This summer, Seattle Tilth will teach apartment and condominium dwellers how to grow salads, herbs and vegetables in containers and how to compost food waste indoors or on balconies or patios in downtown parks. These classes provide new ideas and will help troubleshoot site challenges for new and experienced gardeners. Seattle Tilth garden experts will show innovative ways to grow food organically with limited space and reduce food waste for people who don’t have a yard or garden plot. [Read more…]
It doesn’t matter whether you live in a studio, condo, dorm or house, Seattle Parks and Recreation wants to make sure more people have the opportunity to grow and eat healthy food.
For the past several years, Seattle Parks has partnered with Seattle Tilth to host free gardening classes in downtown parks. The classes range in subject, but many focus on apartment residents and teach people how to garden in small containers.
On Aug. 19, Veralea Swayne, a Seattle Tilth instructor, was teaching Composting for Apartment Dwellers in Victor Steinbrueck Park.
“I love being able to lead positive activities in our public spaces,” Swayne said. “People live downtown, work downtown, so it just makes sense to have classes downtown. It shows people they can grow their own food no matter where they live.”
Swayne has been teaching for three years and said the parks classes draw a variety of people including people who live on boats.
During the composting class, Swayne led the participants in constructing a worm bin that could easily be stored indoors mess-free.
“Worm castings are actually kind of magical,” Swayne said. “They’re a mild fertilizer that helps everything grow so much better.”
Seattle Parks concierge Stephen Wilson helped organize supplies for the composting class and said he enjoys the different groups that come into the parks to participate.
“These classes bring diverse people into the parks, and I love the lively, fun atmosphere,” Wilson said.
Brandon Neuhaus was one of the class participants. He lives in an apartment on Capitol Hill and said he’s recently become interested in growing his own food.
“I was researching classes and this sounded like an awesome opportunity,” Neuhaus said. “I love the idea of taking a class and having the backdrop be a park. It’s nice to be outdoors.”
Seattle Tilth hosts many free classes throughout the summer at Victor Steinbrueck Park and Freeway Park with support from Seattle Parks Center City Program Coordinator Adrienne Caver-Hall and funding from the Pike Place Market Foundation and the Freeway Park Association.
Seattle Tilth’s last class of the summer will be held from 5:30-7 p.m. in Victor Steinbrueck Park on Wednesday, Aug. 27 and will teach fall and wintering gardening in containers. To register, visit http://seattletilth.nonprofitsoapbox.com/-seattle-parks-downtown-seattle/event/388.
Seattle Tilth is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to inspire and educate people to safeguard our natural resources while building an equitable and sustainable local food system. For more information about their year-round programs and opportunities, please visit www.seattletilth.org.
On Saturday, June 21, 67 people from 12 families, including 27 adults and 40 youth, did just that. Residents of Seattle Housing Authority’s nearby High Point Community, the families participated in a free overnight nature immersion experience, many of them visiting Camp Long and camping for the first time.
For the second year the Camp Long Environmental Learning Center partnered with National Wildlife Federation (NWF) for NWF’s annual national initiative the “Great American Backyard Campout,” which aims to get more families outside, even if it’s only in their own backyards.
Families stayed overnight in Camp Long cabins and participated in various activities including forest hikes, night walks, a traditional campfire and a forest stewardship activity.
After getting settled in their cabins on Saturday afternoon, families joined educational organizations in the Camp Long meadow behind the lodge for interactive learning stations.
Seattle Tilth provided gardening information and compost investigations to connect home recycling with the natural systems that exist in nature. Kids got to see live worms and other decomposers in action. Other learning stations included read-aloud multicultural nature stories with Seattle Public Library and making nature crafts from recycled materials with NWF volunteers.
Following a buffet dinner provided by NWF and donations from local vendors, everyone headed to the community campfire circle to learn about building a safe campfire. The children eagerly swapped stories, and a Samoan family borrowed a naturalist’s ukulele to lead the group in song.
Before tucking into their cabins, there was naturalist-led stargazing and night hikes to search for owls and other nocturnal life. Candle luminaries graced the upper trails in a magical glow to illuminate the path for children back to their cabins.
Sunday morning after breakfast, families went on forest walks, learned about the health of Seattle’s forests and its wildlife and helped with forest restoration – pulling invasive ivy and putting mulch on newly planted native plants.
Everyone seemed to get a great dose of Vitamin N (nature activities) and enjoyed being outside together with their community.
An excerpt from a letter sent by one of the Campout participants:
“…Our 9-year-old foster son, has never done anything like a campout before, and this was a HUGE experience for him. We watched him learn and grow in new ways in front of our eyes in 20 hours. This is a kid who whined about reading anything just weeks ago. Having the Seattle Public Library person there with books about nature (and totem poles, etc.) that were just right for him was PERFECT. He read books about animals in the field there. At bedtime, for the FIRST time, he said he’d like to stay up reading a little bit. Please share this with the library people.
“He was afraid of the dark, afraid of bats, etc., and so much of these fears dissolved on this trip because we got to pet little stuffed bats, he got to wake up in a safe cabin in the darkness without any light on. The structure provided by you and your people was so incredible, that there were only positive experiences. This weekend would have been incredibly hard to simulate in any other location, even at a campground because of the numbers of strangers there.
So thank you from the depths of our hearts.”
Enjoy free classes on composting and container gardening at downtown parks this summer
This summer, Seattle Tilth will teach apartment and condominium dwellers how to grow salad greens, herbs and vegetables in containers and how to compost food waste indoors or on balconies or patios. Great for beginning and experienced gardeners, these classes provide new ideas and will help troubleshoot site challenges. Seattle Tilth garden experts will show innovative ways to grow food organically with limited space and reduce food waste for people who don’t have a yard or garden plot.
New classes this year include, “Grow Great Tomatoes in Containers” and “Grow Edible & Ornamental Flowers in Containers.” Classes are free and sponsored by Seattle Parks and Recreation, Freeway Park Association and Pike Place Market. The schedule is as follows:
Free Classes by Location:
Thursdays from 5:30–7 p.m.
June 26 Grow Salad in Containers
VICTOR STEINBRUECK PARK 2000 Western Ave., Seattle, WA 98121
Tuesdays from 5:30–7 p.m.
July 15 Composting for Apartment Dwellers
July 29 Grow Salad in Containers
Aug. 5 Herb Gardening in Containers
Aug. 19 Composting for Apartment Dwellers
About Seattle Tilth Seattle Tilth inspires and educates people to safeguard our natural resources while building an equitable and sustainable local food system. Programs in Seattle and King County include environmental, farm, garden and cooking education, plus food distribution, volunteer opportunities and community events.
For more information, please visit www.seattletilth.org or call 206-633-0451 ext. 128.
This summer, Seattle Tilth will teach apartment and condominium dwellers how to grow vegetables and herbs in containers and how to compost food waste indoors or on balconies or patios. Great for beginning and experienced gardeners, these classes provide new ideas and troubleshoot site challenges. Seattle Tilth garden experts will show how to grow food organically and reduce waste for people who don’t have a yard or P-Patch plot.
Grow Food in the Center of the City – Kickoff Event!
Sunday, May 1, 11 a.m.-3 p.m.
Victor Steinbrueck Park, 2001 Western Ave. north of the Pike Place Market
Stop by the park and build a portable salad garden and talk to local gardening and composting experts. Chat with people from Seattle Tilth, Urban Land Army, Seattle Parks and Recreation, The Garden Hotline, Master Composters, Central Co-op, Metropolitan Market and more.
Victor Steinbrueck Park; 2000 Western Ave.
Wed., May 11, 5:30 – 7:30 p.m. Summer Vegetable Gardening in Containers
Wed., May 18, 5:30 – 7:30 p.m. Container Herb Gardening
Wed., May 25, 5:30 – 7:30 p.m. Composting for Apartment Dwellers
Thurs., June 2, 5:30 – 7:30 p.m. Container Herb Gardening
Thurs., June 9, 5:30 – 7:30 p.m. Container Salad Gardening
Thurs., June 16, 5:30 – 7:30 p.m. Composting for Apartment Dwellers
Wed., July 13, 5:30 – 7:30 p.m. Container Herb Gardening
Wed., July 20, 5:30 – 7:30 p.m. Fall and Winter Vegetables in Containers
Wed., July 27, 5:30 – 7:30 p.m. Composting for Apartment Dwellers
Thurs., Sept, 1, 5:30 – 7:30 p.m. Container Salad Gardening
Thurs., Sept. 8, 5:30 – 7:30 p.m. Container Herb Gardening
Thurs., Sept. 15, 5:30 – 7:30 p.m. Composting for Apartment Dwellers`
Cascade Playground, 333 Pontius Ave. N
Sun., May 15, 10 a.m. – noon Container Herb Gardening
Sun., May 22, 10 a.m. – noon Container Salad Gardening
Sun., May 29, 10 a.m. – noon Composting for Apartment Dwellers
Freeway Park; 700 Seneca St.
Thurs., June 2, noon – 1 p.m. Container Herb Gardening
Thurs., June 9, noon – 1 p.m. Container Salad Gardening
Thurs., June 15, noon – 1 p.m. Composting for Apartment Dwellers
Wed., Aug. 10, noon – 1 p.m. Container Herb Gardening
Wed., Aug. 17, noon – 1 p.m. Fall and Winter Vegetables in Containers
Wed., Aug. 24, noon – 1 p.m. Composting for Apartment Dwellers
Cal Anderson Park, 1635 11th Ave. E
Sat., June 4, 10 a.m. – noon Container Herb Gardening
Sat., June 11, 10 a.m. – noon Container Salad Gardening
Sat., June 18, 10 a.m. – noon Composting for Apartment Dwellers
Belltown Cottage Park, 2512 Elliott Ave.
Sun., July 17, 10 a.m. – noon Container Herb Gardening
Sun., July 24, 10 a.m. – noon Fall and Winter Vegetables in Containers
Sun., July 31, 10 a.m. – noon Composting for Apartment Dwellers
Counterbalance Park, 2 Roy St.
Sat., July 1, 10 a.m. – noon Container Herb Gardening
Sat., July 9, 10 a.m. – noon Fall and Winter Vegetables in Containers
Sat., July 16, 10 a.m. – noon Composting for Apartment Dwellers
All classes are FREE; participants need to register ahead of time. Find out how to register at www.seattletilth.org/learn/classes-and-workshops/parks or call 206-633-5045, ext. 115.
Founded in 1978, Seattle Tilth is a nationally recognized nonprofit educational organization dedicated to cultivating a sustainable community, one garden at a time. Seattle Tilth’s mission is to inspire and educate people to grow food organically, conserve natural resources, and support local food systems to cultivate a healthy urban environment and community. Programs include classes for adults, children and families, green jobs training for low income communities, the Garden Hotline, the Master Composter/Soil Builder program, volunteer opportunities, community learning gardens throughout the Puget Sound region, and community events including the Edible Plant Sales, Chicken Coop and Urban Farm Tour, and Harvest Fair.