Farm manager Nikki Lax holds a tray of plant starts grown at the Youth Garden Project. [Youth Garden Project]

Members of the Youth Garden Project farm crew began planting vegetable and flower seeds in late winter and have been nurturing the young plants for the past three months. Now it’s time for some of those starts to find new homes.

“Our greenhouses are overflowing,” YGP farm manager Nikki Lax said. “It’s exciting to see them go home. We’re running out of space.”

The YGP’s annual spring plant sale is happening in person on Saturday, April 17 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Youth Garden Project (530 S. 400 East, Moab). Plants will also be for sale online, starting Sunday, April 18, at 8 a.m. The online sale will be held for a week, or until plants are sold out.

Thousands of plants will be available including peppers, tomatoes, cucumbers, flowers, kale, okra, tomatillos, eggplant, onions and basil. There will also be herbs, native perennials, ground covers, flowering perennials, and fruit trees for sale.

“The plant sale is a kickstart to people’s gardening season, as well as our own season of programs,” Lax said.

Staff will orient the sale to encourage social distancing to ensure a safe environment, Lax said. Masks are required.

“We’re looking forward to having people onsite, in-person,” Lax said. “It’s just a great community gathering. People are sharing stories, advice, knowledge – it’s a lot of fun!”

Plant prices will range from $2.75 to $5.75 depending on the size. Six packs of starts will also be available.

YGP follows organic practices for growing its vegetables. The farm crew uses organic potting soil, and a lot of its seeds are organic, as well.

Additionally, YGP merchandise will be for sale such as T-shirts and gardening gloves in multiple sizes. Quiches to take home, made from YGP eggs and produce, will also be for sale.

Rachel Hosna is coming all the way from Escalante to purchase starts for her garden. She was inspired to grow her first garden ever last year – a single raised bed – with plants she purchased at last year’s YGP plant sale. She grew kale, tomatillos, zucchinis, cherry tomatoes, and cucumbers. As a novice gardener, she said she appreciated the tips she received from YGP.

“The plants did so well,” she said.

This year she’s bumping up her garden to six raised beds and plans to add slicer tomatoes, serrano chilis, eggplants, and flowers to her garden, said the former Moab resident. She’s planning her monthly trip to Moab around the plant sale, she said.

The nonprofit organization grows food on its 1.5-acre educational garden property, which is sold through a CSA (community supported agriculture) program, at Moonflower Community Co-op, and to local restaurants. The YGP also uses its produce to prepare garden dinners and brunches for the public, as well as for other special events.

All sale proceeds go to support the YGP community and youth programs. During school breaks, YGP offers youth camps for children in grades 1-6, as well as in-school and after-school programs. It also employs two teens to work in its gardens during the summer.

Additionally, YGP hosts a number of community events, such as the Weed ‘n Feed, where community members help out with onsite projects in exchange for a healthy dinner prepared from ingredients grown mostly on the premises.

You can view the more than 85 different plant varieties that will be available for purchase by visiting the web site: www.youthgardenproject.org/plantsale/

Event Information

What: Youth Garden Project Spring Plant Sale

When: In-person on Saturday, April 17 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.; Online on April 18 beginning at 8 a.m.

Where: In-person at the Youth Garden Project (530 S. 400 East, Moab) or online at www.youthgardenproject.org/plantsale/