What is AFAC Plot Against Hunger?
The Arlington Food Assistance Center (AFAC) Plot Against Hunger Program supports AFAC’s vision of providing access to nutritious food for all residents of Arlington, Virginia in need through donations of produce from local gardeners and farmers and through gleaning. The Program promotes edible gardening through schools, faith-based and community organizations. It seeks to educate AFAC clients and others to the many ways fresh produce can be sustainably grown and incorporated into a healthy diet.
Read The Arlington Sun Gazette Article About Plot Against Hunger (with video).
How To Plot Against Hunger
Start a new Plot Against Hunger this year:
Are you a church, business, group or individual with some land suitable
for a garden? Can you get a group together to maintain the garden for
the growing season? The AFAC client list has grown from last year and we
need more produce to distribute to clients. We can offer advice and
seeds. We can also send someone to talk to your group.
Follow this link for some tips on how to start a Plot Against Hunger: Gardenwriters.org how to start a garden or read about a church in Iowa
that started a garden that grows produce for their local food bank (the
second article also has useful related content to read (on the right
side of the web page)).
Contact Puwen Lee at (703) 845-8486, or send an email to: email@example.com for more information.
Plant-A-Row In Your Backyard:
Plant an extra row (or more) of vegetables in your backyard garden,or just contribute your surplus bounty to AFAC! Have herbs you're dividing? Extra tomato seedlings? We can use them! Drop off locations include AFAC (2708 South Nelson Street ) and Courthouse Farmers' Market.
What do we need most? The most popular veggies are green beans, tomatoes, eggplant, peas, peppers and squash. Any fresh produce is welcome, though -- whatever you are good at growing.
Share Your Backyard:
Do you have some unused garden space to share with other gardeners? Do you need some garden space to grow veggies? Check out the Sharing Backyards Website -- and post your garden space to share or search for available space: Share or Search in the DC Area
Volunteer for A Gleaning Event:This is a great volunteer opportunity for groups. Glean vegetables from an area farmer's field. Contact Puwen Lee at (703) 845-8486, send an email to: firstname.lastname@example.org for more information or fill out our Volunteer Form.
Volunteer at a Farmers' Market:Help pick up vegetables from a local farmers market. See our volunteer listings for details and fill out the Volunteer Form.
Volunteer Opportunities and Veggie Donations (Spring 2013)
Garden Planting Dates
2013 Gardening Talks
Gardening Talks at the Arlington Central Library: Wednesdays at 7:00 pm in the garden (tennis court side) unless otherwise noted. Join us! Click the link below to see the full schedule of talks.
The “Arlington Reads, Arlington Grows” garden at Arlington Central Library grew out of the joint initiative of the Library and AFAC Plot Against Hunger volunteers, who dug the original garden near the Library’s east entrance in May 2010. In June 2010 the garden was dedicated and containers added on the patios.
This past year, 2012, saw an expansion of the container gardens, and the addition of square-foot gardens and a shed on the patio, along with plantings on the tennis court berm and coordination with the perennial garden. From the start, this has been a cooperative and education-oriented effort
Bamboo: From Trellis To Fencing
By L.J. Crye
Central Library was hopping on Sunday and not just because it’s a great place to check out books and media. Puwen Lee had conspired with Lynn Westergren to design a fence for the part of the Library garden we call “the berm,” which borders part of the tennis courts. This area needed a little protection, but not so much that visitors would have trouble seeing the veggies growing behind. Using Arlington’s abundant free resource—bamboo—Lynn and Puwen came up with a plan that required a table saw, electric drills, wire, and bamboo in several lengths.
As is often the case with Plot Against Hunger, an amazing crew of volunteers showed up to cut, drill and assemble the fence. Kristin Thompson set about measuring and marking bamboo poles (harvested by AFAC’s “panda brigade” earlier this spring) into three lengths: 18, 21 and 24 inches.
Puwen operated the table saw, cutting the marked poles. Eddie and Janet Viveiros took the freshly cut lengths, measured again, and drilled holes in them so they could be wired together.Janet and Eddie Check an Assembly
Lynn Westergren assembled the pieces with wire that had been precut by Dick Bauder.
Once the group had three pole or brace pieces assembled, Puwen cut four 40 inch lengths for the rails of the fence and we all proceeded to the berm to see what the fence would look like installed.
Eddie and Lynn did most of the installation and decided a few adjustments in the length of the poles could be made. The fence prototype looked good; rustic, creative, and of course, made with abundant, free, local materials.
Multiple Sections of the Growing Fence...
Ball Sellers Plot Garden Participates in USDA Study
By L.J. Crye
The Plot Against Hunger Garden at Ball Sellers House is thriving this spring with a riotous radish patch, yellow onions, some romaine lettuce and row beans in the ground. They also have some crafty collards that are part of a study with the USDA that aims to defeat the horrible harlequin bug. It uses a pheromone to attract the bugs to trap plants. Gardeners then visit at least twice a week to collect the bugs and eggs from the plants, calling in the numbers collected to the USDA in a “bug report.” The idea is that the harlequin bugs will be collected in the early season, leaving the plants insect free to flourish later.
Ball Sellers House has told our gardeners that they plan to expand the space next season by about 15 feet. This will increase the amount of sunlight in parts of the garden, allowing for more plantings. Meanwhile, AFAC can expect quantities of radishes, lettuce, beans and more as the season progresses.
A Healthy Radish Patch
Romaine, Onions and More...