City’s Neighborhood Grow Center Opens, Offering Free Workshops and Greenery

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At last weekend's inaugural Grow Center, the chicken coop building workshop was a big hit.
At last weekend’s inaugural Grow Center, the chicken coop building workshop was a big hit.

Each weekend this April, Baltimore’s Office of Sustainability is piloting the Neighborhood Grow Center.  Taking place every Saturday and Sunday this April from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Baltimore Community ToolBank (1224 Wicomico Street in Carroll-Camden), the Neighborhood Grow Center offers visitors free greening workshops, free plant materials, and locally-sourced gardening supplies.

The Neighborhood Grow Center will host 16 free greening workshops. The classes range from building rain barrels, outdoor chairs, and edible rain gardens to garden planning and design, adopting vacant lots, and terrarium and candle-making. Click here to register for the workshops.

The Neighborhood Grow Center will also feature two local waste-to-wealth enterprises that are turning Baltimore’s trash into treasure. Visitors will be able to purchase reclaimed wood, marble and bricks harvested from Baltimore’s demolished row homes by Details Deconstruction. Where possible, the workshops are using the salvaged materials. Chesapeake Compost Works turns Baltimore’s food scraps into compost, and the team will be on-hand selling their compost products.

Get your hands dirty and learn to make rain barrels, raised gardens or outdoor chairs using reclaimed materials. Last weekend, these folks made chicken coops!
Get your hands dirty and learn to make rain barrels, raised gardens or outdoor chairs using reclaimed materials. Last weekend, these folks made chicken coops!

Have you noticed the recent greenlaurel articles highlighting the growing number of “greening” partnerships between government, businesses, foundations and non-profits? Similar to the Civic Works’ Solar Training Program and the Inner Harbor’s  all-hands-on-deck approach, the Neighborhood Grow Center is another team effort. The Neighborhood Grow Center is a project of the Baltimore Office of Sustainability, Department of Public Works, Baltimore Community ToolBank, Humanim, Parks & People Foundation, Blue Water Baltimore, Chesapeake Bay Foundation, and the Neighborhood Design Center. Whew, there’s more. The Chesapeake Bay Trust, The Abell Foundation, and Tour Dem Parks provided the ever-critical funding.

The Office of Sustainability’s goal is to eventually launch a network of permanent sites throughout Baltimore to make greening accessible for all city residents.  For more information, visit here

Laurel Peltier
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Laurel Peltier

Laurel writes the environmental GreenLaurel column every other Thursday in the Baltimore Fishbowl. A graduate of UVA's MBA program, she spends her time with her family and making "all things green" interesting.
Laurel Peltier
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