Truckee Demonstration Garden
By Master Gardener Ericka Kay
No one knows exactly when the Truckee Community Garden was started, but we do know it has been in the Truckee Regional Park for around 20 years! Despite being a well-intentioned project, the garden has suffered through many periods of inattention and neglect.
Around 2008, a group of passionate gardeners and local farm advocates organized a grassroots garden revitalization project. With several hundred dollars and a very large donation from CATT, the garden fence was built along with new garden beds and an irrigation system.
In 2010 Project MANA received a grant through Nevada County and was able to hire a part time garden manager. Having a vested employee and a bit of funding really improved the garden’s impact on the community. Its notoriety grew, participation numbers increased and food production was a success. After the grant money ran out, programming became more difficult and once again the garden suffered a lack of community engagement.
In 2014, Slow Food Lake Tahoe took over the garden and is attempting to re-envision the space once again, by changing the model from a “Community Garden" into a "Demonstration Garden." The core purpose of the space is the same as it has always been - to share gardening with our community and inspire more local gardens to thrive in our unique high-altitude climate. The mission of the Truckee Demonstration Garden is to cultivate a community committed to local food production and increased local food security, through education and demonstration of high-altitude gardening techniques.
The goals of the Demonstration Garden are to:
- Educate the community on sustainable, high-altitude gardening techniques
- Encourage food security and self-reliance by growing fresh fruit, vegetables and herbs
- Inspire the spread of more home gardens throughout the local community
- Provide food for donation and charity
- Promote a vibrant community space
The garden offers public workshops on a variety of subjects. Ericka Kay, UCCE Master Gardener managed the Demonstration Garden in 2015 and will be returning in the 2016 season to organize garden workshops and events. We are currently looking for people to present workshops in the garden.
The public is encouraged to attend garden workshops. To stay up to date on our events and workshops like us on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/truckeegarden/?fref=ts) and check out our Slow Food Lake Tahoe website.