March Planting Event

Categories: Tres Hermanas

During our March planting event, we installed 16 raised beds at 4 apartment complexes where we have approximately 30 Afghan families living. Households can opt to have their own bed or share them communally. We tried to incorporate culturally relevant plants such as a native variety of sumac bush which is extremely drought tolerant and whose berries can be dried and used as seasoning, as well as added to lemonade for color and taste. We also planted a lot of mint, lettuce and spinach as these grow well in partially shaded areas (a challenge of residential planting), and mint is commonly used for tea and in other dishes. We also filled some beds with drought tolerant flowers like marigolds to add a bit of color to the courtyards. Quite a few of our clients came out and joined us for the event, and we had a lunch gathering after that was catered by one of our Syrian refugee families who recently opened Al Alwan Café in Albuquerque. Many non-client residents/neighbors also came out to see what was happening, and since we had brought interpreters for the event, it was the first time many of our clients could easily communicate with their neighbors to share their experience in gardening as well as what brought them to this country. It was a great experience and we couldn’t have done it without our amazing volunteers!