As many local green-thumb enthusiasts can attest to, maintaining a thriving garden in Phoenix during the summer can be a huge challenge. The high temperatures are not only a threat to the plants, but they also mean gardeners are spending less time outside watering their plants.
St. Vincent de Paul’s Urban Farm is not immune to these challenges. We are fortunate and grateful for the hundreds of volunteers who work hard year-round to keep our soil and produce hydrated and healthy. Because of their dedication, last year we harvested 40,000 pounds of fresh produce! This produce was distributed to our dining rooms, helping to feed thousands of families and individuals in need.
While looking for a way to give back to the community, local landscaping company, Creative Environments, saw the potential in the farm and fostered a new partnership through a very generous donation – an automated irrigation system.
Donating both the labor and resources, Creative Environments says this is the first charity they have partnered with and knew it would be a great fit. The donated project is valued at $50,000 and is currently being installed.
“We’ll be going from 100 percent hand-watering and sprinklers to an in-ground irrigation system,” says Dave Smith, SVdP urban farm director. “This will save hundreds of hours of labor every year that can be used for planting, harvesting and improving the garden.”
Dave estimates that this project, along with a brand-new donated Bobcat, will increase SVdP’s fresh produce harvest by a couple of hundred pounds a week. This increased amount will ultimately be able to feed more families in need.
Creative Environments owner, Dan Waters, and Director of Landscape Architecture, Doug Prouty, are excited to see how this new partnership will continue after the project is complete.
“Creative Environments is proud to support St. Vincent de Paul and its mission to give back healthy organically grown fresh produce to the community. We look forward to learning and growing more through this great cause.”
Are you a gardener looking for tips on how to keep a thriving garden during the summer? SVdP’s resident gardener, Tony Kasowski, shares six summer gardening tips, including what types of produce to plant. Read these summer gardening tips today!