Community gardens in the city are being celebrated for Urban Agriculture Week.
The state secretary of agriculture made a visit to Erie on Monday to tour those gardens.
The Sisters of Saint Joseph and Erie Public Schools have created opportunities for city residents to get involved with agriculture.
State Secretary Russel Redding said that he’s impressed with the progress.
Community gardens in the city are being recognized during Urban Agriculture Week.
The Pennsylvania Secretary visited Erie on Monday, getting a first hand look at the city’s green spaces, including the Sisters of Saint Joseph Gardens.
The Sisters of Saint Joseph Neighborhood Network maintains eight urban gardens across the city.
“I think every community with agriculture is a better community. You see it here both with productivity and the pride that’s around with feeding people who some have access to food on a regular basis, and a lot don’t. You have a work force component inside the Saint Joe’s piece which we like alot,” said Russel Redding, PA State Secretary of Agriculture.
The Sisters of Saint Joseph gardens empower more than 60 families with increased food access and hands on learning.
Secretary Redding also toured the gardens at East Middle School to see how faculty and students have embraced agricultural curriculum with gardens.
“Both the culture of ag and the food inside the system of education, and using ag as a science and a back drop to teach science is really amazing,” said Secretary Redding.
One representative from the Sisters of Saint Joseph said that it’s important to highlight the efforts of these young farmers who are investing in their community.
“It’s a great experience for our teens. So they work with us about six months out of the year to do everything from starting the seedlings, to maintaining crops, and then selling them at out farmers market every Monday, as well as working with the neighbors in the community,” said Gretchen Gallagher Durney, Manager of Gardens and Green Space.
The Little Italy Farmers Market hosted by the Sisters of Saint Joseph is just now wrapping up.
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The market runs each Monday from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m.