Jun 23, 2020

COVID GARDENING!!

Hi Everyone,

 

Despite all that is happening, our gardens are GROWING! We couldn't do it withoug our amazing community and the diverse individuals that both represent, volunteer, guide and support our work. We appreciate you!

Growing communities: Barnum neighborhood doubled from 3 to 6 beds. Even through the early days of stay safe, neighbors helped to build neighbors new beds, shared cardboard, their trucks all with gloves, masks and social distancing included. They all can’t wait for the year end harvest dinner where neighborhood hosts gather, get to know each other better and share season stories and their favorite dish from their Jovial Garden and we are hoping it will be maskless!  Edgewater and Lakewood both increased by 1 new host.

Growing food: This year we couldn’t plan on DUG, FROG or our local schools to produce our seedlings so we Jovially rolled up our sleeves and went overboard. With well over 300 tomato starts of 8 varieties, over 100 winter squash starts, just under 100 pepper plants, plus eggplant, pumpkin, herbs ,pollinator attractors like Mondaria, sunflowers, Dwarf Bachelor Buttons and more. We have so many plants that we had a plant sale with very reasonable prices so anyone can afford to plant something in their yard or balcony and have started a fund for next year’s seeds or seeding materials!

Growing Gardeners: Despite Covid-19 we have 4 solid Neighborhood leaders, 3 of which are new and I am enjoying training them not only the gardening techniques and ideas I have cultivated over 40 years of gardening and Colorado Master Gardening training but teaching them by example how to research gardening issues and more importantly how to share what they have learned with volunteers and hosts. 

Improved water conservation: by re-piping our beds with ¼” emitter tubing and closely monitoring the drip system connections, our water bill last month was almost $120 less than the same month last year.

I would invite you to sign up for our newsletter for a weekly peak at what’s happening in our gardens, seasonal gardening tips and recipes: https://jovialconcepts.org/ scroll to the bottom of the page, right side. Also, please join us each Saturday except 4th of July and Labor Day (Saturday before), 9 am – 1 pm, 5045 W. 1st Ave., Denver, 80219. Park in the west parking lot and walk over to the east side. Bring your work gloves, masks, sunscreen, refillable water bottle AND a Jovial heart!

On a personal note, thank you for your generosity, I am a widowed, senior but super active woman who after years of marginal employment, if any, has found my dream job that actually allows me to share my gifts and blessings and make a secure living. I love what I do and the folks I do it with.

Links:

Feb 18, 2020

Year End 2019

Kids
Kids

Despite a short season what a FANTASTIC YEAR! 

Jovial Concepts donated 4,719 Pounds of Food to local food banks and elementary schools! We hosted over 750 volunteers in the gardens for more than 4,890 hours! We build 4 gardens in the Barnum neighborhood and look to add 3 more in 2020. We worked with Rocky Mountain Independance and Jeffco Transition school for 1,128 hours to provide life skills, cooking lessons, and garden experience to 27 individiauls with disabilities. In partnership with Project Helping and Kynfulness for Kids, our gardens raised awareness and created a safe space for those living with mental illness, together our gardens touched the lives of 2,831 students! We were honored by Ewing Irrigation and Audobon International with a Water Innovator Award for our commitment to sustainable water practices. In partnership with the City of Lakewood we had another successful Earth Day Event at the Heritage Center and Educated 3,000 people about gardens, compost and sustainable lifestyles!

Jovial Concepts also continues to develop our community center at 1st and Sheridan called The Co-op at 1st. We have created economic opportunites for over 83 nonprofits and entrepenuers, by providing jobs and affordable work space. We served our community 12 free meals, over 100 free and donation based classes, and 6 donation based medical clinics. We could not be more grateful for your support and the opportunity to fill the gaps in our neighborhood. The City of Denver has Honored us as a Certifiably Green Business.

Links:

Oct 15, 2019

1,200lbs of Tomatoes!

Hello Jovial Supporters and Gardeners,

 

The first frost has come early and forced us to emergency harvest!! We picked over 1,200lbs of tomatoes in the last 2 weeks!! This year we have grown 4,155lbs of produce with some final winter squash and pumpkins still trickling in to add to our final harvest. 

Despite bringing in most the harvest, there is still much to do! We have over 60 gardens to put to bed so please join us Saturdays from 10-2 to help put them to bed. 

This has been a truly amazing year for Jovial. Some highlights are as follows:

  • Celebrated our 10 Year Anniversary
  • Won an Award of Distinction for Sustainabiliy from Ewining Irrigation and Audobon International.
  • Became a Certifiably Green Business by the City of Denver
  • Worked with 12 Individuals with Disabilities from Jeffco Transition Schools and Rocky Mountain Independance.
  • Opened the Year Round Farmers Market at The Co-op at 1st
  • Supported  Edgewater, Eagleton, and Great Work Montessori Elementary students in gardens and greenhouses!
  • Volunteering on a Pollinator Panel at Edgewater Elementary School and got to work with so many other amazing farmers, small businesses, and nonprofit partners. 

My favorite success story of this month was listening to our garden hosts explain the program and all they had learned to strangers at the 10 year anniversary party. Julie, who hosts a garden in Lakewood, was wonderful in sharing her story: her kid's school started to explore having a garden and called a meeting of interested parents. Julie, being in love with her Jovial garden decided to go and learn about what the school may be offering her kids. Julie said that working in the Jovial Gardens gave her the confidence to stand up and offer some ideas. By the end of the meeting Julie had helped them design, budget and plan out what a successful garden would look like at the school. It is wonderful to see how proud, confident, and knowledgable Julie has become. Julie is one of our newest garden hosts and we cannot wait to see how much more we can grow with her and her family. 

notursiums
notursiums
high five
high five
 
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