MU Community Gardener Carol Fornwald (left) just delivered fresh produce to Debbie Keszler, food pantry coordinator of the Reformation Community Food Pantry at the Reformation Lutheran Church in West Long Branch.
West Long Branch: Monmouth University’s Community Garden exceeded its harvesting goal and donated 2,238 pounds of fresh produce to local organizations and individuals in need.
The local agencies that benefited include Lutheran Church of the Reformation Food Pantry in West Long Branch, Soup D’Shore at St. Luke’s Methodist Church in Long Branch, the Long Branch Senior Center, the Ronald McDonald House in Long Branch, and American Recreational Military Services (ARMS).
The garden is located on University-owned land between Beechwood and Brookwillow Avenues in West Long Branch. MU had its first planting season in April 2010. Last year the harvest was about 1,200 pounds. But this season’s harvest marked the largest donation of fresh produce to the community. The original goal of 1,500 pounds was far exceeded.
The garden is shared by neighbors from West Long Branch and other nearby towns who enjoy growing and using their fresh produce. With the harvest time still in progress, garden organizers report that they have fall crops, including rutabaga, red beets, and green beans, to harvest and donate through October.