The Gardens

Donate Time

Donate Money

Donate Produce

Orchards

The Gardens

 

Seed2Need is a non-profit organization dedicated to growing produce for local food pantries and soup kitchens in Bernalillo and Sandoval counties. Comprised entirely of volunteers, Seed2Need is a community garden in Corrales, New Mexico, cultivated by the community for donation to the community.

 

Seed2Need will be planting three gardens in 2015, totaling approximately 2 acres. All of the gardens are located in Corrales on land donated by local homeowners. Crops include tomatoes, cucumbers, watermelons, cantaloupe, green chile, carrots, green beans and zucchini. We have added to the orchard at the Lynn garden and planted an orchard around the Seed2Need greenhouse on Corrales Road. In total we have approximately 3/4 acre with 140 trees, including apple, peach, pear, and cherry.

 

The harvest at the gardens begins in late July, usually with green beans as the first donation. The tomatoes start producing heavily in August, with August and September generating the heaviest overall yield.

 

17 local food pantries and soup kitchens schedule with us, picking up directly from the gardens, which guarantees that their patrons receive fresh, farmer's market quality produce. During peak harvest Roadrunner Food Bank sends a truck for tomato overflow, distributing far beyond our 17 local pantries.

Donate Time

 

Seed2Need is a community garden by the community for the community. We rely on assistance from church groups, scout troops, school groups, individuals and corporate community service groups to help us plant, maintain, and harvest the gardens. Everyone involved is volunteering their time and skill. Participating in projects like Seed2Need allows you to assist others in your community in a very direct, hands-on manner. Your effort will provide fresh, nutritious produce to local families in need. It is a great way to meet people within the community and to learn gardening techniques from Sandoval County Master Gardeners. All assistance is appreciated, whether the commitment is short term or long term. Email Seed2Need@gmail.com to be added to the mailing list regarding planting, maintenance, and harvest work sessions.

 

Due to the unpredictable nature of volunteer turnout, we ask that larger groups let us know when they plan to help at the gardens. That will allow us to prepare for the work session and to schedule groups on different days to maximize what we can accomplish. Peak harvest tends to occur between mid August and the first week of September, with 8000-12,000 pounds harvested per week. This tends to be the most rewarding part of the process for volunteers; however, the interminable weeding of June and July are what make the garden productive.

 

A hat, sunscreen, gloves, long sleeve shirt, and pants are suggested. We provide water and have bug repellent.

Donate Money

 

Seed2Need is run entirely by volunteers. We need donations to continue to operate and expand our mission of fighting hunger in New Mexico. Seed2Need is a qualified 501(c)(3). Donations are tax deductible.

 

We receive donations from many sources, in a number of ways.  We are set up with PayPal.  If your employer, or place of business, donates charitable contributions to United Way, Seed2Need is registered with them. You can request that your contributions be directed towards our project.

 

We participate in Amazon Smile. If you shop at Amazon.com, please opt for Smile.Amazon.com where you will be prompted to choose a charity (Seed2Need). A small portion of your purchase will be donated to Seed2Need whenever you order from Amazon.

 

Checks and money orders can be sent to:

Seed2Need

PO Box 874

Corrales, NM 87048

 

Please include your name and mailing address to receive a donation acknowledgment.

Donate Produce

 

Fresh produce is a difficult commodity for food pantries to supply, because it often spoils quickly. With the drought pushing produce prices higher, food pantries need all of the help they can get. Donating your extra vegetables to a food pantry in your community makes a big difference to the families that rely on the pantries for assistance. Every vegetable gardener tends to have a few things growing that produce excessively at some point during the season. Once you have overwhelmed friends, family, and co-workers with zucchini, and other abundance from your garden, you are welcome to drop off your excess produce to the gardens on Tuesday, Thursday or Saturday morning from 7-9 am. Food pantries pick up from the gardens, which means your donation will be distributed to those who need it immediately.

 

If you have excess fruit in your orchards or fields, please contact us to arrange a time for gleaning. We are trying to coordinate with local Boy Scouts to cover gleaning opportunities that arise, because it can be difficult to recruit enough volunteers to cover the gardens and gleaning simultaneously. We need at least a couple of weeks to recruit volunteers, particularly for large orchards where scheduling with Roadrunner Food Bank or multiple food pantries is necessary.

 

New Mexico is currently #1 for childhood food insecurity and #2 for adults. Together we can reduce hunger in New Mexico one garden at a time.

Orchards

 

Over the last two seasons we have replaced the dead trees in the orchard around the Lynn garden and planted an orchard around the Seed2Need greenhouse on Corrales Road. Keep New Mexico Beautiful provided us with a grant to purchase the trees. An Eagle Scout candidate rounded up volunteers to plant them. Though it will be a few more years before we derive benefit from the orchard, the trees represent an investment in the future of this project. They will generate tons of fresh fruit, providing variety to what we donate to the pantries.

 

We are also available to glean fruit from local orchards as time and volunteer availability allow. Whereas we are appreciative of the many requests received, often we are unable to accept every offer due to limited volunteer availability and equipment. Many of our 'core' volunteers are senior citizens, which makes ladders a perilous prospect in terms of liability. As of 2015, we are receiving additional assistance from local Boy Scouts troops. Our goal is to help other groups coordinate the gleaning separately from the gardens so we can accept more of the fruit donations offered.

 

If you would like to donate fruit from your trees, please contact us. We will need at least two weeks notice to arrange for volunteers and equipment, particularly as the gardens hit peak harvest in August and September. Everything harvested is donated to local food pantries and soup kitchens. For larger orchards we need additional time to arrange for Roadrunner Food Bank to pick up.

Volunteering

Seed2Need is reliant on volunteers. Unlike many non-profit endeavors, this project often requires strenuous manual labor, sweat, scrapes, and dirt. Throughout the season hundreds of people come out to help, young and old, from all walks of life, unified by the common desire to have a positive impact on society. For more information or directions, please contact Seed2Need@gmail.com.

 

As a reminder to new and regular volunteers, hats, sunscreen, long sleeves shirts and pants are recommended. Whereas shorts, t-shirts and tank tops are comfortable and cool, many people have unexpected reactions to some of the plants (both weeds and vegetables). There are also a variety of insects that may bite or sting, including bees, ants, wasps, spiders, and other common garden inhabitants.

The videos below provide a general introduction and information regarding planting techniques and tips. If you will be helping us plant the gardens, please consider watching the videos. For newcomers the video explains how we do things and why, which will help avoid many of the common mishaps that occur during the mayhem of planting. For regular volunteers the video will provide a reminder of what to watch for during planting. The gardens are so big that it takes a lot of people supervising and answering questions for things to go smoothly.

Seed2Need Stories
Planting 2015
 

With three gardens spanning almost three acres, it takes an army of volunteers  to get everything planted quickly. With the assistance of eagle scouts, and hundreds of volunteers, thousands of seeds and seedlings are planted within three hours in mid May.

Seed2Need Orientation
Planting Tips
 

This video doesn't cover all of the details, but we covered the highlights of how deep seedlings should be planted and the many steps associated with planting tomatoes properly and covering them with Agribon.

Seed2Need Stories
NMSU Master Gardener Project
 

NMSU put together a video about Seed2Need. They interviewed several of our volunteers as well as several members of the staff at St. Felix Food Pantry. St. Felix, in Rio Rancho, has been working with Seed2Need from the beginning and we are happy that our work is making a difference for their clients.

Sometimes we have amazing turnout. The photos on Facebook can be misleading. Usually photos are indicative of having enough volunteers to hold a camera rather than a shovel. Usually we need more volunteers, particularly when there is weeding to do or several crops to harvest. The more people we have each time, the more we can get accomplished quickly, without wearing anyone out. We want everyone to enjoy themselves, to meet some people, to learn a few things and to come back...often. The individuals who come regularly, for multiple seasons, are invaluable. They understand the process from beginning to end and can help explain to newcomers how and why we do things. We rely on returning volunteers to help first time participants.

 

The calendar below is linked to our Google account. It will be updated regarding work session cancellations as well as reflecting community groups scheduled to help. The goal is to provide insight to both volunteers, and volunteer groups, about last minute weather cancellations as well as our day to day volunteer coverage. This information will also be posted to Facebook and Twitter. If you would like to schedule a volunteer group of 8 or more, please contact Seed2Need@gmail.com.

Calendar

Work sessions are occasionally canceled due to weather. If you are concerned about a

work session, please check the calendar here or see our Facebook page.

Donations are invested in the field

 

You can send donations to:

PO Box 874

Corrales, NM 87048

Testimonials

Get Involved

Donate Money. Donate Time.

Seed2Need is almost 100% volunteer staffed. The exception? Interns. As of 2015 we decided to hire two interns to help schedule and supervise orchard gleaning and to help keep the gardens maintained, particularly during weeding season when temperatures rise and enthusiasm wanes. Recently graduated high school students with 4H background and agriculture/horticulture students are encouraged to apply. Knowing how to drive a tractor is a plus.

 

We have two primary initiatives: the gardens and harvesting fruit from local orchards. The need for more volunteers is a constant as we continue to grow in scope.  It takes a lot of people to pick an acre of tomatoes in two hours or to harvest 50 fruit trees. If you would like to get involved, please join our mailing list. We do not send spam. Typically we start sending emails in the spring as we prepare to plant. To be involved prior to May, please email Seed2Need@gmail.com.

 

We would not be able to do this project without financial support from the community and local businesses. Please consider including us in your charitable contributions this year. We accept funds via United Way, PayPal, and post: PO Box 874, Corrales, NM 87048. We also participate in AmazonSmile, where a non-profit is designated to receive a small portion of all of your Amazon purchases.

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