Maryland Avenue School Garden

Maryland Avenue School Garden

The Slow Food WISE Learning Garden at Maryland Avenue Montessorri, an MPS school on Milwaukee’s Eastside, was planted the last week of May by the students along with the help of parents and Slow Food volunteers.

watering seedlings

The raised gardens, which were built last year, stand on asphalt adding some much appreciated greenspace to the school grounds. The gardens, which use principals from “square-foot gardening,” give the kids an opportunity to connect with nature but also to apply skills in measurement and planning.

The goal for the 3rd and 6th grade classrooms was to plant edible crops that can be harvested in the fall when the kids return to school. The teachers plan on cooking these veggies together in the classroom. Slow Food member Geli Golopol helped these students plant their raised beds with two types of potatoes, broccoli, carrots and hubbard squash.  Geli was motivated to particpate in the project citing that she missed gardening with kids now that her own children and grown.

A garden takes a lot of tending, and there will be plenty more opportunities to volunteer.  Contact Lisa Kingery here if you would like to help the students in the fall, or would like to contribute your time, energy or talent in anyway to the project.

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2 Comments on "Maryland Avenue School Garden"

  • Mark says

    I don’t know about any plans, but I built some elevated beds by tnaikg a piece of 5/8 treated plywood and building a stand for it out of 4 4 s. The stand has to be pretty stout, it will be holding a lot of weight. Build the frame first then set it on the legs, It has six legs. I have a full frame around the outside with two cross pieces evenly spaced from end to end. I cut sides and ends out of another piece of plywood 16 tall and then attached them to the floor by running a 2 2 around the edge , set back far enough so that the outside of the sides and ends are even with the edge of the floor. I ran another wall across four feet from each end and stiffened that with 2 4 s. I used screws throughout that are rated for use in treated lumber.I have three of the beds that are three years old and still going great. Don’t forget to drill holes in the floor for drainage.

    • lkingery says

      Thanks for the details, Mark. I would love to see a picture of the final product. Determining how to build a raised bed garden on asphalt was a challenge. I ultimately followed the advice of a friend and former colleague that runs a school garden non-profit in NJ called Ag in the City. We built 1.5 foot and 3 foot high beds with cedar wood–4 ft wide x 6 ft long. The corners were reinforced with 2 x 2 boards. We placed the built boxes on top of the asphalt and filled them with 2 inches of landscape gravel, and then lined the boxes and covered the gravel completely with landscape fabric. This was done for drainage. The soil we used was “Mel’s Mix”–1/3 perlite, 1/3 compost, and 1/3 peat. It’s been more than a year and the boxes still look great.

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