Campus garden sprouts at U of M Crookston

Photo by Tashi Gurung

Between the seemingly interminable June rains, ground was broken and crops began to sprout in the Allen and Freda Pederson Garden near the U of M Crookston campus. 

Dan Svedarsky, director of the Crookston Center for Sustainability, says completion of the project is “due in no small measure to support of the garden suppers,” funded through an Institute on the Environment Mini Grant.

The project also received a $25,000 grant from 98-year-old Allen Pederson to honor his wife, Freda. The couple were active gardeners, often sharing their bounty with the community.

A variety of produce, including cucumbers, onions, cabbage and peppers, has been planted in hopes of being ready to harvest in time for returning students in September. All produce from the garden will supply the Crookston campus food service.

The garden, which occupies three-quarters of an acre of city land adjacent to the campus, was a true campus-community collaboration, with expertise, interest and equipment harnessed from students, the university extension service and community members. “Even the chancellor of student affairs was out planting,” says Svedarsky.

Dan Svedarsky distributes fertilizer on the three-quater-acre plot
Dan Svedarsky plants corn in one of the garden plots.


Tomatoes have begun to sprout.


U of M Crookston Vice-Chancellor of Academic Affairs Barbara Keinath, garden benefactor Allen Pederson and Chancellor Fred Wood at the dedication ceremony.

The project has also been featured in a local news story — check it out!

Photos: Tashi Gurung