Community Garden

The Highlands community is a generous one, always going the extra mile to see that everyone is taken care of. One of the most recent additions is the Community Garden, benefitting the Food Pantry of Highlands.

Executive Director Marty Rosenfield was approached by Dr. Sue Aery with a unique idea of how to bring fresh produce to the pantry – Tower Gardens. Tower Gardens are vertical, free-standing towers that use aeroponic technology to grow a wide variety of produce.

While not familiar with the technology, Rosenfield said, “As you know, anything that can make an impact on my available food for distribution at the Pantry is worth taking a serious look at.” 

Thanks to the partnership of Highlands United Methodist Church, the International Friendship Center, private donations, and the dedication of Dr. Aery, the Highlands Community Garden has become a reality.

Dr. Aery explains that the magic of the tower garden is that it uses 90 percent less land and 90 percent less water than traditional gardens. Aeroponic means that the roots are suspended in the air part of the time and they are bathed in water part of the time. The tonic enriches the plants and the produce is plentiful in a very short time. 

It is a volunteer effort and so far they have been able to donate over 70 pounds of lettuce in just six weeks from the towers located across from Dusty’s on Dillard Road. Folks are needed to maintain the towers, harvest, and deliver produce and Rosenfield would like to see additional community members volunteer to help with pantry operations.

If you are interested in joining the passionate network of volunteers contact Marty Rosenfield at (828) 526-9828  or Andrea Smith at the International Friendship Center office in the Peggy Crosby Center at (828) 526-0890. For monetary donations, please make checks payable to IFC/Food Pantry. Those may be sent to The International Friendship Center, 348 South Fifth Street, Highlands NC 28741.