Above the traffic and exhaust that lingers on Massachusetts Avenue sits an urban oasis.
Pictured: The Boston Natural Areas Network’s Northampton Street garden. Next
The Boston Natural Areas Network’s Northampton Street garden, located on the rooftop courtyard at the Boston Public Health Commission’s building at 35 Northampton St., produces fruits and vegetables for area food pantries, in addition to training the next generation of urban gardeners. Next
On Friday the youth that participated in the non-profit’s Youth Conservation Corps program came together to celebrate the end of the summer program and sample some of the plants they have been caring for over the past two months.
Pictured: Conservation Corps members led advocates on a tour of the garden. Next
“This was originally built as a landscaped courtyard and I don’t think it was intended to be a vegetable garden,” explained Jeremy Dick, the director of property and horticulture for BNAN. “The space wasn’t being used effectively so we introduced this garden and it has been very successful.”
Pictured: Conservation Corps members Darius Wilson, 17, of Dorchester and Zachary, 16, of Mattapan inspected the garden’s tomato patch Friday. Next
The area, a vast sea of concrete between towering buildings, was first adopted in 2010 by the Food Project, a food advocacy non-profit, and a small section was converted into a garden. After BNAN took over the space in 2012, organizers with the group and its army of youth transformed and expanded the garden into a space capable of producing over 1,500-pounds of fresh, organic food a season.
Pictured: Conservation Corps members Kishawra Barrett-Pearson, 17, of Roxbury and Zannatul Zannat, 15, of Roxbury showed off some of the garden’s crops. Next
The youth who took part in the program get paid minimum wage and spend about 25 hours a week tending to both the Northampton Street space and another BNAN managed space in Hyde Park. Taking part in every aspect of the process, from planting the seeds to harvesting the crops, the program aims to get the youth thinking about both open space and what they find in their own fridge.
Pictured: Conservation Corps members Jamison Gaston, 17, of Dorchester and Kishawra Barrett-Pearson, 17, of Roxbury explained the compost process used at the garden. Back to the beginning
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