The New York Botanical Garden celebrated the season opening of Family Vegetable Gardening, Hands-on Children’s Nutritional Programming, and Urban Farming through the Bronx Green-Up, to encourage a happier and healthier lifestyle for Bronx residents and youth.
“This is a wonderful experience to be out here, getting in tune with Mother Nature, and to be able to do it right here in the Bronx,” said Borough President Ruben Diaz, Jr.
On Friday, May 8, the NYBG invited community residents, NYBG employees, local leaders and elected officials, and students from P.S. 205 and P.S. 46 to join in the seasonal ribbon cutting ceremony.
“Today we are showing everyone in the City of New York that we can have fun, do something positive, and unite the family, while promoting good nutrition and health and fighting child obesity and diabetes,” said Diaz, Jr.
The one and a half acre Ruth Rea Howell Family Garden and Nutritional Programs offers young children the opportunity to work with NYBG staff and volunteers to learn about gardening while planting, weeding, watering, and harvesting their own produce, with the satisfaction of sampling their own hard work.
Free activities and family fun can be found in the Family Garden from April through October, Tuesday through Sunday, from 1:30 to 5:30 p.m. For a scientific perspective on gardening, children and families can also visit the Everett Children’s Adventure Garden.
A short distance away, the Garden of Happiness, located at 2156-2160 Prospect Avenue, invited guests to learn about the Green-Up program, which has been transforming vacant lots into green spaces for community residents to share in.
“We have been taking care of people and the community for over 20 years,” said urban farmer, Karen Washington. “The Garden of Happiness was the first in the program, not only growing food for residents, but developing a sense of community.”