Submitted by Twin Transit

What is “Vegetables in a Bucket?” It’s how Twin Cities Rotary is helping feed Lewis County seniors in need.

On May 23, seven Twin Cities Rotarians gathered to fill 100 five-gallon buckets with a mixture of dirt and mulch. They planted each bucket with tomato and strawberry starts, along with bean, pea, radish, and carrot seeds.

The first round of planting was completed in less than two hours but more was yet to come. When Chehalis Walmart heard about the project, they pitched in several flats of tomato, lettuce, herb, zucchini and squash starts, along with dozens of seed packets, soil and fertilizer. With their strong community support and a second round of volunteer planting, the vegetable buckets promise a robust harvest for those in need.

Rotary members will cultivate the buckets through the end of the month. Once they’re ready, the Vegetable Buckets will be distributed to local seniors, who will benefit from their fresh produce all summer long.

“This was a wonderfully collaborative effort,” said Rotary member Dave Campbell. “We are so thankful to JP Anderson for donating the dirt; Arnold Haberstroh for the trailer, mulch and pea gravel; Jennifer Penfold for keeping the tomato starts; Joe Clark for obtaining additional starts; Mark Bolender for providing stakes; Mike Crouse for the strawberry starts; and Helga Broderson for donating tomato cages.”

The Vegetable Bucket program hearkens back to the Victory Gardens of WWII. Like this important piece of our history, Vegetable Buckets will help alleviate hunger, relieve COVID-related economic insecurity, cultivate self-sufficiency, and engage seniors in an exciting new way. Moreover, the project shows that when we work together, there’s no limit to what we can grow.

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