Growing locally

A bad economy has, at least in the garden, led to a resurgence in people learning to grow things. “We’re seeing a lot more people coming in who are interested in growing their own edibles to save money,” said Julianne Klasen-Daoud, manager at The Phantom Gardener in Rhinebeck and consultant for The Tree Center. “It’s really exciting.”

She’s seeing an uptick in people turning over the grass in their lawns to devote space to vegetable gardens. She also reports a big change in attitude toward what they’re putting on those young plants. “When we first opened 20 years ago, it was something really new to be completely organic in the products we used for fertilizer and pest control,” Klasen-Daoud said. “Five or ten years ago, we started having people coming in asking specifically for just that. It’s not a trend, it’s a way of life.”

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