Information Workshop held for local produce growers
By Nadine Whiteeyes, Reporter Sho-Pai News
On September 11, 2018 University of Nevada Cooperative Extension coordinator for the Duck Valley Chapter, Reginald Premo hosted a Tribal Hoop House & Garden and Monitoring Workshop at the Human Development Center.
Ray Johnson-Cooperative extension program Veggie expert grower was in attendance to answer questions of concern from growers on their produce problems and helpful growing ideas, some questions asked; tomatoes not turning red and staying green Ray stated “what you do is go get a damp gunny sack and hit the tomato plant that is called a shock treatment and it helps the plant in a sense wake up, also when ladybugs are around that is a very good sign due to them eating the larvae on the plants and lady bugs are your friends when gardening”.
Currently there are five actively growing, hoop houses around the valley with produce such as Cucumbers, Squash, beets, carrots, peas, corn, peppers, tomatoes, lemon cucumbers and pumpkins.
Local growers, Rhiannon Nino and Mariah Gonzales primarily care for the Hoop houses by the Head Start, year-round they put in a lot of daily work, maintaining the produce upkeep such as weed pulling and weekly fertilizing.
The produce pulled is sold at the local farmers market and is always such a huge success and many times they sell out. Seeing the joy, smiles, happiness, from the people lets them know that all their hard work and dedication is worth it and appreciated.
The future goals for the hoop house projects in our valley is to educate the people about the importance of buying local, healthy eating, teaching our people from the youth to elders how to properly grow their own vegetables and fruit, save money, and too have each and every house hold have their own hoop house too care for, grow, and maintain for years upon years of successful growing.
So far this year local growers have set up a couple farmers markets around town, with the most recent at the Our Store customer appreciation day September 7th was a huge success for them with many happy customers who had nothing but positive compliments from the awesome pricing too the size of the produce.
Normally farmers markets off the reservation are expensive due to it being organic and fresh from the fields but the local growers in the valley want to make things affordable so everyone could afford it, advertise and educate on the taste of freshness versus store bought produce and fruit.