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Micheltorena Elementary School

Recess time at Micheltorena Garden

Recess time at Micheltorena Garden

Boy, the kids love the garden! Today during their recess time, the students poured into the garden and worked/played with a big pile of beautiful oak mulch delivered for free to the garden by J&T Tree Co. The kids were pure physical activity as they mounted the pile, shoveled mulch into wheelbarrows and distributed the…

Heart of LA (HOLA) after school Arts program visits Micheltorena

  The kids that attend HOLA ‘s Art after school program and their teachers Nara and Patricia visited Micheltorena Garden yesterday.  They were very interested in knowing how to grow food in an urban setting, composting and warm farming, be water wise, solar energy and community involvement in the garden. After a quick talk and…

Solar Panels atop Micheltorena Garden Shed

Solar Panels atop Micheltorena Garden Shed

Today, led by volunteer extraordinaire Aaron Murphy (from the Echo Park Time Bank) we installed the solar panels (which connect to batteries and converters)  atop the garden shed we built last week. The shed will hold garden tools, collect rain water into barrels and garner the sun’s rays to power the irrigation timer, lights, music,…

Micheltorena Garden new shed doubles as rain catching demo

Micheltorena Garden new shed doubles as rain catching demo

Today we installed a gutter and downspout into DWP provided trash can turned rain barrel. We’ll be able to use some rain water for the garden but most importantly, the whole neighborhood will be able to see how easy it is to implement and try it at home. Stay tuned for the upcoming triple threat…

A new Shed for Micheltorena Garden

A new Shed for Micheltorena Garden

Community members came together in stellar fashion to build a garden shed for Micheltorena. We had school parent Peter Healy, Teacher Lisa Lewis’ husband Burnie Neal, Silver Lake neighbors Bill Mahoney, Sergio Scabuzzo and Allison Behrstock, and heading the effort Echo Park Time Bank Members Aaron Murphy and Troy Gilbert form Troy Construction a great…

Micheltorena Garden thrives thanks to community involvement

Micheltorena Garden thrives thanks to community involvement

It takes a village… point in case at the Micheltorena School and Community Garden.  All through the summer the garden stayed open on Wednesdays and Saturdays although the school was out on vacation.  More and more community members, attracted by the garden beauty and warmth, come in and contribute =  Pickling classes, garden maintenance, composting,…

LAWeekly visits Micheltorena Garden and blogs about it and EnrichLA

LAWeekly visits Micheltorena Garden and blogs about it and EnrichLA

LAWeekly’s  Kathy A. MacDonald visited the garden and blogged about us. Here is an excerpt, for the whole article visit LAWeekly’s Blog. “Chalk one up to green. Overlooking traffic-heavy Sunset Boulevard in the heart of Silver Lake, community activists have transformed a former school parking lot into vegetable, herb and flower filled garden at L.A.U.S.D’s…

How to Repurpose Avocado Shells for Seed Planting (Micheltorena Garden Project)

Avocado Shells

LOS ANGELES — When in California, eat avocados! As a result of my California avocado binge, I’m left with a heap of empty avocado shells. Instead of sending them to the compost, I decided to take them last Saturday to the Micheltorena Elementary School garden for a fun garden project. Avocado Shell Seed Trays By planting seeds in avocado shells instead of plastic trays, the seedlings can be transplanted directly… Read more»

Brother blog URBAN FOOD AMERICA writes about Micheltorena and EnrichLA

Brother blog URBAN FOOD AMERICA writes about Micheltorena and EnrichLA

Here is an excerpt, for the full article visit Urban Food America. “Before Micheltorena Elementary School built its community garden, the majority of the schoolgrounds was a vast, empty parking lot adjacent to the noisy West Sunset Boulevard in Silver Lake, Los Angeles. Thanks to a few committed neighborhood volunteers, this public school is now…

Micheltorena School & Community Garden: Reforming Education from the Ground Up

Micheltorena School Garden

LOS ANGELES — Before Micheltorena Elementary School built its community garden, the majority of the schoolgrounds was a vast, empty parking lot adjacent to the noisy West Sunset Boulevard in Silver Lake, Los Angeles. Thanks to a few committed neighborhood volunteers, this public school is now the prideful home of a beautiful and productive community garden. The Micheltorena garden is a real-world testing… Read more»

Pickles!

Pickles!

This Saturday at the Micheltorena Garden, lead by neighbor and volunteer Jason Jones, we pickled some of the garden veggies. About 10 volunteers  brought jars and got together for the experiment, part of exploring different ways of using the garden bounty.  It started about noon after a couple of hours of tending the garden =…

Micheltorena receives gift from Jennie Cook

Micheltorena receives gift from Jennie Cook

Micheltorena Garden received a set of bowls and knives plus a sharpener from Jennie Cook, the tireless crusader for better food in schools. Jennie is a great chef and caterer, and a big supporter of school edible  gardens. She sees the gardens as the portal to healthy eating habits and breaking with the vicious circle…

Just one more Saturday at the Micheltorena Garden

Just one more Saturday at the Micheltorena Garden

This Saturday we had a lot of new people coming to the garden. I taught a class, Urban Beekeeping  101,  on all I learned from being a member of Backwards Beekeepers. A few folk from the Echo Park Time Bank showed up to it, and stayed for a garden produce salad from the bounty the…

The garden salad that took a year to make

The garden salad that took a year to make

It started with a dream, perseverance, attracting like minded folk, designing, raising funds, making a reality the replacing of asphalt by a garden, building, planting, watering, weeding, mulching, composting, loving, meeting more new friends, making music, enjoying the hard work, learning, discovering… and tonight the community got together and created the first salad with veggies…

A mural grows at Micheltorena Elementary

A mural grows at Micheltorena Elementary

Inspired by the success of the garden, parents have been getting together for the last couple of weeks to continue the school beautification. Designed by comics artist -and parent- Jordan Crane, the mural in progress at the kindergarten yard is looking awesome! Stay tuned for the final result…

Enrich LA + Gilt City Volunteer Day

Enrich LA + Gilt City Volunteer Day

The Enrich LA / Gilt City volunteer day on Sat 6/25 was a big success. Gilt raised $2000 for Micheltorena and the food by Chego was excellent. Lisa Novick from Theodore Payne Foundation  was at hand to teach the volunteers the benefits of native plant gardens (minimal water needs and food for native birds and insects)…

“Garden, Grub and Give Back”

“Garden, Grub and Give Back”

This Saturday, June 25th, Micheltorena garden will be participating in a “Gilt City” event.  Attendees will be experiencing a day of giving back to the community, great music, and good eats provided by the Pop-up Chego test-kitchen. Chego is the latest endeavor from chef Roy Choi, the brilliant man who brought you Kogi BBQ and…

Fresh, seasonal, organic veggies make a great salad @ Micheltorena garden

Fresh, seasonal, organic veggies make a great salad @ Micheltorena garden

The time came and the Micheltorena garden is ready for  the kids to harvest veggies, make a salad and learn all about eating fresh seasonal unprocessed foods. The picking was fun, the prepping as well, and all were very open to considering having fresh foods over processed, understood the reasons why and asked lots of…

More Bees and a Well-Deserved Meal

More Bees and a Well-Deserved Meal

      Today at Micheltorena, Leonardo continued the bee demonstration with the observation hive so that every class had a chance to learn about the nature of bees and the art of beekeeping. Leonardo talked about the structure of honeycomb (hexagonal cells), about the different types of bees that make up a colony (worker,…

Bees visit Micheltorena

Bees visit Micheltorena

The Micheltorena Garden had today a visit by Kirk Anderson of Backwards Beekeepers, a Los Angeles Urban Beekeeping group dedicated to natural organic beekeeping. Kirk brought an observation hive and some beekeeping gear and equipment. The kids were fascinated about being able to observe the bees at work an get real close to them without danger…

Micheltorena Update

Micheltorena Update

        Our milk carton repurposing project has really taken off. Teachers and students have been diligent in collecting and cleaning milk cartons, effectively diverting a significant amount of waste from landfill. Ms. Markarian and Ms. Lewis’ classes have been particularly enthusiastic, coming to the garden every Wednesday to transplant seedlings into their…

Gardens as bridges

Gardens as bridges

There are all kinds of positive benefits to installing gardens in our schools. To list some: -reconnect with the sources of our food -rekindle/initiate healthy eating habits -spend time outdoors while growing food -fight child obesity and other related health issues -learn agriculture themes like planting, soil building, composting -learn science, biology, math in an…

Micheltorena Update

Micheltorena Update

Over the past few weeks, a lot has been accomplished at the garden. Mr. Wurmfeld and I have given lessons on the anatomy of seeds to many classes, including Ms. Markarian’s kindergartners and Ms. Lewis’ 3rd and 4th graders. We’ve shown the students how to plant seeds, and explained to them how the embryo inside…

Kids Love Worms!

Kids Love Worms!

Today Ms. Markarian’s kindergartners showed off their garden book, full of drawings of their favorite things in the garden, including the worms in the vermicompost bin.  Students of all grade levels have learned to love playing with the worms: the first step towards appreciation of the vital role worms and other decomposers play in the…

Replacing 20,000 sq.ft. of asphalt with gardens!

Replacing 20,000 sq.ft. of asphalt with gardens!

With the support of LAUSD facilities, principals and teachers, parents and community members Enrich LA is moving ahead with the goal of replacing asphalt with gardens in school campuses. Our present and upcoming garden projects in LAUSD campuses total 31,500 sq.ft. including 20,000 sq.ft. of concrete removal! We believe in replacing asphalt with green spaces…

Learning about composting at the Micheltorena Garden

Learning about composting at the Micheltorena Garden

Miss Peres Peña’s class has been a big fan of the garden since it’s inception. The kids love visiting the compost and worm bins, and Miss Peña used the opportunity to teach them about composting, organic matter, decomposition; the kids follow week by week the process of green and brown leaves, kitchen castoffs and coffee…

Micheltorena Garden in Silver Lake- Wednesday Edition 1

Micheltorena Garden in Silver Lake- Wednesday Edition 1

All big smiles the kids started pouring, class after class, into the garden for fun outdoor learning and playing. Of course everybody wanted to water, but they also were very interested in learning about tree roots and soil erosion with Charlie, soil composition with Erik, tomato planting with Susan, and seed planting with Alex. The…