New Teaching Tool, Community Garden

By schwartzsa | September 24, 2010

By Lynn Sipsey ’11

The Arcadia University Community Garden was tilled and planted in the last three weeks of last semester with the vision of it being used as a tool for teaching the Arcadia community about sustainable horticulture, and organic gardening.

Participants have learned about starting a garden, layout planning, planting, harvesting, maintenance, seed saving, composting, and the importance of rain barrels. With almost 20 varieties of vegetables and herbs planted, summer volunteers watered and ate what they pleased, and learned along the way. Currently there are tomatoes, basil, arugula, beans, pumpkin, squash, spinach, kale, carrots, and peppers being grown.

Several summer workshops included the Community Garden in the curriculum, and professors in both the art and science departments are discussing ways of integrating it into their curriculum.

On the weekend of Sept. 4, Community Garden volunteers threw a party and made pesto pizza with some of our ingredients from the garden—dough from scratch, fresh mozzarella from Weaver’s Way, and pesto using basil from the garden. Sometimes there is no better way to learn the importance of local eating than eating from the very plants you spent your summer nurturing.

Gardeners have included members of the surrounding community, graduate and undergraduate students, faculty, staff, and even President Jerry Greiner has come out on numerous occasions to till and plant.

If you are interested in being a part of the garden or simply finding local foods, contact Lynn Sipsey at