Lawrence Food Garden Tour

Currently, we live in a 750 sq ft apartment and have a table on our balcony that supports our “garden” (ahem, herbs). Nevertheless, I dream of the day we have a sweet bungalow with an expansive garden cultivating a variety of fruits and veggies. In the meantime I can take notes during the annual Lawrence Food Garden Tour. This event is a self-guided tour around some of Lawrence’s finer personal and community gardens. I had picked up a flyer about it at the Farmers’ Market a few weeks back, and it caught my interest. This free event included a total of 18 gardens to visit and gardeners on site to share knowledge and discuss methods. These lush gardens included fruit trees, chicken-keeping, herbs, raised beds, and much more. The event took place this past Saturday, from 9am-noon, and 5pm-8pm, so we headed out with some dear friends to see what it was all about.

The Garden Spot, 801 Penn St.

Hugelkultur method of gardening.

The first stop was The Garden Spot at 801 Penn. St. This is a new community garden, accessible to all, with space for low-income residents as well as those using wheelchairs. Organic methods are found here, such as hugelkultur. If you’re not familiar with this (like me… “Hoogle what??”), take a looksie here, it’s pretty cool stuff. I loved learning about this innovative method. Of course, it requires large chunks of wood…

Quite the woody matter here.

The second stop in line was Cosmic Beauty School’s Urban Permaculture Site at 1145 Penn. St. Two years of bio-remediation of clay soil created a healthy basis for this garden (if you can’t tell, I’m lifting the text from the pamphlet…). This “not-yet-completely-defined phenomena” fosters holistic health, permaculture, and social justice (sign me up!). The garden itself is quite the site; seemingly bursting at the edges with lively greens and blossoming fruits.

Cosmic Beauty School, 1145 Penn. St.

Check out them greens.

Baby strawberries peeking through!

Plenty of info to be shared, too.

Another stop we made was to PermaCommons Community Garden at 1304 Penn. St. This new Common Ground garden serves to teach members ethics and principles of sustainable living by working with permaculture (need a hint?). This was a cute keyhole garden – meaning it was designed so that each plant could be accessible for the gardener. The layout of the garden made it easy to walk around, for sure.

PermaCommons Community Garden

Again, beautiful greens all around.

Our final stop was at the Lawrence Community Orchard, easternmost lot on Garfield, near 13th and Delaware. This is a Lawrence Fruit Tree Project initiative on one of the city’s Common Ground plots. This 1-year-old orchard uses permaculture techniques to nurture fruit trees, shrubs and perennials. Note to self: in five years, come out here to collect some tasty community fruits!

Lawrence Community Orchard, near 13th and Delaware.

In total, we visited six gardens between the hours of 9am and noon. The variety of foods, garden designs, and plot sizes was amazing. It’s definitely a testament to the viability (and sustainability) of certain veggies and fruits. My extra small tabletop patio garden certainly won’t feed me year-long, but it’s a solid start in the right direction for my future mega-sized community garden.

2 Responses to “Lawrence Food Garden Tour”

  1. Meryl says:

    I totally missed the tour this year, so thanks for the recap! Good luck with your herbs–that’s exactly how I started too.

  2. Mrs. Ring says:

    Such an amazing tour! Thanks so much for telling us about it and letting us go with you :)