THE GARDEN STORY

Here at Retail Construction Services, Inc., we want to give back.

Give back not only to those in need within our community, but also the future generations of this wonderful community. What started out as a great idea has grown exponentially and has become an amazing reality. Here at the RCS Giving Garden, school groups, master gardeners, corporate volunteers, and our own employees work together for the common good of teaching children the art of gardening and the importance of healthy eating.
Click Here for Full Story.

See what else RCS and the Giving Garden are up to:

Like Us on Facebook & Follow Us on Twitter


The RCS Giving Garden

The RCS Giving Garden

9/27/16

9/21/16 RAIN, RAIN, RAIN!


Rain has made watering the garden very easy this summer, but it hasn’t made volunteer sessions in the garden so simple!  These swallowtail butterfly caterpillars munching happily on our parsley were the only live critters who got their photo taken earlier this week.  We human critters from Trillium and Daylily Garden Clubs and the Washington County Master Gardener program worked hard to harvest and get out of the downpour.  Hence, no photos!  Thanks, ladies!
IMG_4138.JPG
IMG_4139.JPG
Yukon Gold and French Fingerling potatoes ready for donation!


9/14/16
Washington County Horticulture Society members come out to the garden for the first time!
Thank you, Chuck, for your master soybean shucking, and thank you to Joan and Helen for grabbing all those tomatoes!  We picked 47 pounds of produce together.
IMG_4084.JPG

9/9/16  
Willis Insurance Agency volunteers help harvest 150 pounds!
Thanks for making the drive to Lake Elmo!  You are much appreciated for giving of your time on a soggy morning.

IMG_4059.JPG
IMG_4062.JPGIMG_4061.JPG
IMG_4057.JPGIMG_4058.JPG

9/9/16

Tomato Sauce, Salsa, Tomato-Basil Pizza, Roasted Tomatoes, Caprese Salad, TOMATOES-A-PLENTY!

9/8/16
Tomato Sauce, Salsa, Tomato-Basil Pizza, Roasted Tomatoes, Caprese Salad, TOMATOES-A-PLENTY!
Don’t you wish our window of fresh tomato-picking could go a wee bit longer?  We wait and wait for tiny seeds to germinate in April, then transplant the seedlings into the garden when the soil warms, watch for buds in June, spy green fruit turn to red (or yellow or orange or purple…)in August to FINALLY being able to release them from their vines now!  Soon the waiting game will begin again.  Enjoy while you can!
20160829_132317_resized.jpg
IMG_3959.JPGIMG_3960.JPG
Victoria and Elise making Pizza Margherita for the RCS staff with tomatoes and basil from the garden.


8/22/16 Garden Friends
IMG_3951.JPGIMG_3952.JPG
Evan, King of the Corn Smut!
Thankfully, we only found two cobs with this interesting fungus.
IMG_3953.JPG
Field of Dreams?
IMG_3955.JPGIMG_3956.JPG
Cucumbers and Radish (our second planting!)


8/31/16 Andersen Windows Corporation Volunteers
When the kids go back to school, we rely on corporate volunteers to help us continue the harvest.  I forget just how much work a group of adults can accomplish!  Thanks for helping to pull some weeds and harvest 79 pounds of food!  
IMG_3987.JPG
IMG_3984.JPGIMG_3985.JPG


9/2/16 John and Janet Luoma
My in-laws came out to the garden to see where they can find me most days in the summer.  John was particularly fond of the pepper varieties!  He is very excited to try some extra special, extra spicy salsa thanks to Bob.  
IMG_3992.JPGIMG_3994.JPG

8/23/16

“38% of our clients are children”

8/22/16
 
IMG_3877.JPG


As I dropped off produce to Valley Outreach last week, I couldn’t help but freeze in my tracks when I saw this postcard.  We are so happy we can help provide fresh fruit and veggies to stock the shelves for our communities’ families in need of grocery assistance.  This garden season we have had the pleasure of working with hundreds of volunteers, mostly kids, and we don’t always know their stories.  Are their bellies full?  Do they have access to fresh produce?  This is why we now are offering kids the choice of taking home a bag filled with a few veggies to share with their families.  They are so excited to be able to pick some to keep and some to share!  
IMG_3827.JPGIMG_3830.JPG



8/15/15  Adventure Club’s last visit for the season!


IMG_3826.JPGIMG_3816.JPG
IMG_3818.JPG
Eggplant kissing!?
IMG_3824.JPG
This banana pepper grew a curl just like our volunteer’s hair!
IMG_3811.JPG
The broccoli keeps coming!
IMG_3814.JPGIMG_3812.JPG
Checking out the Sunflower House
IMG_3809.JPG
Squash Bugs!  YUK!
IMG_3825.JPG
We made ‘fancy appetizers!”  
Cherry tomatoes, fresh basil, mozzarella pearls layered on toothpicks and drizzled with olive oil and sea salt--delicious!
IMG_3835.JPG
Master Gardeners Kathy and Sue say goodbye for 2016
IMG_3841.JPG
Bye kids!  Enjoy the rest of your summer!  We are grateful for your enthusiasm and helping hands!




8/17/16  Time For Me Kids Check on Their Sunflower House!
IMG_3872.JPG
Almost touching the sky!
IMG_3853.JPGIMG_3860.JPG
IMG_3863.JPGIMG_3862.JPG
Tea Party in the shady Sunflower House!
IMG_3847.JPGIMG_3849.JPG
IMG_3850.JPGIMG_3848.JPG
Crazy Plants!  Some have ponytails (Amaranth) and some are shy to touch (Sensitive Plant).  Master Gardener Sue helped the kids pot up some extra to take home!  Thanks Master Gardener Dave for sharing!
IMG_3867.JPGIMG_3869.JPG
Everyone took home tomatoes!
IMG_3873.JPG
Picking pears!
IMG_3874.JPG
Watermelon popsicles!
Come back and see the sunflowers soon!




8/19/16  Garden Friends harvest 110 pounds!
IMG_3894.JPGIMG_3891.JPG
Gypsy Peppers and Green Beans


IMG_3893.JPGIMG_3895.JPG
Muddy veggies need a little scrubbing!
Bree, our frequent Friday volunteer, and Sydney washing cabbage and onions.
Elise and Connie doing some radish cleaning.
Not pictured, but vital to this harvest--Master Gardener Deb!
IMG_3889.JPGIMG_3910.JPG
The LaFontaine family and puppy Agate came back to help!  He likes pears!  I had great difficulty getting any work completed today with this little guy around.  Amy, Caden, Addie and Anna come back year after year.  Thanks to you!
IMG_3912.JPG
60 pounds of fresh ‘Peaches and Cream’ Sweet Corn heading into Valley Outreach!
Thanks to my dear friend, Connie, for your visit from “Egypt (Lake Minnetonka area!).”  Thanks to frequent volunteers Elise and Sydney for continuing to help each year!