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CAROLYN LANIER YOUTH FARM
The 5.5 acre Carolyn Lanier Youth Farm was established in 1988 to provide locally grown produce to people receiving food assistance through the Food Bank. During the first year, only two acres were cultivated, while the remainder of the land was cleared of brush and weeds. By 1992 a sprinkler system was installed. The Farm produces approximately 50,000 lbs of vegetables and fruits every year.
Acreage is 5.5, but only 3.5 acres is actively being farmed. Classroom, office, and storage buildings, as well as cooler space for storing produce take up most of the other two acres.
SPFB farm is a sustainable farming operation. We strive to make the most efficient use of our nonrenewable resources through soil, water, pest, and disease management.
The Food Bank farm has four high tunnels, totaling 11,400 sq. ft. of growing space, extending the growing time for high-value crops 8 to 10 weeks. High tunnels are metal structures with durable plastic covers similar to greenhouses but without the heating/cooling units. The tunnels were secured through a grant partnership with Texas AgriLife Research and Extension Service.
The farm staff works with Texas AgriLife on research projects to improve the understanding of growing vegetable crops in West Texas.Texas AgriLife vegetable specialist, Russ Wallace, Ph.D., coordinates with the Food Bank to grow crops and donates much of the harvest to the GRUB Program and the South Plains Food Bank.
The farm grows over 50 types of vegetables, fruits, and herbs. The farm grows loofah gourds used by youth in the GRUB Program to make a value-added soap product called GRUB Scrub.
Funded in 1994 by Rotary District 5730 and under the guidance of noted pomologist, Dr. George Elle, the 15-acre orchard contains over 2,500 dwarf trees with 8 varieties. The first apples were harvested in 1997, with about 25,000 pounds being distributed fresh to the needy. The Southwest Lubbock Rotary Club built a barn at the orchard in 1999. A cooler was installed in 2000. Annually, the orchard produces a substantial crop of fresh apples to be distributed to clients of the Food Bank and through other Food Banks in the West Texas region. We rely on help from the community to sustain our orchard. You can support by purchasing a remembrance or honor tree to be displayed at our orchard.
The orchard is located off the corner of 56th Street and Martin Luther King Boulevard.
For more information about the Farm and the Apple Orchard, please contact the Farm, Orchard, and GRUB Director at [email protected]
GRUB - GROWING RECRUITS FOR URBAN BUSINESS
The GRUB (Growing Recruits for Urban Business) Program at the South Plains Food Bank is designed to teach young adults, ages 14 to 18, life and job skills using our farm and community gardens as a backdrop to this education.
The Food Bank’s 5-acre Carolyn Lanier Youth Farm, located at 76th Street and Avenue B in Lubbock, is the primary work site for the GRUB program. Work includes garden planning, soil preparation, maintaining the irrigation system, planting seeds and young plants, nurturing, harvesting, and marketing the produce and GRUB Scrub. The youth produce and market a value-added product, giving them experience in marketing and small business operations. The program also provides classes on nutrition and living a healthy lifestyle.
The GRUB Program also offers employment to youth who have proved to be hard workers and are interested in a deeper connection to our program.
GRUB aims to develop the whole person with an educational component that includes topics such as horticulture, nutrition, money management and other life and job skills issues. The GRUB staff is committed to nurturing and educating the youth involved in our program. We welcome referrals of “at-risk” teens. A large portion of the labor involved in the GRUB Program comes from volunteers. Youth from schools, churches, civic groups, and clubs are encouraged to volunteer with us.
For more information about the GRUB program please contact Sandy Garcia at 806-368-1333