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FONDAMA Yard Garden Program

From ECHO’s Seed Bank: 2013/2014 Tomato Observation Trial

From Our Regional Impact Centers

Books, Websites and Other Resources: Perennial Vegetables

In Memoriam: Richard D. Chapin


2013/2014 Tomato Observation Trial

by Holly Sobetski, ECHO Florida Seed Bank Manager

The ECHO Florida Seed Bank conducted a tomato observation trial during the 2013/2014 winter season, to compare our currently-offered varieties with new varieties acquired in 2013. In this article we aim to: 1) summarize findings from our trial that may be helpful to you in selecting varieties to grow and evaluate; 2) inform you of tomato varieties available from ECHO; and 3) provide practical tips on observation trials in general. If you would like to try the varieties featured in this article, visit the Global Seed Bank page for a list of offerings and information on how to request trial packets of seed. 

FONDAMA Yard Garden Program

Dawn Berkelaar, with Mark Hare

In Haiti, a Yard Garden program is helping families and individuals to make real change in the area surrounding their homes.

The results, described and pictured in some photos below, can be impressive! Mark Hare with MPP describes the program as follows: “The Yard Garden program is not about making huge changes in people’s lives. It is about making small, daily changes that are consistent, persistent and positive, without being intrusive. The program is about helping people recognize the power they have to learn to do something useful with what they already have at hand, and about sharing their knowledge with the people around them. It is also about learning to celebrate the small successes, while praying and struggling for the big ones.”

The Yard Garden program is organized by MPP (Mouvement Paysan Papaye/ Peasant Movement of Papaye, founded in 1973) in cooperation with FONDAMA (an association of grassroots organizations working together to address the root causes of hunger).

In this article, we share a summary of the sixteen criteria used in the Yard Garden program, with text and photos used with permission from Mark’s blog. We also share information from Mark about how the program came about and how it works, followed by feedback from a program participant.