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Getting Started With Your Garden

Do you dream of growing your own local food? Michigan is a great place to find local sources to help you get started. If you’ve got a hurdle, these local sources provide great solutions! 

Problem: I’ve gotten a late start! 

Solution: Organic plant starts from Heartwood Forest Farm

Start your garden strong with certified organically grown plant starts from Heartwood Forest Farm in Cedar! They are now accepting online pre-orders for herb, vegetable, fruit, and flower transplants that can be picked up on the farm or mailed to your door with USPS priority mail shipping. You can even add some of Heartwood botanical starts and handmade soaps to your online Sara Hardy Farmers Market order for added convenience. See what’s available here! 

Problem: I can’t find heirloom seeds!

Solution: Nature and Nurture Seeds ‘Midwest Collection’

Nature and Nurture Seeds in Dexter has you covered for all your seed needs. Celebrate the seed heritage of the Midwest with bioregional heirlooms that have deep Midwestern roots. This bountiful collection includes all of their Midwest varieties and so many favorites! Seeds may come from Michigan, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Illinois, Ohio, or North Dakota. Growing instructions are found on each seed packet and online. Pick up your packet on their website!

Problem: I don’t have space to grow!

Solution: TC Community Garden’s personal gardening plots

You can grow your own vegetables, herbs, and flowers this year at Traverse City Community Garden! Located in the beautiful historic Barns Park of the Grand Traverse Commons, TCCG empowers local residents to grow their own food by offering personal gardening plots. For $100, you will have exclusive use of ~360 square feet of gardening space this growing season, as well as access to shared tools, classes, and of course, a wonderful garden community. If you love TCCG but don’t want the commitment of a personal plot, you can still join their garden community! General membership is $25 for 2021. Learn more or sign up now on their website.  

Problem: My soil isn’t the best!

Solution: Wormie’s Vermicompost soil blends 

Wormie’s Vermicompost in West Michigan is a wonderful source for all your soil needs. Start with their seeding soil blend, POP!, to maintain ideal moisture and nutrients while protecting your plants from damping off disease. Graduate to BED, their raised bed soil blend, when you’re ready to bring your plants outside! Then, use Wormie’s vermicompost for an all-natural soil amendment to provide an extra boost for healthy plants as nature’s original fertilizer! Their wormies provide probiotics, protective enzymes, growth hormones for leaf and root growth, nutrients and beneficial microorganisms all in one soil. Find the perfect soil for your garden on their website.

What’s your favorite local source for growing a great garden? If you need more than just these tangible resources to start growing, check out the vast amount of information available from MSU Extension here.

Claire Butler is the Communications Coordinator for Taste the Local Difference. Contact her at claire@localdifference.org

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