Girl planting in the garden

Planting carrots at the Milbridge Commons

While May seemed colder than usual, June brought with it the heat! We closed the month with several days in the low nineties and not quite enough rain. Still the IEM Gardens at the Red Barn Motel and the Milbridge Commons are thriving and bountiful. All sorts of greens, radishes, snap peas, and herbs are ready for picking. Just follow the green “Pick” and red “Don’t Pick” signs that we provide at each garden to know what’s ready for your dinner table.

After the pandemic forced a hiatus from our school gardening programs in 2020, we were delighted that the Pre-K class from Milbridge Elementary School resumed our annual spring tradition of coming to the IEM Garden at the Red Barn Motel to plant their pumpkin seedlings under the direction of Farmer Matt and Farmer Zabet. With great focus and care the kids settled their seedlings into the ground, were urged to come with family members over the summer to visit their plants, and were promised that we will see them in the fall to harvest the pumpkins.

Three men planting a maple tree

The team from Surry Gardens helped plant three large maple trees at the Commons!

If you stop by the Commons, you’ll notice some new features— three maple trees were installed this month to provide shade in the years to come and on the last day of the month, large outdoor chimes were installed near the butterfly fence.

IEM continues to have a presence at the Milbridge Farmers Market each Saturday, thanks to the volunteer support of several board members. Market goers are taking advantage of sale prices to buy us out of our “vintage” t-shirts that sport WHRL’s old name. Our recycled grain and seed bags are a big hit, especially as the supermarket has ended the use of plastic grocery bags in favor of shoppers bringing their own reusable bags.