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Big Pine Tribe launches farmers market, demo garden

July 10, 2013

This is the beginnings of Big Pine Paiute Tribe’s new community garden permaculture demonstration garden swale that is planted with fruit trees, berries and shrubs and will “create an edible food forest in a couple of years,” states a news release. The garden is part of a newly-funded Sustainable Food System Development Project which also includes a tool-lending shed, seed bank and farmers market. Photo courtesy Big Pine Paiute Tribe of the Owens Valley

The Big Pine Paiute Tribe of the Owens Valley’s newly-awarded sustainable food system grant is already sprouting a demonstration garden, farmers market and seed bank as well as fortifying a tool-lending shed and community garden greenhouse.
According to a Big Pine Tribe press release, the tribe recently received a $37,500 grant from the First Nations Development Institute of Longmont, Colo. to support the tribe’s new Sustainable Food System Development Project “with the purpose of increasing availability of locally-grown food as well as knowledge of sustainable gardening practices and native plants.”
For one thing, the grant will enable the tribe to create a permaculture demonstration garden – permaculture refers to an agricultural ecosystem that is intended to be sustainable and self-sufficient. The demo garden will be tended in the greenhouse that tribal members set up in February, Tribal Administrator Gloriana Bailey said.
There will also be an organic, mostly-vegetable seed bank and a loaner-tool shed – with a rototiller, hand tools, etc. – at the community garden located on Watson and Bartell streets just north of the tribal office. Tribal members can get tools and seeds at the community garden or by contacting the tribal office, 825 S. Main St., between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. Monday through Friday or by appointment.
Tribal Chairperson Virgil Moose said, “This project will help our people to choose healthier eating habits and give opportunities to create small businesses for a sustainable future.”
Enter the tribe’s new weekly farmer’s market, to be held from 5-8 p.m. on Fridays starting July 12. Nawanaki-ti Market – “the place to gather items” – will be located along U.S. 395 near the tribal office. Nawanaki-ti Market will feature fresh, locally-grown produce as well as locally-made arts and crafts, such as traditional beadwork. “It is the desire of the tribe that this market become a gathering place for both locals and visitors to enjoy the abundant resources the Creator has bestowed on our people,” said Bailey.
For additional information about the Sustainable Food System Development Project, contact Alan Bacock at (760) 938-2003 or

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