JoAnne Skelly: Gardeners make a difference in the community

With harvest time upon us, you may find you are blessed with a bounty of late-summer treats such as zucchini, potatoes, tomatoes and more. Or, as fruit ripens on your fruit trees, are you finding you have more apples than you need or know what to do with? Perhaps you have too many grapes? If nature has rewarded you with plenty, would you like to share it with your community?

The Greenhouse Project (TGP) has been growing and distributing healthy food to food assistance agencies for almost 10 years. In addition to what is grown on site, the Project manager, volunteers, AmeriCorps interns and students have worked with Fruit Barons sponsored by Healthy Trees to glean and share extra produce from community members’ fruit trees, rather than letting it go to waste. These devoted folks deliver food weekly to Friends in Service Helping, Ron Wood Family Resource Center, Salvation Army, Circles Initiative, Do Drop Inn or Food for Thought, who pass it on to people in need. And, while you can certainly donate directly to any of these organizations, it may be easier to bring your extra produce to The Greenhouse Project at Carson High School and the folks there will distribute it to these wonderful agencies for you.

The Greenhouse Project was started specifically to grow vegetables and fruit for those with insufficient food resources, to provide a learning facility for Carson High School Agriculture and special needs students, and to grow the flowers for the hanging baskets that beautify downtown Carson City each year. It is a 501(c) (3) nonprofit Nevada corporation.

So, if you have extra veggies or fruit to share, you can drop it off at The Greenhouse Project, 1111 N. Saliman Road (Carson High School), Monday through Thursday from 8 a.m. until 1 p.m. The Project is located east of the CHS bus yard at the south end of the school.

If you are a gardener or would-be gardener and enjoy being with like-minded people, The Greenhouse Project is offering a fall planting learning opportunity on Sept. 23, from 8:30 until 11:30 a.m. This will involve bed and grounds preparation, distributing compost and transplanting. Volunteers will also be able to tour the greenhouse, see the propagation area, observe how to grow mushrooms, learn new gardening techniques and explore the permaculture plot. For more information or to sign up to volunteer, contact Greenhouse Manager Cory King at 775-600-9530 or cory@carsoncity

JoAnne Skelly is Associate Professor & Extension Educator, Emerita at University of Nevada Cooperative Extension. She can be reached at


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