Connecticut Urban Community Gardens
- Subject: [cg] Connecticut Urban Community Gardens
- From: email@example.com
- Date: Thu, 23 Mar 2006 16:44:52 -0500
Community gardens a growing interest for city neighbors
JOEL C. THOMPSON firstname.lastname@example.org
Connecticut Post Online
BRIDGEPORT ? For Maria Sepulveda, growing vegetables and flowers with her neighbors at a community garden near St. Mary's Church provides pleasure and reward.
"Tomatoes, squash, peppers, eggplant and string beans we grow are good and delicious," said Sepulveda, of Hough Avenue. "We share everything."
She recalled how a trash-strewn lot was transformed into the community garden ? one of the city's oldest ? more than 20 years ago.
Sepulveda, one of more than a dozen residents cultivating the garden, also will reap personal recognition for her instrumental role in its continuing success.
She will receive an award at the fourth annual Community Gardening Conference, titled "From Blight to Bounty: A Park City Experience," held 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday at Connecticut's Beardsley Zoo.
Others to receive awards include Jenny Vongxay, a Harding High School student; the Sacred Heart University Social Concerns Department, for reviving a garden in a Laotian neighborhood on Hallet Street last year; and Lynn Pritchard, who designed a garden last year at the Burroughs Community Center in memory of Tim and Kim Donnelly, who were fatally shot at their Fairfield jewelry store on Feb. 2, 2005.
The awards are part of a daylong conference to explore the benefits of community gardening. The event is sponsored by the Connecticut Community Gardening Association, in cooperation with other gardening organizations around the state, including the Master Gardener Association.
Robert Halstead, a master gardener who has helped oversee Bridgeport's urban garden program since its inception in the early 1980s, said the conference will attract gardening enthusiasts and experts from around the state who will offer inspiration for the coming growing season.
Ian Marvy, director of Added-Value in Brooklyn, N.Y., will deliver the keynote speech for the conference at 9:15 a.m.
His topic will be "Growing a Park for the 21st Century: The Intersection of Urban Parks, Sustainable Agriculture and Social Justice."
Bus tour of urban gardens planned
Three sessions will follow on gardening topics, including sustainable agriculture in an urban setting, creating gardens to remove blight, garden design, manure usage and insect control.
A bus tour of the city's two dozen urban gardens is planned 1:30 to 2:45 p.m., after lunch, which will be catered by Bloodroot, a vegetarian restaurant.
The conference cost is $5 for youths and seniors; $10 for community gardeners; $15 for others; and $25 for supporters.
Registration will be 8 to 9 a.m. on the day of the conference at the zoo; checks payable to Connecticut Community Gardening Association may be sent to P.O. Box 266, Harwinton, CT 06791.
For more information, call Halstead at 576-8356, or Jeanne Yuckienuz at 394-6576.
The American Community Gardening Association listserve is only one of ACGA's services to community gardeners. To learn more about the ACGA and to find out how to join, please go to http://www.communitygarden.org
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