Gulfport garden tries to bounce back after difficult 2020

Gulfport garden tries to bounce back after difficult 2020

GULFPORT, Miss. (WLOX) - A sense of community is ripe for the picking at the 34th Street Wholistic Community Garden.

The plot of land has been offering garden space to a wide variety of people that live in the area.

“We provide an opportunity for people who don’t have places to grow on their own,” Executive Director James L. Franklin said. “We have attorneys. We have doctors. We have people that live in apartments. We have people that live in homes where they don’t have much shade.”

However, despite the long list of tenants, people have struggled to take care of the 100 plots at the garden this year.

“We actually had quite a few setbacks,” Franklin said.

The COVID-19 health crisis has kept everyone at home instead of working in the soil.

“All of them are still on lockdown. It really has been devastating to the garden." said Franklin.

While organizers deal with the impacts from the pandemic, they are also looking for workers and supplies to help clean up these plots following Hurricane Zeta.

“The green house has been devastated," Franklin said. "And a lot of the plants we had going on were toppled during the storm.”

While the garden is looking to cover more than $20,000 in damages, it’s most in need of helping hands.

“We could use the funding but also we could just use the muscle,” Franklin said.

While the road to recovery will be slow and costly, organizers said it’s all worth it.

“Once you get that bug about growing your own food, having access to fresh foods, you don’t get over it.” Franklin said.

If you want to volunteer or make a donation for the 34th Street Wholistic Community Garden, there is more information on their website and Facebook page.

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