THE GARDEN STORY

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.

LOCATION:
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.

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

The RCS Giving Garden

6/26/17

6/26/2017  
Thankful for Supportive Community!
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It’s great to have friends!  The RCS Giving Garden is happy to know others recognize the good things this garden is doing for others!  A big thanks goes out to the folks at Bergmann’s Greenhouse in Stillwater for their donation of replacement vegetable plants following the hail storm we received earlier this month.  It was so kind of you to reach out to us to see how the garden survived. Thankfully, we just lost a handful of plants that were snapped at the stem.

Thanks so very much to Kowalski’s Market in Oak Park Heights for their weekly donation of watermelons to serve to our volunteers and keep them hydrated.  We appreciate this generous healthy snack addition.  Students from Spin and Adventure Club made some thank you cards to share their appreciation!  

Thanks also to Mary L. from RCS!  She is one amazing watermelon carver, and we appreciate her willingness to prepare it for us each time we have kids in the garden.    

Our latest volunteers in action!
June 15th--Hidden Pines Ranch Day Camp 6th graders learn how to weed and plant replacement tomatoes!  We are so happy to have HPR as a weekly partner this season!
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June 19th--Adventure Club and Spin kids learn about the role HONEYBEES play in the RCS Giving Garden for National Pollinators Week!!  AJ Moses, Master Gardener and beekeeper shared his expertise with the kids.  We always love an AJ visit and know we will get to try some honey right off of a frame!  Welcome back to Victoria as she is able to help us at the garden this year again as well!  
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June 21st-- Summer Stretch teens from Stillwater area churches and Woodbury United Methodist Church.
This large group of teens banded together to tackle WEEDS, lots of WEEDS!  They took on the task of weeding sprouted straw (grrrr!) in the strawberry beds with help from MG Sandy and college volunteer Olivia. MG Eileen had kids help her weed the tomato and pepper area.  We appreciate the hard work these kids put into their morning of service.
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6/14/17

And We're Off to a Wild Weather Start in the Garden!



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Our 2017 volunteer season began with a cool, wet early spring and planting day which then led to extreme heat, wind and drought followed by strong storms and HAIL!  We are fortunate to have lost just a handful of plants unlike other charity gardens in the Twin Cities metro area. Whew! I hope others are able to find plant donations and seeds! I have a few yellow pear tomato plants leftover if anyone needs them!

~ Here’s an update on our wonderful volunteers who have visited our garden so far ~


Time for Me Early Learning Center kids learned fun facts about strawberries and helped Master Gardener Eileen and I plant bare root strawberry plants in our three newly raised strawberry beds. We may not see berries this year like the ones above from my home garden; however, in the future we should be taste testing strawberry rhubarb jam. Rhubarb, actually a vegetable like celery, is also a welcome addition to our new strawberry area!
Check out our camouflaged gray tree frog friend who decided to join in the fun!



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Supply Chain folks from Andersen Windows Corporation helped us water and plant a few additional seeds, lay landscape fabric, pressure wash and sand picnic tables and tackle the weeds in the raspberry patch.  They look better than ever!  Thanks for your help!

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Teenagers from Our Savior’s Lutheran who are part of a local Summer Stretch church service program helped us with our first harvest of the season!  One pound of radishes!  We taught them how to use hoes to scrape the soil to loosen those baby surface weeds and prevent them from becoming monsters in the blink of an eye.  The kids did a great job of thinning lettuce and herbs and hand-weeding our raised beds, too.  Come back any time and thanks for your service!


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The SPIN kids from the Stillwater Area School District came out to the garden for their first visit of the season.  Elementary kids from the SPIN and Adventure Club program will visit our garden every Monday throughout the summer.  Yesterday Master Gardener Sue and I taught the kids about Tops, Middles and Bottoms...meaning which plant parts do we eat!  They helped us identify our rows by placing picture tags on our row stakes (thanks to Stillwater Junior High student volunteer, Rachel S.) and harvested the remaining radishes for donation.  Of course, we had to taste test a few radish with salt and sugar first!  Thanks for your help kids!
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Rachel S. helping with pre-planting garden tasks.  Thanks for your service hours!
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6/2/17

Thank you to everyone that dedicated their time to help us expand our Giving Garden. We appreciate those who bundled up on this chilly day to plan various amounts of food items that will be donated to Valley Outreach located in Stillwater, MN.

If you are seeking for an opportunity to volunteer, please consider signing up!


"We can ALWAYS make a difference to someone, no matter what role we play." -Lindsey Stirling