New garden opens in Lester Park neighborhood

By KBJR News 1

June 29, 2014 Updated Jun 29, 2014 at 9:52 PM CST

Duluth, MN (NNCNOW.com) --- Another place to grow fruits and vegetables has been added to a Duluth neighborhood.
The Lester Park Community Garden is providing a place to learn and grow food for the community.

The land behind the Faith Lutheran Church in Duluth's Lakeside neighborhood has been transformed.

"I like it because it converts this area that we just would've mowed grass into productive land" said Pastor Larry Goebel of Faith Lutheran Church.

Productive land that is bringing the community together.

"There's all sort of people who are gardening, young and old alike and it's fun to see them all out here working and enjoying and the common bond is the dirt and the growing" said Pastor Goebel.

This garden is a unique addition to the neighborhood.
At least 10 percent of what is grown in each of the 30 plots available will be given to CHUM or used in the local food shelf.
CHUM even has its own plots in the garden.

"We'll send that down to CHUM and they'll distribute it in their various food offerings to people" said Pastor Goebel.

While garden knowledge may have been very commonplace a generation or two ago, it's been pushed aside since much of our food now comes from the grocery store.
This garden aims to plant and re-grow the knowledge that has been passed down for generations.

"So that's why we have the area dedicated to the school and we're going to hopefully have a teaching platform over here so that teachers can actually come and do some actual outdoor classroom stuff" said church member Kristy DeVera.

Fifth graders from Lester Park Elementary have already contributed quite a bit to the garden, all while learning what it takes to build one as their teacher coordinated with builders.

"We basically put together math problems because they were working on multiplication in their class anyway and so it was a real life example. So she used some of the processes that we were going through trying to figure out how we were going to build the fence" said DeVera.

There are big plans for the future of the garden as well.

"I know we have some plum trees that are going to be going in. We're probably going to do some cute little stuff outside the fence perimeter with herbs and spices so that as people are walking through the neighborhood walking their dogs, they can grab some cilantro for dinner" said DeVera.

If you're looking for a place to grow, there are still some plots available with two of the plots even being handicap accessible.
Adding another piece to the locally grown pie.

Garden organizers say they plan on having workshops in the fall during harvest time to show people how to preserve the grown food.