Ypsilanti Citizen Community Sidetrack

Volunteers prepare for Ypsi PRIDE Day
By Mark Tower
May. 13, 2010   ·   7:09 a.m.

Volunteers and W.H. Canon employees plant flowers in Depot Town while Ypsilanti resident Mike Labadie repairs the planter's brick work on Ypsi PRIDE Day last year.

Each year, residents in and around the city of Ypsilanti carry on a tradition started by a group of community members enrolled in a city leadership program, a sort...read more

Bicycles zoom as flowers bloom
By Citizen staff
Apr. 30, 2010   ·   2:11 p.m.

Riders from last year's spring ride come in after a long trip. Bike Ypsi’s 2010 Spring Ride and Festival is from 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. Sunday at Recreation Park (1015 Congress Street).

The weather has turned, the trees are budding and the flowers are popping out of the ground; time for a cruise through town. But don’t be so quick to hop in the...read more

Sheriff Clayton visits Ypsilanti Township
By Mark Tower
Apr. 29, 2010   ·   12:59 p.m.

Ypsilanti Township resident Kathleen Hanadel takes notes as her and other residents attempt to asses WCSO services Tuesday evening at a community forum held at the township's community center.

About 50 Ypsilanti Township residents gave the Washtenaw County Sheriff Office their input about law enforcement in the community Tuesday evening.

The information...read more

Local photographer raising funds for Ypsi Project exhibit
By Adrienne Ziegler
Apr. 20, 2010   ·   2:20 a.m.

Ypsilanti resident Nicholas Beltsos his grandson Demetrios were photographed by Project Ypsi photographer Erica Hampton during a bike ride she took Monday. A former EMU economics professor, Beltsos and his family moved to Ypsi from Dearborn in 1967.

Ypsilanti has many faces, and Erica Hampton wants to share a few of them with you.

Over the past year, Hampton created the The Ypsi Project, a series of portraits...read more

Savoy taking shape as live music venue
By Dan DuChene
Apr. 17, 2010   ·   2:38 p.m.

Local funk band Third Coast Kings play in Ypsilanti's newest live music venue, Savoy, Friday night.

Ypsilanti's newest concert venue is preparing for its grand opening weekend April 23, more than a month after its soft opening March 13.

Formerly Club Divine,...read more

Seed Starting Squad helps community, teaches skills

Photo by David Gomez

Photos taken of Growing Hope's Seed Starting Squad at the organization's green house.
Ypsilanti Farmers Market

Growing Hope uses greenhouse to grow in winter months

By David Gomez
Mar. 11, 2010    ·    11:48 a.m.

The area surrounding Growing Hope’s greenhouse was covered in blankets of white snow.

It seems like it should be impossible for anything to grow in Michigan in February, but there it stands; a whole greenhouse with rows of freshly grown herbs in the coldest month in winter.

Growing Hope’s Seed Starting Squad is using the greenhouse to teach the community how to grow their own gardens four seed flats at a time.

Last year was the Seed Starting Squad’s first year; they had no idea the program would be so popular, according to Growing Hope volunteer Liz Etim.

“People seemed to be pouring in,” Etim said. “They wanted to help out in whatever way they could.”

Etim, who was a volunteer last year, said Growing Hope did not anticipate the community’s desire to learn gardening skills. The demand caught the staff off guard.

“Whether they were like myself on the sidelines, or actually wanting to grow things, there was just a large number of people coming through,” Etim said.

It may have been the opportunity to learn the skills to grow herbs and vegetables for themselves and Growing Hope indoors even in the harshest winters.

“I was amazed when I came in here,” Etim said. “It was cold and there was snow all over the place.”

Snow may stop some gardens from growing, but not Growing Hope’s indoor garden.

Etim said it was hard to believe when she saw the greenhouse that the Growing Hope staff could get anything to grow in such harsh winter conditions. She said it is probably part of the reason that the Seed Starting Squad is popular.

Growing Hope lets their growers borrow or buy the light stands for the seed flats. The A-frame stands are designed to hold two 4-foot shop lamps, which give the seeds the light they need to grow.

According to Growing Hope’s Web site, participants agree to grow two flats for Growing Hope and two for themselves. Once the seedlings begin to grow the participants bring them back to Growing Hope to be replanted so they can finish growing.

The seedlings which are grown for Growing Hope are distributed for free to low-income families and also sold at their spring fundraiser. The Seed Starting Squad helps needy families get nutritious food and it also teaches community members gardening skills that they will have with them for a lifetime.

But what about the cold weather conditions in the greenhouse?

“As the day progresses in here it warms up,” Etim said.

The next workday for the Seed Starting Squad is March 20. from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Registration is required. For more information contact Growing Hope at jeremy@growinghope.net.

On the Web:
Growing Hope

The Rocket

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