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Start Up Ideas (long)


We are total neophytes to the community gardening concept, have just
joined the ACGA and are in search of any and all ideas and suggestions
that might help us to solidify plans and get off on the right path.

The Family Alliance is a 501 c3 organization in Dallas, Texas that works
to assist at risk youth and their families through programs of tutoring
and mentoring.  Our efforts are in southern Dallas County, an area of
economic strife and an area targeted by local and federal interests for
improvement and also an area wherein lies tons of vacant lots ideal for
community gardening.

We have recently purchased an abandoned house that sits on 2 acres of
land in a great, high profile location.  We are currently renovating the
house to become our community service center and plan to initiate a
community gardening program on the land.

I need any direction or guidance this list cares to offer that would
answer some of the following questions:
1.  If we begin by cultivating 1 acre of land divided into 20-30 plots
how much yield might we expect considering the climate?

2.  Can anyone refer us to other successful entrepreneurial endeavors by
youth oriented gardening programs - market sales, food products, etc. 
We are trying to write an intelligent business plan for a start up
company run by these kids which would utilize produce grown in the
garden for a line of food products (salsa, pickles, pasta sauces, etc.)
to be distributed to local grocers and restaurants.
Any guidance in this would be great.

3.  How do most gardens resource their water?  Trying to irrigate 2
acres using the water lines for this residence would seem to be a
stretch.

4.  Anyone care to share their successful proposals or case studies of
similar efforts to the one I describe here?

Sorry to be so long here but I am so enthused by what I envision as a
wonderful way to involve our troubled youth and yet we know so little.
Your thoughtful assistance will be greatly appreciated.
Bob White, Board of Directors
The Family Alliance
Dallas, Texas

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