This little oasis has been a fixture in the Southwest Philadelphia neighborhood since 1992. Over many years this all-volunteer garden community has stayed true to its mission to provide a transformative educational and safe space for children, youth and families who have limited access to fresh food sources. Their goal is to help resolve inequities within the local food system while educating the community. They achieve this through seed saving and community-based actions emphasizing accountability, sovereignty, education, and unity. All are welcome to assist in achieving PCG’s mission.
The garden features shared communal beds and volunteers’ plant while learning. PCG has two apple trees; an enormous fig tree; lettuces; kale; tomatoes; spinach; herbs including basil, rosemary, parsley, mint, and peppers; lavender; grapes and a variety of other natural foods volunteers and community families enjoy eating. There is also a greenhouse funded by grants obtained through the Neighborhood Garden Trust (NGT), Pennsylvania Horticultural Society, and Philadelphia Department of Housing and Community Development.
PCG has evolved over the past five years by implementing changes in strategy and approach to ensure fulfillment of their mission. A major part of the strategy included joining NGT to ensure the preservation of the garden for the community. PCG also became a ‘seed saving’ garden working with True Love Seeds and sharing history and stories about seed origins. Seed saving is a critical component of PCG’s sustainability. Seed saver beds are planned each year and for 2021 PCG has planted African Diasporic seed crops of Nigerian Spinach, also called Lagos Spinach and Efo Shoko (Yuruba) as well as the Truelove Holstein Southern Pea. PCG seeds are sold through the Truelove Seed Company provide a source of funding for the garden and programs.
The garden has always been a healing place for the community and to promote better mental health PCG is currently working with mental health professionals with a plan to leverage the garden’s peaceful environment to offer Art Therapy.
This spotlight on PCG shows a positive outlook for the future of this community garden as they continue to Educate, Feed and Seed!
For more information about PCG and activities visit IG and Facebook or visit the garden on the second Saturdays of the month for community volunteer days.
The Pentridge Children’s Garden
4929 Pentridge Street
(Between 49th & 50th St. – one block south of Baltimore Ave.)
Archival Blog: http://thepentridgechildrensgarden.blogspot.com/