H Street Farms rooftop garden (Photo: Niraj Ray)
Some people garden to stock their kitchen, and others to liven up a yard, but what would it look like to garden with the planet in mind? This Earth Day, celebrate Mother Earth with Niraj Ray, founder of Cultivate the City, a D.C. organization of urban farmers dedicated to locally grown food who plant in school yards, empty lots, and rooftops and collaborate with community gardens, schools, restaurants, families, and businesses.
Ray discusses the group’s work as she guides participants on a tour of one of Cultivate the City’s community gardens. Along the way, she answers questions of interest to home gardeners who want to choose plants with an eye to leaving the planet a better place: What plants are good for worms, and which are natural insecticides? Which can prevent erosion, and which can hold water in a rain garden? Which are native to our area, and which are pollinators?
Afterward, Ray leads a hands-on activity to get you started on saving the planet.