sustainability of this project is secured by support from the advisory committee, along with assistance from the BGC Resource Development staff and volunteers.
If you are interested in becoming involved with this community project either by donation or volunteering time, please visit: donate.seedmoney.org/B & G Clubs of Bandera County. Visit www.hillcountrymastergardeners.org or www.bgcbanderacounty.com for more information.