Trips to see beautiful gardens and farms plus exciting new workshops that can help make your home and community gardening efforts a success highlight Greater Newark Conservancy’s recently released Spring/Summer 2016 Programming Newsletter.  The comprehensive guide showcases a wide range of upcoming activities and opportunities to get involved and contribute to a greener and healthier environment in the Greater Newark area. A complete listing of all upcoming spring and summer programs is also available on citybloom.org.

Spring into spring and summer by participating in the annual Spring Block Party and Plant Sale (Saturday, May 7), Strawberry Jam (Saturday, June 4), Garlic-Palooza (Saturday, August 6), and other events, environmentally focused workshops, community greening projects and field trips for everyone from school children and families, to young professionals and retired seniors.

“With spring on its way, there’s lots to do and learn that’s fun and educational for individuals and groups,” noted Robin Dougherty, the Conservancy’s Executive Director. “Our programs and services help people connect while planting seeds, growing community and changing lives.”

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Exciting Trips

Green thumbs and non-gardeners alike will appreciate the beauty of the diverse gardens on the Hoboken Secret Garden Tour (Sunday, June 5), the Walking Tour of the Lower East Side (Saturday, June 25), at Well Sweep Herb Farm (Saturday, July 16) and Duke Farms Community Garden (Saturday, July 9). Costs range from as little as $5 to $35 per person. Bring a bag lunch and water and wear comfortable shoes and clothing. Sorry, ages 15 and up only.

Special Events

While the Conservancy offers a variety of programs throughout the year, the urban environment comes alive with the advent of warmer weather. The Prudential Outdoor Learning Center on Prince Street offers self-guided tours and visits even if there are no events taking place starting on Saturday, April 2nd.

Strawberry Jam at the Court Street Urban Farm features freshly grown strawberries to taste, demonstrations on how to make tea and strawberry crafts. At Garlic-Palooza, learn about garlic’s health benefits, create garlic crafts and then taste a variety of garlic at the Hawthorne Avenue Farm. For the third consecutive year the Conservancy will also host a Nelson Mandela Birthday Tribute at the Outdoor Learning Center on Friday, July 15th, all part of a long list of events in the months ahead.

Workshops

What better way to enhance your gardens than with a do-it-yourself project? Once a season, from spring through fall, the Conservancy will guide workshops to help participants keep their gardens unique and ever-changing by building new additions like a BYO Planter Box (Saturday, May 21, $30) and a BYO Garden Table (Saturday, August 20, $45). Growing Gardener Workshops help people of all ages get started by focusing on and teaching everything from gardening basics to advanced topics, including a Summer Garden Maintenance Workshop (Saturday, July 9, $5).

Experience the gardens at the Conservancy’s Outdoor Learning Center in a whole new way at Art in the Garden Workshops on Thursday, June 16 and Thursday, September 15 (free). Draw your favorite tree, paint the sunset or press a blooming flower. Art supplies will be provided, but participants are encouraged to bring their own to help unleash their creativity. The educational Second Saturdays program from April through August ($5) is the perfect way to join and support your child as Conservancy staff help connect science, technology, engineering and math (S.T.E.M.) to nature through hands-on, inquiry-based lessons. Children will enjoy outdoor exploration and interactive games covering topics like Veggies, Urban Habitats, Bees and Worms. Parents must stay with their children from PK through 6th graders during the workshops.

Founded in 1987, Greater Newark Conservancy’s mission is to promote environmental stewardship to improve the quality of life in New Jersey’s urban communities through environmental education, community gardening, beautification of neighborhoods, job training and environmental justice.

To register for an upcoming event, trip or workshop, for more information about programs, services and volunteer opportunities or to make a donation, contact Greater Newark Conservancy at 973-642-4646 or visit CityBloom.org. You can also follow news from the Conservancy through social media at Facebook.com/GreaterNewarkConservancy, plus Twitter and Instagram - @Citybloom87.