2010-12-03 / School News

Rockaway Waterfront Alliance Students Plant On Sturdy Ground

Student aerating the raised beds Student aerating the raised beds Students taking part in Rockaway Waterfront Alliance’s after school program at Ocean Bay Community Center started the school year with their feet planted sturdily in the ground ... of their outdoor vegetable garden, that is. The garden, which was started a few years ago by RWA, was once again brought back to life with the help of RWA educators Elizabeth Gilchrist, Keneisha Turner and the enthusiastic students currently participating in the program. Both the students and people from the community were excited to see the garden brought back to life after the dreaded heat wave of this past summer. With the onset of September’s harvest moon, the students received public attention from onlookers who were surprised to see the hard work they were putting into the garden.

After plucking away weeds; plowing; aerating and applying natural manure to the soil, they were able to reap what was ready to be harvested for this season, as well as plant seeds to reap for next year. The students started their cover crops for winter and will be continuing to harvest produce all through the winter season. Every week the students monitor the garden and do practical hands-on activities related to sustainability and the urban environment in which they live. In many ways, they are working from the ground up, but as the year so far has proven, with their hard work and dedication the students will undoubtedly continue to reap the wealth of their labor. Next time you pass by the center on Beach Channel Drive near Beach 57 Street, make sure to notice the students’ garden.
Students tilling the soil Students tilling the soil
RWA educator Elizabeth Gilchrist teaching the kids to plant seeds RWA educator Elizabeth Gilchrist teaching the kids to plant seeds

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