CSU Extension launches victory gardens for the age of COVID-19 with Grow & Give

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Published Wednesday, May 20, 2020

Coloradoans across the state are being encouraged to participate in CSU Extension's new gardening initiative Grow & Give, a modern Victory Garden project designed for citizens to grow vegetable gardens and plant extra to share with local food banks and community members in need.

Victory gardens were planted on public and private land during World War I and World War II to reduce pressure on the public food supply. Roughly 40% of the U.S. vegetables grown in those years came from 20 million victory gardens.

Through the new Grow & Give program, CSU Extension is encouraging people to take advantage of their time at home during the COVID-19 pandemic to get outside and plant gardens, whether they are longtime gardeners or first-time planters.

"During a time when there is so much bad news and uncertainty, we are giving Coloradans a positive opportunity to contribute locally," said Katie Dunker, statewide coordinator for the CSU Extension Master Gardener program. "We have wrapped our arms around something that is very tangible and accessible and are using university resources and expertise to promote growing food in every corner of the state to help those in need. This is what Extension does; this is who we are. Education and outreach are the very fabric of what a land-grant university does."

CSU Extension and Online offer free help

In addition to offering gardening expertise for Coloradans, CSU is offering an online Vegetable Gardening course for free, just in time for spring planting. This course is part of CSU Extension's online Certified Gardener Program and will teach gardeners everything needed to know about planning a vegetable garden, including planting times, layout design, soil preparation and fertilization, routine care, frost protection tips and more.

To register, visit CSU's Certified Gardener page and use Promo Code GARDEN2020 during checkout between May 1-31.

Students who successfully complete this course will be able to:

  • Describe considerations in garden planning and planting times;
  • Describe block style layout in a raised bed garden design;
  • Describe soil preparation and fertilization for the vegetable garden;
  • Describe routine garden care including mulching, irrigation, and water conservation;
  • Describe routing care for tomatoes;
  • List hints for growing other vegetables;
  • And, describe frost protection and microclimate modification.

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