OT: #EATING gardens and tailgating with me- Vincent Smith

Submitted by MrSmith on September 1st, 2016 at 7:05 AM

Hello everyone,

Another exciting season for Michigan Football and tailgating and gardens. For those of you who do not know, I have made a career change in my retirement from Football into farming.

We have a project called #EATING and we athletes build gardens side by side with members from our communities. We started in Florida in my and Martavious Odoms home town of Pahokee, Florida and we have been in Flint since summer 2015.  It is the most rewarding experience of my life.

The focus is that green vegetables helps get the lead out and reduce the effects of lead exposure and that is the most important thing for the children of Flint right now.  Also seeing us athletes makes them want to garden.  

So this season we are going to be walking around the tailgate again but this time with fresh vegetables to share! (Vegetables are from our partner farm grows outside Flint  city limits- the Flint gardens produce goes to people in Flint) Please message us at [email protected] and we will swing by with something fresh.  

you can read more about us at : teamgardens.org 

you can order awesome #EATING shirts at shopeating.com and show your support and fund our work

I wanted to share my favorite garden picture so far.  Its our Team Gardens member with his son.




September 1st, 2016 at 7:44 AM ^

Thanks for posting this morning. I meant to donate last time you posted. Just did. Really like this project and the love you seem to have for it shows. Thanks MrSmith!

Hemlock Philosopher

September 1st, 2016 at 8:03 AM ^

I've long been an "urban farmer" and I am a huge proponent of healthy eating and grow (and brew) your own as much as you can. This project is wonderful! Recently I bought a house in Tampa and started gardening down here (moved from MI) - man, it's so different than up north. It's like relearning how to ride a bike. 

Anyhow, I am a proud supporter of #Eating Keep up the great work! 


September 1st, 2016 at 8:27 AM ^

Florida gardening you can get tropical fruit like Starfruit or Lychee.  I love the little bananas that taste like apples.  We will have to exchange notes as its all new to me up here in Michigan.  I want to bring the Paw Paw back, Michigan's only tropical like fruit.

Hemlock Philosopher

September 1st, 2016 at 9:20 AM ^

I guess that's my problem then - I am trying to grow what I grew up north. Mostly peppers, eggplants and tomatoes. The eggplants are doing really well; but the tomatoes failed (too hot per the local garden store - I should start, well, today and grow through Christmas); and the peppers are producing a small amount of fruits, but the leaves are getting very small and wilted at the top. They're either diseased or lacking in some nutrition. ... My fiancee just got me a passionfruit vine. I hope that one takes!

As for Michigan - any berries (strawberry, blueberry, raspberry, ect) and of course apples and cherries are your best fruit choices. 

I think the growing seasons and all these [redacted] bugs down here are the main differences. 


September 1st, 2016 at 8:15 AM ^

With all the talk about "taking a stand" in the news this week dealing with Colin Kaepernick, all I can say it is great to have people like you and Tay going out there and doing the hands on work to help bring about positive change in a community.

"The work is on the outsidee, staring out the windows is for love songs and houseflies"


September 1st, 2016 at 11:33 AM ^

Anytime a Michigan Wolverine football player posts to this board, the topic should not be labeled as OT! 

Vincent, I admire the work that you are doing in Florida and Michigan.  Kids need to understand where their food comes from, spend time outdoors, and keep occupied in positive group activities.    Gardening is healthy for the mind, body, and soul!  Go Blue!


September 1st, 2016 at 9:14 AM ^

Definitely not OT. You and your team should be very proud of the work that you are doing. That reminds me, I have to get a new shirt. Mine has been through hell. Fish blood and no sleeves!


September 1st, 2016 at 9:42 AM ^

Mr. Smith, I cannot tell you how proud this project and all of you invloved make me feel. Truly, truly inspiring. I wish I could do more than donate financially, unfortunately being a long way from MI now makes that a challenge. Thanks for all you do, I can't wait to see the good and positive impact this will continue to have on real people. Go blue!