market street garden 2(Right to left) Russ Ledger and his son Evan tend the Market Street Garden which will install raised beds to increase its productivity thanks to the New Mexico Community Foundation Permaculture Fund received by the National Center for Frontier Communities.Monday, June 24, 2019; Silver City, NM: The National Center for Frontier Communities (NCFC) is the proud recipient of a grant from the New Mexico Community Foundation Permaculture Fund 2019. The awarded funds, of nearly $20,000, will help the region towards attaining food sovereignty, a state of producing enough food to equal the needs of southwest New Mexico residents.

NCFC Food Systems Program Manager Ben Rasmussen said the funds, “basically allow us to gain momentum on several different food projects that are happening in the region.”

Headquartered in Silver City, NCFC prioritizes access to food systems and sovereignty since most of the frontier is classified as a “food desert” by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). Because of the remote nature of the frontier, many residents are located far from grocery stores limiting their access to affordable and nutritious food. The funded projects will work towards creating a stronger food economy.

The six different permaculture projects funded have a wide scope including building hoop houses, creating water cisterns, planting native crops and solidifying the continuation of the Grant County Seed Library. 

NCFC staff and certified permaculture designer Kristin Lundgren said, “Permaculture aims to develop ecosystems that will have permanent presence with or without human interactions; these diverse and resilient systems mimic natural ecology.” 

According to Lundgren, the grant will “work towards building a resilient local food economy that can take care of and feed our local populace.”

Several of the projects originated from the Local Food Promotion Program received by NCFC from the USDA two years ago, and now can expand efforts thanks to the additional funds. 

Rasmussen said, “Our initial micro-farm trainings have helped launch a number of new farms in the region, but the farmers wanted to take their production to the next level by including permaculture activities to expand their capacity. The New Mexico Community Foundation Permaculture Fund will aid in their efforts.”

Raised beds will be built at the Market Street Garden in Silver City, and Arenas Valley Community Garden will install a water gathering cistern to more effectively gather and store water during the seasonal monsoon rains.

Also, 14 water collection basins will transform into mini-food forests by planting edible native crops with the Wild Resilience Collective, thus feeding and beautifying the region while allowing for better watershed management. NCFC is working on the project with local municipalities and Stream Dynamics, which created the water harvesting basins. 

Finally, the permaculture grant will revitalize the Grant County Seed Library by helping develop educational and outreach materials. The seed library has locations at the Silver City Public Library and the Commons, where residents can check out seeds to grow and harvest their own seeds to donate back for others to use.

Rasmussen added, “Also the grant will fund a seed gathering workshop to promote perpetuating the library’s seed stock and build the store of regionally-acclimated seeds available to farmers and gardeners.”  

Lundgren says the projects will have a greater impact, “Our efforts can be replicated in place-based ways for each frontier community. We need to be thinking about how to grow resilient and sustainable food systems for all rural areas.”

For more information on NCFC contact Rasmussen at (575) 597-0032 or email: brasmussen@swchi.org or visit the website at http://frontierus.org/.

Live from Silver City

Join GCB Three Times Weekly Updates

Welcome to Three Times Weekly Updates! You will be subscribed to email notifications with links to recently posted articles.
You can unsubscribe anytime. We never share or rent your email to anyone.

Fire Alerts

Editor's Note

Check out a new column that will talk about the town of Silver City and its news and services. 

Those new to providing news releases to the Beat are asked to please check out submission guidelines at http://www.grantcountybeat.com/about/submissions. They are for your information to make life easier on the readers, as well as the editor.

Classifieds: Check periodically to see if any news ones have popped up. Welcome to our new version of classified ads.  We invite you our readers to post your own classifieds, which are available for viewing 24/7 and are very reasonable in price, because you do all the work yourselves. A recent classified for a van brought a sale within two days. It's really easy to check to see if there's a classified ad. Just click on Classifieds in the blue menu and the page will open letting you know if there is a classified ad. Remember that your buying classified ads gives you a wide readership, as well as supporting the Beat. Post YOURS for quick results!

Images: We have received complaints about large images blocking parts of other articles. If you encounter this problem, click on the title of the article you want to read and it will take you to that article's page, which shows only that article without any intruders. It's a software problem, not easily fixable, other than showing fewer articles per summary page. If you are a frequent visitor, you might not mind fewer articles per page, but if you only come once in a while, you likely want to see more articles to browse. Write me at editor@grantcountybeat.com to let me know your feelings on this issue. 

Compliance: Because you are an esteemed member of The Grant County Beat readership, be assured that we at the Beat continue to do everything we can to be in full compliance with GDPR and pertinent US law, so that the information you have chosen to give to us cannot be compromised. 

New Columnists: The Beat continues to bring you new columnists.Recent additions  include one about end of life options, Compassionate Care.

The Beat has a column for you gardeners out there. The Grant County Extension Service will bring you monthly columns on gardening issues. The first one posted is on Winterizing your houseplants and patio plants.

The Beat totally appreciates its readers and subscribers!  


All articles and photos indicated by a byline are copyrighted to the author or photographer. You may not use any information found within the articles without asking permission AND giving attribution to the source. Photos can be requested and may incur a nominal fee for use personally or commercially.

NOTE: If an article does not have a byline, it was sent to the Beat and written by someone not affiliated with the Beat

Don't forget to tell advertisers that you saw their ad on the Beat.

Newsletter: If you subscribe to the Join GCB Three Times Weekly Updates option on the left side of this page, you will be subscribed to email notifications with links to recently posted articles.

Here for YOU: Consider the Beat your DAILY newspaper for up-to-date information about Grant County. It's at your fingertips! One Click to Local News.

Feel free to notify editor@grantcountybeat.com, if you notice any problems on the site. Your convenience is my desire for the Beat.

Thanks for your support for and your readership of Grant County's online news source—www.grantcountybeat.com