Go Green: Lexington Community Bed

- As community gardens across Rochester help families put food on the table this summer, organizers at one garden are hoping to make that effort sustainable year round.

The Lexington Community Garden lies on the site of a former Rochester subway bed.  Now, it's covered with beds of fruits and veggies.  "The idea is to get more healthy food into the community," said Foodlink Garden Project Coordinator Bryan Babcock.

Foodlink leases land from the city and provides neighboring families with materials and the know-how to help their garden plots grow.  "We're turning space here that was just a field in the city into a space that's providing thousands of pounds of fresh fruits and vegetables that are going right back into the community," said Babcock.

Among the garden's tenants are a group of immigrants from Nepal.  Lachuman Pokhrel grows veggies for his wife and two sons.  "I like peas, tomato, chili, cucumber, onions," he said.

Foodlink expects over 4,000 pounds of food will be grown this year from its 12 community gardens in the city.  Babcock hopes the Lexington location can become a hub because a new greenhouse is being constructed at the site.  When it's completed by the end of the month, it will provide residents with year round growing opportunities.  "This will allow this project to be sustainable, so instead of buying seeds and plants, they can save seeds from previous years and bring them to this hoop house and start them all themselves," said Babcock.

The community garden provides Pokhrel and others access to fresh food and much more.  "Everybody that I speak with here is really excited to have the space to grow, and not only just a little bit of space to grow but a sense of community and belonging," said Babcock.

Foodlink will host a Garden Extravaganza Harvest Party at the Lexington Community Garden on Friday, September 20.  It will offer gardening workshops, nutrition education and cooking demonstrations.

For more information, call Bryan Babcock at (585) 328-3380, x145. 

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