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« A trickle-down system that actually works | Main | Rediscovering myself through the Wilkes Creative Writing Program »
Saturday
Jul112015

When your garden offers up a zucchiNADO...

Zucchini I harvested on 7/11

This spring, I added well-seasoned manure to my backyard garden while turning the soil over. Nature then delivered a mother lode of rain and sunshine. I had a couple zucchini coming during each of the last two weeks, perhaps one squash a week, which was manageable. This morning I checked in on my garden to see what I could harvest, and I discovered . . . a zucchiNADO!

Yes, a ZucchiNADO. In one week.

My husband suggested he hold up one of the squash so readers could see how humongous these vegetables are.

One of the zucchini from my backyard garden as displayed by my husbandIn case you are wondering why they weren't harvested sooner, this is what the weather was like Thursday after work:

While I have a host of great zucchini recipes thanks to friends and neighbors, which I shared earlier on this blog, there's no way I can prepare and serve all this fresh zucchini before it spoils. Thank goodness I have another option. And chances are likely, you do, too.

I am donating this squash to a food pantry that accepts fresh produce which I located on the AmpleHarvest.org website. AmpleHarvest.org has worked fervently to identify food pantries that can accept fresh produce to supplement all the canned and boxed food typically donated.

I entered my zip code into their engine and found four pantries within a 15-mile radius that will take these zucchini. One is right down the road at a church in Akron.

AmpleHarvest is the brainchild of master gardener and self-described aging geek Gary Oppenheimer, who noticed how much food was left in a community garden he managed. He created AmpleHarvest.org to connect backyard gardeners with excess produce with food pantries, who were previously limited to canned and processed food only. 

If last year is any indication of this year, I can expect to have a green beanNADO and a tomatoNADO, too. I am determined not to let this food rot on the vine, but to give to food pantries to share with people who need food.

ZucchiNADO, you've (finally) met your match. And I'm feeling really good about not being wasteful with good, healthful food I've grown.

 

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