By ABBEY KUNKLE
Special to the PRESS
Obesity and lack of fresh produce are chronic problems associated in South Texas with over 10 percent of the state’s desserts located in our own backyard. Starting up again for its third season, the Port Isabel Community Garden will begin planting on Friday, March 27 at 4 p.m.
The project started as a grant from the USDA and the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) in order to establish community gardens in the Rio Grande Valley that promote health, wellness and nutrition. The garden will be assigning raised beds for this spring’s harvest and giving away seeds for this year’s crop. Located on Port Road, the community garden will have a series of gardening classes going over basic gardening techniques in growing fruits and vegetables in Valley. The garden and classes are open to the public and free of charge.
Currently, the project — called Growing and Nourishing Healthy Communities — manages over 30 gardens in Cameron, Hidalgo and Starr Counties. Each participant receives a garden box and seeds to grow corresponding with the season’s selection. Participants can also take home plants in order to establish container gardens in their own homes. This project was created for those with little accessibility to fresh foods who may not be able to have a garden at home or who live in an apartment or condominium. Topics such as soils, fertilizing, pesticide use and even cooking will be discussed
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