working in garden

Hartford County Master Gardener Coordinator Sarah Bailey and a Master Gardener volunteer work in Burgdorf. Photo: Chris Defrancesco.

Burgdorf Community Garden is a signature outreach project for Hartford County Master Gardener volunteers. They helped plant and maintain a garden on the grounds of the Burgdorf/Bank of America Health center, a clinic for the underserved in Hartford’s North End. The garden is used to teach nutrition to clients and also provides healthy produce for residents living in a food desert. Along with keeping the garden healthy and productive, Master Gardeners also helped educate area residents about the ability to grow their own healthy food, even with limited space.

In 2014, two Hartford County Master Gardeners worked on the Burgdorf Clinic project with medical students and other clinic volunteers for approximately 125 hours.

The garden opened on June 3rd in 2015, and six Master Gardeners participated. Early work included new soil and weeding. Planting will include tomatoes, beans, greens peppers, herbs, and callaloo.

UConn Extension Master Gardeners work in communities across the state on gardening projects. For instance, through the Gardening Initiative in Vegetable Education (GIVE) program, there are 19 schools with vegetable gardens in Stamford. The model community garden at Middlesex County Extension Center delivers fresh produce to community food banks and soup kitchens. New London County Master Gardeners work with adults with disabilities at Camp Harkness in Waterford. Master Gardeners in Tolland County are teaching students to garden at Natchaug Hospital. Windham County Master Gardeners work with People’s Harvest of Pomfret to donate produce from the garden to local soup kitchens.