In the exuberance of spring and promise of late summer bounty, the garden shop tempts you. Those diminutive plants and itty bitty seeds just bursting with life persuade you to plant just a little more. You forget they become teenagers, oops another subject. You just don't realize how productive those plants will be once August hits. The pride of the first tomato from your garden on the table is a moment to remember. Yet the glory fades when you have more than you can consume. Fearing your vegetative prodigy will go bad, they are sneaked into care packages for relatives and abandoned like babies on the neighbor's door steps. Your friends duck invitations to avoid declining more produce.
Your excess fruit and vegetable production can be donated to food pantries, soup kitchens and group homes. Plant a Row for the Hungry in conjunction with the Chicago Botanic Gardens and the Daily Herald maintain a list drop off locations in Cook, DuPage, Kane, Lake and McHenry counties.
These are mere suggestions. Any shelter, PADS program, Church ministry, township offices might be happy to take your donations. Certainly call in advance because fresh produce is perishable thus certain days are designated for them. If you care to, then please add to this thread of charities delighted to take our produce. Please include full names, address, contact information and specifics of date and time they accept produce.
Produce from your garden is a gift of your time and efforts. Make sure it gets into someone's tummy and not the compost pile!