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The Big Garden sees rise in customers due to pandemic

Posted at 6:19 PM, May 16, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-16 19:24:48-04

OMAHA, Neb. (KMTV) — One impact of the coronavirus response is an increase in gardening.

An Omaha nonprofit is doing its part to help people grown their own food.

Those with The Big Garden say demand is on the rise.

With so many people at home due to physical distancing, a growing number of people are getting into gardening.

One major benefit -- they can grow their own foods.

"This year, the numbers have been half than they were last year," The Big Garden Executive Director Nathan Morgan said.

Morgan tells 3 News Now The Big Garden is a nonprofit teaching low income kids and adults how to grow, cook and preserve their own food.

"Normally we do lots of education in schools that's come to a halt this spring and for the summer too so that's why we've shifted to a whole lot to more food production," Morgan said.

Morgan reports an influx of customers over the past month.

Saturday, The Big Garden host its final transplant sale, which raises money to support their education program.

"We partner with schools, with community organizations with churches," he said. "We've got about 170 gardens in our network in three states (about half of them in Omaha) and we do lots of education with those ... the plant sale is a fundraiser for that."

Morgan tells 3 News Now some of the food they grow is donated to local food pantries.

"The lines at food pantries are out the door, every day," Morgan said. "So all the food that you see, all the plant in the gardens that you see growing here ... a lot food that we're growing in the greenhouses, that's all being donated to homeless shelters and food pantries around the city."

He says The Big Garden will offer online education in the fall for students wanting to learn more about how to ground and sustain food.

Th Big Garden will no longer have in person plant sale, but online ordering will be offered starting next week.