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3501 New York Ave NE
Washington, DC, 20002
United States


Washington Youth Garden

Filtering by Tag: garden

April Martin


There are an astounding number of butterflies fluttering around the Washington Youth Garden these days. When our in-house school garden coordinator passed along a lovely photograph of a visiting Monarch, I had to call up our long-time volunteer “Butterfly Bob” to find out what is going on in the DC area.

While he wasn’t sure why we’re seeing so many more than usual right now, he does know that everything is related.

“The life cycles of butterflies are largely tuned by other things in nature.  Butterflies don’t hatch in the middle of winter.  Assuming everything is average, the flowers, the plants and butterflies arrive all together.

Late spring, May, there’s a pretty big surge in the number of species and there’s another one later in the summer, about now, and there will be another one in the fall.  The Monarchs, for example, you see maybe a few all year long.  [Currently] most of them are in the northern US and southern Canada.  When their migration starts, we’ll see a big surge of them in the fall.  They’ll lay their eggs and start hatching and that new batch will go to Mexico.  Most butterflies are in chrysalis in the winter, some are eggs, some are larva and very few are adults.  Even in January and February there will be a few under the leaf litter and in the bark of trees, like Mourning Cloak Butterflies.

Growing and cooking with the whole family

April Martin

Our Growing Food.. Growing Together program got off to a strong start this month with new and returning families coming together to get (re)acquainted with each other and the garden. To put their growing skills into practice, each family started a mini-plot to grow their own summer crops. Sprouting gardeners of all ages braved the heat and got their hands in the soil, harvesting, turning soil and planting. They’ll get to see what works and what doesn’t as they tend to tomatoes, peppers, beans, eggplants and more. 

It’s not too late for families to apply for the two remaining sessions on August 3rd and August 4th. This Saturday, Chef T will join us for an interactive and inspiring cooking demonstration, making a meal straight from the garden. Read more about how to apply on our website.

Companions in planting and learning

April Martin

WYG’s School Garden Coordinator Bethany Hanna Pokress taught Kindergarteners at Mary McLeod Bethune PCS about the benefits of companion planting by planting a Three Sisters garden in Bethune’s outdoor learning garden.

Students planted corn, bean and squash seeds in the three large containers at the entrance of the school. Stay tuned for photos and updates on our partner schools’ burgeoning garden beds!

You can read more about the Iroquois tradition of Three Sisters gardening here.