Edible Gardens Sprout Up Around Campus


Ricky Zhao / The Triton

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Two new edible gardens were installed near Sixty-Four North and at the Old Student Center in Fall Quarter 2018.

The edible garden located on the west patio of Sixty-Four North was installed in August 2018 by Los Angeles-based urban farming company Lettuce Grow. This garden is actually a set of growing towers that produce a variety of leafy greens. The vegetables produced here supply the 64 Degrees salad bar, Sixty-Four North’s house salad, and 64 Degrees’ demonstration station.

Planted in the middle of November, the garden at the Old Student Center is on the patio of the Thich Nhat Hanh Room and is planted by Urban Plantations, a landscaping company that specializes in edible gardens. An assortment of leafy green vegetables, berries, and herbs have been planted in this garden. The plants grown here will go exclusively to the Triton Food Pantry.

The Triton Food Pantry is an Associated Students of UCSD (ASUCSD) initiative that provides food relief to students. Previously, most of the food that had been provided had been purchased. “We buy most of the produce and other food from places like Sysco and a local garden. We spend $73,200 annually on produce alone,” Student Manager Sherlock Li stated. The edible garden will be the pantry’s first attempt at growing its own produce.

According to Li, the garden is a commendable initiative but may not fully serve student needs.

“The garden is mainly an opportunity for a sustainable pantry in the future. Judging from the size of the garden, it won’t be much alleviation for the pantry, but it will definitely set the precedent for future gardens.”

Former AS President Lesly Figueroa spearheaded the idea for the Triton Food Pantry to grow its own food.

“My hopes for it is to serve fresh produce to the pantry and also demonstrate an educational opportunity of farm-to-table, which will be an excellent addition to basic needs efforts at the campus-level. I continue to be impressed by the student and campus advocacy to ensure basic needs are met, and doing so in an innovative and creative way makes the work worthwhile and sustainable for years to come.”

Tajairi Neuson is a Staff Writer for The Triton. You can follow him @tajairi  

This article was corrected on January 11, 2019 at 3:50 p.m. An earlier version of this article misspelled former AS President Lesly Figueroa’s name.