Retail Construction Services, Inc. is dedicated to giving back.

We 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.

Retail Construction Services, Inc.
11343 39th Street N.
Lake Elmo, MN 55042

From HWY 36 - go south on Lake Elmo Ave, turn left onto 39th Street, garden is at corner of 39th and Laverne.
From HWY 5- going west from Stillwater take right onto Laverne (near Fury dealership) garden is on the right at corner of Laverne and 39th street.

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The RCS Giving Garden

The RCS Giving Garden


Wednesday in the Giving Garden

Click on any photo to enlarge
Another team from Woodbury Peaceful Grove United Methodist’s summer stretch program helped today in the giving garden. 

With the summer sunshine and plentiful rain, the plants are growing fast and so are the weeds.  It was a good day to get down on hands and knees to go after the weeds in the tomatoes, pinch back the sucker shoots and mulch with shredded office paper. 

What is a tomato sucker?  (click to open lesson)

A tomato sucker is a smallish shoot that grows
out of the joint where a branch on the tomato plant meets a stem.  These small shoots will grow into a full sized branch if left alone, which results in a bushier, more sprawling tomato plant. Because of this, many people
like to remove tomato suckers from the tomato plant. Removing the shoots also helps divert the plants energy into producing tomatoes instead of more vegetation.
Quick work in the tomato garden by our volunteers, Dave, Catie and Leta let us move on to the root vegetable crops.   Thanks for your willing hands!

Thinning rutabagas and turnips

The rutabagas, turnips and kohlrabies are about 4 inches high – the perfect size for thinning.  A spacing of 2 to 4 inches allows for the roots to fully develop without crowding.  We transplanted some of the small seedlings to fill in areas of the row that had not germinated as well.  A garden taste test of the thinned vegetables proved they were tender and flavorful even though they were tiny.   We thought later that we should have saved the turnip greens for salads and will remember that for next year.

Can you name this vegetable?

It’s broccoli!  Whether you love broccoli or hate it, it is one of the healthiest vegetables, easy to cook and high in vitamin C and A.  Broccoli is a member of the cabbage family and has large flower heads, usually green in color, arranged on branches sprouting from a thick, edible stalk.   We didn't see any insects in the broccoli this time but will keep our eyes out for cabbage caterpillars that might try to eat up the broccoli before we get to harvest time.
-  Contributing writer, Deb Lynch, Master Gardener