Toast to UTC

Socially Conscious Philadelphia, a local fundraising group for Philadelphia non-profits is sponsoring a happy hour event for UTC at Misconduct Tavern, located at 1511 Locust. This Tuesday, April 3rd, from 5:30 till 8 you can pay $10 for delicious food and one free drink at the bar. All of the proceeds are donated to UTC and will go towards funding our gardening programs. We welcome you to enjoy happy hour with us and we appreciate your donation. See you there!

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The seedlings are sprouting up!

Seedlings of the early crops for the farm are sprouting up, looking like miniatures of their mature selves and making the basement at UTC very green. The group includes peppers, tomatoes, several kinds of kale, lettuces, collards and herbs that will be grown for Neighborhood Foods CSA, and the Rittenhouse and neighborhood markets. Also planted – a variety of flowers to attract pollinators and add color to the gardens!

Staff members are taking turns watering and last week, farmers Ryan and Quenzell worked at transplanting the little seedlings into bigger flats and pots.

Eric Blasco, professional gardener and friend of UTC, is helping with the seed-starting, sharing his expertise and providing some heirloom seeds for both both veggies and flowers.  He is involved with Seed Savers Exchange and works with a farmer growing heirloom seeds. Many thanks to Eric!

The 2012 Volunteer Year Has Begun!

It’s not quite mid March and UTC has already welcomed volunteers from three different organizations!  Eleven AmeriCorps volunteers came out to the Farm at the end of February. They worked at filling the beds in the high tunnel in preparation for some early crops such as arugula and lettuces. Last week, a group of ten students and two faculty members from Piedmont Community College in Charlotte, North Carolina, traveled to Philly on their Alternative Spring Break program.  On Tuesday they started with a tour of all the gardens and then worked at a site at 54th and Westminster, leveling a huge leaf pile and bundling rose bush cuttings for disposal.  Having noticed lots of trash that had accumulated over the winter at the Pearl Street garden, they volunteered to come back Friday and clean it up!  And they did!

On Thursday, two volunteers from the Art House, a recovery house located near Concourse Lake Park in Fairmount Park, did a fantastic clean up of the park including “fishing” litter out of the lake.

Join us at the Farm at N 53rd Street and Wyalusing Avenue – we will be there the next two Saturdays, weather permitting.  Email Sue Witte, volunteer coordinator, at suegwitte@gmail.com to sign on or if you have questions about volunteering.