Brandywine Living of Princeton, NJ, boasts a serious green thumb. 

Starting May 20, the luxury senior living community’s vegetable garden expansion blossomed (no pun intended) as part of an initiative to provide fresh produce to the South Brunswick Food Pantry. Both the residents of the senior living community and local families in need benefit from the relationship.

The expansion consists of adding seven new garden beds to the two already in place. The addition of these garden beds will allow residents to increase product growth and distribution efficiency. Large, low-maintenance vegetables, such as zucchini, also will be introduced to the garden — along with peppers, tomatoes, cherry-tomatoes, kale, cucumbers, squash and herbs.

“Can You Dig It” garden club residents are in charge of caring for the garden after planting. Their tasks include planting seeds and tending to vegetables to ensure that the garden is ready for a ripe harvest and donation. 

“The garden group members are super enthusiastic to be able to connect with their community in such a special way. I’ve been a gardener all my life, it feels good to still be able to garden and help our community members that are in need,” said Joe Bonomo, a Brandywine Living of Princeton resident.

After harvesting is finished, Brandywine Living Princeton will deliver the fresh produce to the South Brunswick Food Pantry for distribution. The food pantry is managed by the Social Service Department and relies on donations. 

Jeanne Wert, director of social services at South Brunswick Food Pantry, cut a ribbon with resident Virginia Cipriani to commence the garden season. 

“We are thrilled to partner with the ‘Can You Dig It’ Garden Club. Residents in need will greatly appreciate receiving fresh vegetables,” Wert said. “One of our initiatives is to provide healthier options for our clients. We are very grateful to the members of the garden club for choosing to donate their bounty to the food pantry.”

Click here to see the In Focus archive and read how to submit your photos for consideration