Overall Rating Gold - expired
Overall Score 74.18
Liaison Allie Schwartz
Submission Date Nov. 30, 2012
Executive Letter Download

STARS v1.1

Columbia University
ER-T2-2: Organic Garden

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 0.25 / 0.25 Dan Held
Assistant Vice President
Strategic Communications, Columbia University Facilities and Operations
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution have an on-campus garden where students are able to gain organic farming and/or gardening experience?:

A brief description of the garden:

Columbia has three gardens one on the Morningside Campus managed by students with the support of Facilities, the second is a rooftop garden on the Medical Campus, and the third garden is at the Nevis/Lamont Doherty Earth Observatory campus.

The 1500 sq ft garden, located in the main quadrant of the Morningside Campus, was founded by CU Food Sustainability Project (CUFSP), a student group which allows students participate in organic gardening on campus. Student volunteers coordinate maintain the garden year-round. The garden is on its third growing season, and the bulk of the produce grown is kale and tomatoes, most of which go to the volunteers at harvest time. The project hosts a Harvest Meal each year, and shares the dinner with residents of the local General Grant Houses Community Center, as a way to interact with the community and raise awareness of nutrition and other food issues. Watering for the garden is done manually with a hose, and there is also a rainwater catchment to reduce water use. CUFSP maintains a composting center for its own use in the garden, as well. CUFSP hosts potlucks about once a month with produce from the garden when available, accompanied by movies when weather permits.

At CUMC, there is a Bard Hall rooftop garden; the administration provides all products (dirt, bins, supplies), while students have the option to plant whatever seeds they would like to grow. Most choose to plant vegetables, which they then pick and use in their own kitchens. It does apply organic gardening techniques wherever possible. No pesticides are used in the garden. The garden has ample sunlight and watering is done through natural rainfall.

The Nevis garden is a community garden that Columbia provides a ½ acre of free access to grow fruits, vegetables, flowers and herbs that is open to all students, faculty, staff and community residents to plant. The garden is maintained by volunteer community members.

The website URL where information about the garden is available:

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