June 11, 2010

The Push for More School Food Production Gardens continues…

Jesse Kurtz-Nicholl

Jesse Kurtz-Nicholl

Research Assistant

Johns Hopkins Center for a Livable Future

On Saturday, June 5th, DC Prep Academy Charter School and Rails to Trails Conservancy teamed up to add another urban/school garden into the growing rolls of urban agriculture taking place around the country. The 1000 square foot garden set in Northeast D.C.’s Edgewood community will combine an edible forest of fruit trees, perennial vegetables, herbs, insectary plants and dynamic accumulators with a large space for growing annual crops like collards, corn, squash, tomatoes and more.

Garden Site before Transformation

Garden Site before Transformation

The advantage of this garden site is that it is located along the brand new Metropolitan Branch Trail coming out of Union Station which provides previously cut-off communities accessibility to the metro and to Union Station and the Capital. The garden will not only beautify the new bike trail it will hopefully connect the charter school to the community in a new way. DC Prep is housed in the old industrialized buildings that would use the nearby railroad industry and even now their middle school campus has no playground to speak of. A true “urban” campus, DC Prep students are absolutely the students that most need to be reconnected to the growing of food and how it affects our lives

New Garden Site

New Garden Site

Plans are being made for how the garden will be used, but classes and teachers are already lining up to use the garden in their curriculum. Hopefully, the site will be used not only to educate students in genuine food production, but bring a small and steady stream of locally grown produce into the homes of the students and teachers at the school. DC Prep already is at the forefront of school food, using Revolution Foods as their sourcing agent and we hope next year to collaborate with Revolution Foods in cooking demonstrations using food from the garden.

Sheet Mulching!

Sheet Mulching!

Three 60 ft rows will keep the kids busy

Three 60 ft rows will keep the kids busy

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