FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Q: Where do you deliver? 

Due to the cost of gas, rental mileage rates on the truck, limited orders in the outer areas, and several other factors we have had to change our deliver range and prices, pictured below. We are unable to deliver outside of this range in 2021. The only exceptions to this we will consider are for large orders (8 beds or more).

In 2021 our discount zip codes include: 53204, 53205, 53206, 53208, 53210, 53212, 53216, and 53233


Q: What does a BLITZ garden look like? 

Every BLITZ garden measures 4′ wide by 8′ long and 10″ deep. Once built and filled with high-quality, organic soil from Blue Ribbon Organics (included), it will look like this:


Q: Why raised beds?

Milwaukee County’s landscape has been ruled by industry for so long that most of our soil is contaminated with toxins. For this reason, we encourage residents to garden in raised beds with healthy soil brought in from elsewhere. If you’re curious about your soil and would like to have it tested for general growing requirements or for lead, follow the links below.


Q: What is included in the price of a BLITZ garden?

  • A 4 foot wide, 8 foot long, 10 inch deep untreated pine lumber bed construction* – no chemicals leaching into your soil!
  • Delivery of 1 cubic yard of high-quality, organic compost/topsoil garden mix from Blue Ribbon Organics that will give your veggies all the nutrients they need to flourish without chemical fertilizers!
  • Move Grass Grow Food yard sign – to show all your neighbors that they can grow their own food, too. (These will not be delivered with the 2021 beds due to lumber costs, however we do have some available from previous years and some you can customize yourself! Contact us if you would like to receive a sign!)
  • Thanks to a generous donation from Stein’s, each BLITZ garden recipient will receive 5 packets of veggie seeds to start their garden growing!
  • Installation by VGI volunteers (you don’t have to do any heavy lifting!)
  • Endless community-building opportunities!

*If you were to build a similar garden yourself, you’d spend between $185 – $400 with lumber, seeds, organic soil and delivery costs, not to mention all the time you’d spend putting it all together. Plus, your purchase helps us keep doing the work we do, building communities that grow their own food!


Q: How do I tell if I am in a discounted zone?

Our discounted neighborhoods and zip codes change yearly based on our sponsors. Here are the 2021 zip codes include:

53204, 53205, 53206, 53208, 53210, 53212, 53216, 53218 and 53233.

If you are still confused as to whether or not you are located in a sponsored zip code, please call us at 414-431-0888 to confirm BEFORE ordering!


Q: When will my garden be installed?

We cannot predict precisely when your garden will be installed because this is a volunteer-driven event. However, the process for garden installation looks like this:

  1. Beds are installed each year in the late spring. In 2021, the Blitz is scheduled for April 17th-May 16th . Please have your garden site marked off and prepared by April 16th Our volunteers will not deliver soil to beds if the location isn’t clearly marked. We will instead build the frame and leave it without soil while we try to contact you. This means we will have to come back to deliver soil and drives up our costs in fuel and wears our volunteer labor force out. Please don’t do this!!!! Our volunteers will also do their best to level your beds, but if you need major leveling, sod removal, or brush cleanup etc. please do so before April 17th as we have a very tight schedule to keep and our volunteers are not trained landscapers! 
  2. We will do our best to contact you in the days before your bed is up for delivery to confirm that your space is prepared. Volunteers will also attempt to contact you when we are en route to your site to install. You do not need to be present for your garden to be installed, but please have the location marked out and unlock any gates that will prevent volunteers from entering the garden space. Don’t forget to bring your dogs inside and to clean up dog waste in your yard so that our volunteers have a safe space to work in! Thank you!

*Two caveats on delivery. One is that we cannot deliver soil during rain events. Also, this year with the current public health crisis, we are doing our best to get through all our orders as quickly as possible, but we are doing it with a quarter of the volunteers that we normally have. Please be patient with us! We will get your garden bed installed as soon as the situation allows! If you haven’t heard from us by May 10th about the status of your garden PLEASE call us to confirm your order! There’s a lot of moving parts with this majority volunteer driven event and each year, despite our best efforts, one or two beds manage to slip through the cracks. Give us a call and we’ll make sure you are on the deliver schedule that week. 414-431-0888


Q: What do I have to do to register?

Our apologies, but registration in 2021 is delayed. It should be live the week of February 22nd on our website here: https://victorygardeninitiative.org/services/blitz/


Q: What do I need to do before my garden arrives?

  • Make sure you pick a spot in your yard that gets full sun – at least 6 hours or more during summer. You want the ground to be fairly level and not to far from water access.
  • Then, before volunteer crews arrive, mark the spot with corner stakes, or some other method that will be obvious to volunteers when they arrive (stones, flower pots, sticks, etc).
  • If you have any major landscaping that needs to be done before the bed can go in, please do so before April 17th! Our volunteers are not skilled landscapers and with over 500+ beds to install every year our schedule doesn’t allow for customized work at each location. Please level the site as best you can, remove any large rocks or weeds, and if you would like the sod pulled up please do so before volunteers arrive. 
  • Some recipients also choose to lay down cardboard boxes or burlap over the site as a weed barrier to prevent grass from poking through into the garden. Anything biodegradable (made from natural materials like cotton or paper) should work – no plastic, as it can leach chemicals into your organic soil! We try to bring burlap and cardboard to each site to lay down as a barrier, but sometimes our supply runs low and we can’t guarantee it will be available.

We don’t care HOW you want to label your garden spots, just make sure our volunteers can immediately tell where you want your garden!

 


Q: Do I need to be home for my garden to be installed?

No, you do not need to be present. Please mark the spot where your garden will be (see above under “What do I need to do before my garden arrives?”) and make sure there is access to your garden. If you have a gate, be sure to leave it unlocked!


Q: Where can I find seeds and plants?

Each BLITZ garden will receive a varied selection of 5 easy to grow vegetable and flower seed packets. Many grocery, hardware and dollar stores sell seeds, and garden centers carry transplants to get a head start on the growing season. We recommend Weber’s Greenhouse run by Teens Grow Greens! They are an amazing nonprofit partner of our who grow high quality seedlings and do great work with youth in the community.


Q: I already have a bed, but would like soil added to my existing garden(s). Do you do that?

Yes! You can order just soil through the BLITZ and volunteers will come to drop it off wherever you’d like during the event  (just be sure to indicate where you want it dropped or spread in your registration form). Don’t know how many cubic yards to order? (1 yard = 27 cubic feet). Here is a free calculator: https://www.gardeners.com/how-to/soil-calculator/7558.html


Q: How can I volunteer for the Victory Garden BLITZ?

You can sign up to volunteer here. There are guides posted on this page to tell you what to expect!


Q: I’m new to gardening, can you help me take care of our garden?

Victory Garden Initiative has a program called the Garden Mentor* program where experienced gardeners volunteer their time to help new gardeners get started. We have a limited number of experienced volunteers, so you must ask early to get in the program! Contact us directly to sign up for a Mentor. Note that this year with COVID-19, we may have fewer volunteers than usual as many of our mentors are retirees who may remain in isolation. We encourage you to reach out to your mentor virtually instead of in-person as much as possible! And please reach out to us on Facebook or Instagram with pictures and we will do our best to help you online with questions and concerns!

*Garden Mentor Services are suspected in 2021.


Q: Who should I contact with questions about the BLITZ?

You can email us at helpusgrow@victorygardeninitiative.org or call us at 414-431-0888.