2018Urbangardenhero

Community, Environmental Sustainability

Students Expand Farm and Garden

Since Spring Break, Environmental Interest Group (EIG) students have been hard at work in the pop-up garden, building raised beds, shoveling dirt, and prepping a new outdoor greenspace for the school. The multi-use outdoor space sits on 1418 Bellevue, a property purchased by Northwest in December 2017.

"I've realized how much I like gardening since working on these gardens," says Riley W. '19. "Working on this project allows us students to explore different interests. A lot of us have become really invested in this space and it has been fun to enjoy it together."

The pop-up garden contains 16 raised beds, which, combined with the 14 beds in the Urban Farm and Garden, increases the school’s growing space to approximately 1,000 square feet. The farms, which are maintained and cared for by a team of EIG students, grow everything under the sun, says Jenny, and provides fresh vegetables and herbs for the Dining Hall staff to serve occasionally at lunch.

Riley has served as a member of the student manager team for the Urban Farm and Garden all year. Riley and the rest of her team take stock of tasks that need to be done in the gardens and helps organize and delegate responsibilities to other students.

"The students worked hard to transform the space and saw how doing so can transform community and personal relationships," says Jenny Cooper, Northwest's director of environmental education and stewardship.

The EIG helped create the space over the course of about 15 dedicated work days, many of which occurred over Spring Break and on weekends. During the summer, the NWS Dining Hall staff will use some of the produce for lunches during Summer Camp.