Urban Gardens at City College

Dear Members of the City College Community,

For some time now, and in connection to a number of different initiatives, several of you have asked about the possibility of building something like a campus garden, where interested people could participate and where produce could conceivably be sent to our food pantry. Some time ago we asked David Robinson to look into this, and he's spent a fair amount of time scouring the campus to find a location that would work—both logistically and in terms of providing what the plants themselves need.

I'm pleased to announce that David has identified some land on the northern edge of the Spitzer school, an area with mixed shaded and sunny spaces, where a built-in sprinkler system can be put to use. Some of the lands may be cultivated at ground level, but we have also ordered materials to build raised planters and ordered topsoil to fill them. We'll call the space "The Urban Gardens at City College," and I'm looking forward to having it become a cherished part of our campus neighborhood.

It will take a little while to get all this set up, and I realize that we're getting a late start, but I'm setting a planting date for Tuesday, June 19th at noon. We'll need to monitor the construction of the garden and the raised beds, and make sure that this date still makes sense when the dust settles after graduation—so if you sign up to participate, make sure you double check for a follow up email in case we need to postpone to allow site development to be complete. I'll also be asking David Robinson to map out a garden plan, so that we're putting the correct plants in the appropriate spots. But I'm looking forward to getting this set up, both for this year and for future planting seasons. I know that some of you have service projects or teaching activities that you'd like to develop in association with a campus garden. If you have such a plan, planting day would be a good time to make sure that we're on the same page.

If you're interested in participating in this project, please send a brief email with the subject line "Planting Day participant" to Teresa Flemming at tflemming@ccny.cuny.edu. If you have a program for which you'd like access to the garden, please let us know briefly in that email. And if you have seedlings or seeds that you'd like to start in advance of planting day, please make note of that, too—and go ahead and get things started under your grow lights.

Several people have worked really hard to get this off the ground. David Robinson scoped out the site and will direct the construction of the planting boxes and the development of the garden. Dee Dee Mozeleski pushed to make sure that this kept moving and ordered all the supplies that we'll be using. Khadesha Maxim, George Varian and others in facilities will be managing the development of the site.

I know a lot of you have been waiting a long time for something like this. Please take a moment, on planting day or before, to acknowledge the work of people who made sure it would happen.


Vince Boudreau


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