The Saint Michael's College Organic Gardens Are Expanding!

In the fall of 2014, students, staff, and faculty broke ground for a 1.7-acre permaculture site on campus. In the spring and summer of 2015, a fruit and berry orchard will be established as well as other perennial and annual vegetables, herbs, and flowers. 

Did you know: the mission of the Organic Garden Program is to:
(1) Enhance the educational experience of the campus community by providing an outdoor classroom for hands-on, experiential learning opportunities as it relates to food systems and sustainable agriculture,
(2) Support existing programs on campus and carry on the Edmundite tradition of social justice and service as it relates to food issues in our surrounding community.
What is Permaculture?

Permaculture is the study and practice of creating socially just and ecologically regenerative systems through careful analysis and thoughtful design. Permaculture presents a whole systems approach that integrates people, plants, animals, landscapes, economies, built environment, and energy to ensure that humans have the ability to respond to critical environmental and social changes with localized resilience and abundance.

History of the Site

This site was chosen as a new garden space not only for ideal growing conditions, but also for its significance to Saint Michael’s social justice heritage. Throughout the late 1980s and early 1990s, Father John Stankiewicz, SSE ’37, and volunteers from the SMC community grew over one ton of vegetables for the Chittenden Emergency Food Shelf on the same plot of land. 
Plans for the Site
The site is meant to provide a hands-on educational space where students can develop a deeper relation to local ecology and community through agriculture. In addition to providing food for the Intervale Gleaning and Food Rescue Program, the space will also serve as a wildlife sanctuary for birds, bats, bees, and other pollinators. 

Stay tuned for further announcements about the permaculture site and opportunities for you to be involved in its development! We're hoping to name the site in the near future with help from the campus community. More details to come.


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