Urban garden takes local food from farm to fork - WBTV 3 News, Weather, Sports, and Traffic for Charlotte, NC

Urban garden takes local food from farm to fork

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CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - In the shadow of the Charlotte skyline, there's a small community garden called Seigle Farm that's growing some beautiful produce in an area where fresh food is hard to come by.

Places like the Belmont neighborhood where the garden is located are called "food deserts," or places that don't have access to fresh, healthy food nearby.

The garden started when uptown Charlotte's Harvest Moon Grille made a deal with Seigle Avenue Presbyterian Church. The restaurant teaches the community how to grow fresh, healthy food; the church puts in the elbow grease.

"It's growing continually," said project coordinator Lillie Marshall. "They're very excited. They're working really hard. Usually on Saturdays you can see them out here harvesting.

Just a few minutes after the produce is picked, it makes its way from the garden to the kitchen at Harvest Moon.

Harvest Moon buys the majority of Seigle Farm's herbs and vegetables. The restaurant has purchased 500 pounds of produce since the project first began in the spring.

For now, the money the church earns goes back into the farm, but Marshall says the garden could turn into a revenue stream for the church in the future. Harvest Moon is hoping to start up a farmer's market to give the community more access to fresh food. In the meantime, the garden serves as an educational tool.

"The way we look at it, this is helping everybody," said executive chef Patty Greene. "It helps the people in the community because they learn something about where their food is coming from. It teaches them to eat clean food and local, healthy food. No hormones, no antibiotics. Then it helps us because we purchase the food from the garden."

One major perk that hasn't yet been mentioned: the fresh food tastes delicious.

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