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Resources for Home and Community Food Growing
- Home and Garden Information Center (HGIC) – A project of the University of Maryland Extension, the site contains loads of good information, with excellent photos for diagnosis of plant disease and pest problems; free expert gardening advice available by phone (but make sure to read the relevant online material first!)
- Grow It Eat It – Also a project of the UMD Extension, this is the website of the MD Master Gardener’s food growing program, with more excellent information including descriptions of the most common garden pests and helpful videos on numerous food gardening methods
- BugGuide.net – A great site for finding pictures of all insects, both pests and beneficials
- Montgomery County Backyard Chickens – The backyard chicken movement is sweeping the nation, and there is no source of fresher, cheaper eggs than from chickens you raise yourself; this site gives great information and resources on how to do it, while advocating for backyard chickens in Montgomery County
- Montgomery County Beekeepers Association – Bees are an essential partner in the living world, and especially the food chain, as they pollinate between ¼ and ⅓ of all the food we eat; the MC Beekeepers Association is devoted to better beekeeping in Maryland
Locating Fresh, Local Food in Montgomery County
- Montgomery County Farmers Markets – From the Montgomery County Department of Economic Development, a complete list of farmers markets in the county, with addresses, hours, days and dates of operation
- Community Supported Agriculture – CSA’s are a great way to support local farms, buying “shares” in exchange for weekly deliveries of fresh produce: this is a list of CSAs in Montgomery County, or that deliver to Montgomery County, courtesy of the Montgomery Countryside Alliance
- Agricultural Reserve Guide – The Montgomery County Agricultural Reserve hasbeen called the country’s most successful farmland protection program near an urban area; check out this interactive guide to farms in the Ag Reserve, courtesy (again) of the Montgomery Countryside Alliance
- Restaurants and Retail Outlets – A listing of area restaurants and grocers featuring local produce, courtesy (one last time!) of the Montgomery Countryside Alliance
- Maryland’s Best – A regularly updated listing of the best of local food products, including produce, seafood, grains, nursery items and more, from Maryland producers
Montgomery County School Food Gardens
In 2011 Montgomery County Public Schools (MCPS) adopted a policy allowing edible school gardens, after a campaign that Montgomery Victory Gardens helped lead. (See Advocacy Page). MVG continues to work with Audubon Naturalist Society, Master Gardeners, Whole Foods and other organizations to create and nurture school vegetable gardens and food growing education in MCPS schools.
Click here for a current list of Montgomery County public schools with vegetable gardens; if you are interested in starting an edible garden at your school, check out the MCPS Smith Environmental Education Center website, and/or contact us at email@example.com
Audubon Naturalist Society runs an excellent “Salad Science” instructional series, utilizing salad tables (and salad parties!), as part of their GreenKids program in MCPS schools – more than 3,000 students have experienced this program in the past three years; for more information, click here.
On-Farm Agricultural Education
There are few better ways to learn about growing food (apart from an MVG-led community garden tour!) then by visiting an operating local farm. The following farms in our county provide programs for young people, some of them for MCPS Student Service Learning Credit: