A fresh approach

Published 9:52 pm Wednesday, June 27, 2012

There’s a place in Beaufort County that offers residents fresh produce for less than you spend on your morning coffee.
Plots of land at the Beaufort County Community Garden go for $20 a year. The fenced-in area just off Airport Road in Washington is a great place to learn about horticulture and healthful eating while reducing your grocery bill.
The garden is supervised by Beaufort County Cooperative Extension and managed by Beaufort County Master Gardeners. There’s free mulch, water and a handful of experts from the Master Gardener’s hotline that can turn any novice into a farmer with a green thumb.
If you’re willing to roll up your sleeves and spend a little time, you will literally reap the benefits.
A cheaper grocery bill is only one of the benefits of starting your own garden. Growing and eating fresh produce will improve your health and your waistline. If you want a surefire way to get your kids to eat their vegetables, have them grow them.
During this year’s elementary school tours of the community gardens, Master Gardener Judy Keohane said she was surprised by the questions and level of excitement from the students.
Some had never seen a green tomato or a squash still on the vine. They reveled over the cornstalks, fresh herbs and greenery that surrounded them.
The interest is there. It just needs to be cultivated.
When the garden opened three years ago, nearly all of the 49 plots were rented. If the popularity continued to grow, Beaufort County Cooperative Extension was prepared to double the number of plots.
Unfortunately, it was never necessary. Will this be the year that changes? We hope so.
For more information, contact Tanya Weyhrauch, Beaufort County Cooperative Extension horticulture agent, 252-946-0111 or 252-944-4984.