As part of a project that helps improve the environment and feed the needy and also involves a group of energetic University of La Verne students, a hydroponic greenhouse was moved in August 2012 from a home in Covina to the Glendora home of Sowing Seeds for Life’s CEO and founder Vicki Brown.

In a hydroponic greenhouse, vegetables and herb crops are grown without the use of soil.

Sowing Seeds for Life is the fast-growing charitable non-profit organization that feeds some 6,000 needy people per month in the East San Gabriel Valley. And students from La Verne, as well as those from other area colleges and high schools, have become very involved with Sowing Seeds for Life.

This brings us to the hydroponic greenhouse that became part of the Glendora landscape.

This caper all started when Vicki Brown’s son, Gregory DeSmet, noticed an ad on Craig’s List that a hydroponic greenhouse was for sale by a private party in Covina. Gregory called this person, who prefers to remain anonymous, and asked if he might donate the greenhouse to a charity.

Gregory explained what Sowing Seeds for Life, or SSFL, is all about. It provides food, clothes and services to the needy on the first and third Wednesday of every month in the parking lot at DPI Labs at 1350 Arrow Highway in La Verne. Vicki Brown is also the CEO of DPI Labs, an aerospace company that manufactures parts and instruments for the inside of private jets.

Most of the food that is handed out at the Sowing Seeds for Life food pantries comes from donations. But, as its name implies, Sowing Seeds for Life also grows some of the vegetables and produce that is given out.

Gregory also explained to the anonymous donor that the organization has been looking for a greenhouse, particularly one that is as good for the environment as a hydroponic greenhouse.

The primary crops grown in a hydroponic greenhouse are such produce as peppers, tomatoes, cucumbers, lettuce, herbs, and strawberries. This particular hydroponic greenhouse also includes a tilapia fish tank, and tilapia fish are particularly nutritious and healthy for children.

It would have never made its way from Covina to Glendora with the tremendous help for the ULV students who donated their time to this project. Sowing Seeds of Life owes them a huge debt of gratitude.