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Seed to Table in six weeks lecture on tap

By Staff | Feb 11, 2011

Local businesses will sponsor a lecture series featuring acclaimed “kitchen garden” expert Shepherd Ogden to educate the public on home vegetable gardening.

Ogden, a professor at Shepherd University who teaches sustainable agriculture, is a nationally recognized organic gardening pro who has published five books on vegetable gardening and between 50 and 100 articles on gardens and horticulture and its environmental impact.

Ogden will share his formula for building home “kitchen gardens” with local residents over the next six weeks. Participants will “get step-by-step instructions on how they start a garden,” he said.

Widely known across the country, pictures of a flourishing veggie garden Ogden built in Topton, Pa., as an experiment in using his own techniques, have been published in national publications like “The American Gardner” magazine and “Martha Stewart Living.”

Ogden said the event is meant to encourage any and everyone to get back to the basics of food production by learning how to plant and tend to home vegetable gardens in lieu of buying produce grown on large industrial farms.

Peter Corum, an event sponsor and the branch manager at Franklin American Mortgage Company in Shepherdstown, is championing Ogden’s cause.

Corum, who describes himself as a community activist, got involved in the Seed to Table project out of a personal interest in eco-consciousness and promoting sustainability.

According to Corum, who lives just outside of Shepherdstown on his own farm, “We have to home grow talent”

“Jefferson County has a lot of resources in people.” he said.

In Corum’s opinion, promoting and educating consumers about sustainable living takes talented people, like Ogden, willing to reach out to the rest of the community and share ideas.

“We need rock stars. Shepherd is a rock star of organic gardening,” he said.

For Ogden each individual home garden helps contribute to a larger environment and the experience of planting one’s own fruits and veggies is “really about getting us to take control of the food supply again.”

He said the event will inform participants of “how to grow the most food in the least space over the longest time … with the least effort.”

The course will begin Feb. 15 from 7 to 8 p.m. and will continue every Tuesday evening through March 22.

The event is held at the Bavarian Inn. Single tickets are $20 and can be purchased at the event. A ticket for the entire series is $100.

Those interested in participating can reserve a spot by calling 304-876-1658. More information about the event can be found at www.yourfreedomgarden.com.