Growing Herbs, Vegetables and People
Through generous donations from the community, Nashville Rescue Mission established a 2500 square foot “collaborative farm garden” at the women’s campus in the spring of 2012.
The farm garden design employs several types of raised bed systems used to grow food in all four seasons. It also utilizes a rainwater harvest system providing a clean and free source of water; promotes self-sufficiency; helps conserve water; is better for the plants; and is environmentally responsible.
The Seeds of Hope Garden was designed to help feed and nourish those staying at the Mission. It will also provide those in the Mission’s life-recovery program with learning opportunities in the areas of horticulture, science and cooking. Last year, volunteers from across the city helped get the garden started through building and filling the raised beds.
In the fall, volunteers, staff and clients in the Mission’s program began the hard work of planting various vegetables and herbs. Since then, the Mission’s kitchen staff has harvested collard greens, spinach, carrots, herbs and two different kinds of lettuce from the garden. Many of which have been utilized in sandwich wraps, soups and casseroles served to guests at the Mission.
Growing a Garden
The Mission is looking forward to harvesting beans, peppers, squash and other vegetables from the most recent planting. Many healthy and nutritious meals will be served with ingredients from the Seeds of Hope Garden.
“This garden is a dream come true,” said Jan Dixey, Kitchen Manager at the women’s campus. “It’s rewarding to see the fruits of our labor when we get to use herbs and vegetables from our own garden in the meals being prepared and served to our guests. It’s also a beautiful thing to see the women in our program join together with volunteers in the community to pull weeds, water plants and care for the garden. I can’t wait to see the progress in years to come.”
If you have a love or passion for gardening and would like help, call the Mission’s volunteer hotline at (615) 312-1544 or send an email for more details.