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Yard to table month celebrated in Sioux Falls

Published: Aug. 31, 2021 at 12:12 PM CDT
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SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (Dakota News Now) - September is Yard to Table Month, a celebration of urban and rural sustainable agriculture in the Sioux Falls area.

If you see Kelsie Thomas going through her backyard, you’ll probably catch her snacking too.

“I’m always popping cherry tomatoes, I think that’s the benefit of working in the yard is that you’re eating along the way,” said Thomas.

Whether she’s brought food fresh from the garden, or opens up a jar she’s canned, there’s a sense of pride in growing your own food.

“It just doesn’t quite compare to and to know that it came from your yard and that you know high nutritional count,” said Thomas.

She also points out that growing your own food means less expense in traveling to the store to purchase items.

The organization Homeground, a local chapter of Dakota Rural Action, is celebrating Yard to Table Month with local workshops. One is on saving seeds for the future.

“The benefits of seed preservation really is that the plants are getting used to your soil, your weather. So to be able to reuse that into your next growing season just benefits hopefully quality and quantity of production,” said Thomas.

Stephanie Peterson is a local egg producer. When she delivers her eggs to restaurants, someone usually announces, “the egg lady is here!” If you’re invited for a meal, there’s a pretty good guess what’s on the menu.

“We feed them eggs, always, I always feed people eggs,” said Peterson.

She’s increasing her flock from 100 to 300 in the coming weeks but says having just a few chickens in your own backyard can be rewarding.

“Chickens are so easy, they’re easier than dogs and cats, the biggest, most difficult part is the setup, getting your coop set up and once you have your system in place and your coop built and ready, they are so simple to take care of,” said Peterson.

The annual tour de coop is part of Yard to table month, on September 25th.

“Great opportunity to look at other people’s chicken setups to see what they’re growing in their backyard for gardens, what type of coop they have how many chickens they have, what their system is,” said Peterson. “A great place to start if you want ideas on raising your own birds.”

Other workshops to celebrate Yard to Table month include a cooking class, farm tour, and a backyard celebration, all found on their Homegrown Facebook page.

“What we really want to celebrate through this yard to table month is just doing things a little bit differently, and you know maybe increasing your sustainability or your production or your food or just trying to do a little bit more in your own yard so that you’re not having to rely on other yards or, you know other farms,” said Thomas.

Yard to Table events during September:

Thursday 9/2/21 – Sustainability Series: Cooking with Local Foods

Saturday 9/18/21 – Blackshire Farms Farm Tour

Monday 9/20/21 – SoDak Grown Chapter Potluck & Backyard Celebration

Tuesday 9/21/21 – Outdoor Campus Series: Seed Saving from Native Plants

Saturday 9/25/21 – 10th Annual Tour de Coop

All events are free and open to the public.

Homegrown is an area chapter of Dakota Rural Action providing education, skill-shares, and tours on growing, sharing, and preserving what you grow for over ten years.

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