Garden Kitchen Lab

The Garden Kitchen Lab is a backyard-to-table STEAM educational program for underserved communities. Our mission is to give youth access to healthy and locally grown food through starting and sustaining food-producing gardens. This hands-on multi-disciplinary program puts the power in the hands of community children, so they understand the link between food production and the environment, and take ownership of their health.

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Growing Season Begins!

This week the students began planting using small seed trays and covering the cells with potting mix making sure to fill them to the top. Then made 1/4 inch deep dimple in each cell and placed two to three seeds into each cell. By using this method if all seeds in one cell start to germinate, you can pull out all but the healthiest seedling —this is called thinning to one. We planted winter squash, basil, parsley, onions, beets, habanero peppers, Swiss Chard, and carrots. The girls seemed to be particularly excited about planting carrots and habanero peppers, and wanted their seedlings to grow right away! By observing how long seeds take to sprout will make students understand Nature’s processes, and appreciate when the garden starts giving.

The students also Skyped with other Global partner’s Junior participants in Mexico City, as part of the Global Partner’s Junior program. Our students are growing habanero peppers to mail the seeds to Mexico in the fall. Next year the students in Mexico will plant the habanero pepper seeds. We hope this exchange helps all students understand how technology can be used to make a difference in real life.

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Spring 2015: Our New Garden at St. John’s!

We started our growing season this April First with the help of the New York Restoration Project. The NYRP focuses on building and restoring vacant lots, public parks, schools, sidewalks, and waterfronts in communities of need. The St. John’s Recreation Center had NYRP designing and building our new garden: Planters, trellises, and a compost bin. This is our final project for the Global Partner’s Junior project, which our Garden Kitchen Lab students are also a part of.

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