Don’t toss those radish tops!

We’ve been so busy with our Heart of Missouri Gardens plot that there hasn’t been time to update the website lately.  But we are excited to announce that we have started delivering fresh, nutritious produce to Central Missouri Area Agency on Aging Senior Nutrition Centers!  Seniors who eat lunches at the Clark Senior Center and the Senior Center at the Mall have begun to enjoy produce like radishes, lettuce, and chard with their meals.

Recipients have expressed to us how much they enjoy the food and appreciate all the hard work of our volunteers to bring it to them.  To find out how you or your organization can volunteer to help us with our mission, sign up for our email list by sending a message to  You can also help by making a secure online Donation to help us buy needed equipment and materials.

And now, about those radishes…..Radishes are abundant now in many local gardens and at farmer’s markets.  Did you know that you can eat the tops?  The trick is to eat them while they are very fresh. Tender leaves can be used in salads; larger, tougher leaves, in soups or even pesto!  If you don’t get them eaten in time, you can throw the tops in your compost pile, where they will contribute their nutrients to be used later in your garden.   Read more and see recipes at Don’t toss those radish greens!

Planting continues!

The planting has gone quite nicely thus far – a lot of plants in the ground and they look great. Thanks to all who have chipped in. That’s the good part: Now, for the rest of the story.

We still have a good many plants to put in the ground and seeds to be planted. We still need your help! This is a particularly critical time because the

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plants won’t survive long out of the ground and the seed needs to be planted in order to start growth at the proper time. Weather can really mess that up! We need to get that planting done when weather permits.

Weather permitting we plan to be working Friday, May 23, 8:00 -10:00 or 11:00 am, and Saturday, 8:00-10:00 or 11:00 am, and if needed, 6:00-8:00 pm. If you have time and are able, please join us! You can let us know by contacting Mike Lester at 573-556 8660 or cell: 573-291-4832.

Just a few more days of intensive effort and we’ll be past the crunch! Thanks again for all you’ve done. It looks great

~Jack Ryan, NEEED Project Chair

Planting time is here!

Tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers, and more! Spring planting time is here! We need your help to bring fresh produce to our Senior Nutrition Centers. Be part of our first planting work party at our heart of Missouri Gardens plot at 1009 Big Horn Drive, on Tuesday, May 20. Shifts start at 8 am, 9 am, and 6 pm. Come anytime and give whatever time you can. Bring a spade or shovel and a bucket if you have them. All are welcome, from experienced gardeners to beginners wanting to learn.

It’s time to garden! Exciting updates at our General Membership meeting on April 29

The public is invited to The NEEED Project general membership meeting

Tuesday, April 29, 6:30-8:00 PM

Coca Cola Building, 605 Washington, St, Jefferson City, MO.

Meeting highlights will include:

Two outstanding speakers:

Dr. Raymond Bayan, PhD, Lincoln University professor, biochar expert, and NEEED Project technical adviser, will speak on the benefits of biochar as a soil amendment.

Melinda Hemmelgarn, MS, RD, radio host of Food Sleuth Radio, will speak on “The Dirt on Food and Health,” the importance of good soil for good health.


Gardening updates:

We will begin our Heart of Missouri gardens this spring! Hear about our garden plots and how you can help us grow food for donation to Senior Nutrition Centers and other local charitable organizations.


Fundraising campaign kick-off:

Watch a short video highlighting our mission and goals and hear how your donation can be the Heart in the Heart of Missouri Gardens.


Short business meeting:

Voting on revisions to the by-laws. For a copy to review before the meeting send an email to


All NEEED Project meetings are open to the public. Come and bring your friends and neighbors. We need your help to address the serious

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problem of food insecurity in mid-Missouri.




Meeting on September 26

The public is invited to The NEEED Project

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general membership meeting on Thursday, September 26, 7:00 PM, at 1021 Northeast Drive in Jefferson City (at the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship).

Dr. Raymond Bayan from Lincoln University, Department of Agriculture and Environmental Science will speak on the environmental benefits of biochar. Production and use of biochar and bioenergy are among the primary objectives of The NEEED Project.

NIBS: Wednesday brainstorming sessions

People involved with NEEED are getting together informally each Wednesday morning at 08:30 at Morgan’s Grill, 306 E. High Street. The idea is to get together over

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a cup of coffee and informally exchange ideas about the NEEED PROJECT. Those meetings are dubbed “NEEED Informal Brain Storms” (NIBS).

Next NIBS is Wednesday, May 29. Hope to see you there!

Guest Speaker for May 7 NEEED Meeting

Dr. Raymond Bayan to Address NEEED Project Meeting

The NEEED Project next public meeting will be at 7:00 PM on May 7, 2013 in the Coca Cola Community Center, 605 Washington Street in Jefferson City. The featured guest speaker will be Dr. Raymond Bayan from Lincoln University, Department of Agriculture and Environmental Science.
Dr. Bayan holds doctoral degrees in both geology and soil science and is currently engaged in both teaching and research related to production and application of biochar, a soil amendment derived from organic waste. His remarks will describe the status of biochar research, including its value as a soil additive to increase plant productivity, how biochar application can reduce atmospheric CO2, and its potential economic value. Jack Ryan, Interim Chair of the NEEED Project, states that “One doesn’t have to be a scientist to understand and appreciate Dr. Bayan’s description of the science and emerging technologies around biochar production. We are extremely pleased to provide an opportunity for the community to hear and engage someone with his knowledge and experience.” In addition to Dr. Bayan’s presentation, Tuesday night’s meeting will continue with the NEEED Project objective to organize as a non-profit that can plan and operate a community garden to grow vegetables for donation to food banks.

NEEED is an acronym derived from the first letter of the words, nutrition, energy, environment and economic development.

The May 7 meeting is open the public and all are cordially invited

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to attend.

The NEEED Project

NEEED is an acronym derived from the words Nutrition, Energy, Environment and Economic Development. The NEEED Project is a charitable and educational organization established to mitigate hunger, address environmental issues and enhance economic opportunity. Objectives include:

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Plans include large scale community gardens

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Providing fresh produce for donation to local food banks