The 2011 Refugee Garden season has begun as refugees have begun to plant. We are excited because our growers are getting a much earlier start this year than last, and we cannot wait to see what the refugees can do with an extra month of growing! It has been a much slower start this year though. Much blame falls on the all the rain we have been receiving in the last 2 weeks. Also, refugees have not been able to get to the garden as much as they did last year. You would think we would be discouraged, but no! This is actually a great sign of the success of our program. Last year, many of our growers were not working and had much more free time. This year, a large majority of our growers are working full-time jobs. We gladly welcome a slow start if it means our growers are working!!!
The Iraqi brothers are back. They dedicated 1 plot to growing 42 tomato plants! Like last year, they dedicated another plot to growing only flowers! In a few months, the back plot of the garden will be full of marigolds!
One of our new growers and newest arrivals was the first of the Burmese to break ground. When watching the Burmese garden, I am always amazed at how confident and skilled they are even if they have only been in Missouri for a few weeks. We’re excited to see the garden fill with Chin Baung again!
Our new Eritrean growers were the first in the garden. It will be exciting to see a new culture and new farming techniques in the coming weeks. I made an interesting observation about the diversity of our growers while watching the Eritreans garden that I will save for our next post.
Thanks for reading and please feel free to come visit the garden! We are planning an event at the garden for World Refugee Day on June 18th. Stay in touch for details!