UWM Spotlight on Excellence: Campus Gardens

Uploaded by uwmnews on 19.11.2012

Nice to pick your lunch before you go in.
That ones ready. Heres a pepper
This was our first project. We did this last year. We wheeled every bit of this compost
through the Physics Building and built these beds.
I think it builds a sense of community; it certainly has with the folks that we have.
Theres a whole range of people. Its nice to get outside of your unit. You know, Ive got
my hands in the dirt, but when I go to work everyday I work on the provosts digital futures
initiatives and things like that so its a variety of things and thats what I like.
Im a master teacher at the UWM Childrens Learning Center. Whats been so great is to increase
what were able to serve the kids for their snacks. Were able to give them really fresh,
delicious produce. They love the watermelons, they love the green beans.
Theres a lot of gardening initiatives going on. Theyre all connected and they are really
connecting a lot of people. Theyre connecting the students, the faculty, the staff, families,
and children.
I think we were hungry for that community. Were a tightknit campus and this gives us
a way to sort of facilitate that. And, were a great part of Milwaukee. Theres such a huge
food movement going on in Milwaukee with the Victory Garden Initiative and Growing Power
and I think we just fit right in to that meld.
You know its funny, I almost like that its a norm. I almost just enjoy that people say,
Oh there are our gardens and thats how we live on campus. Thats the way it should be
and they dont even think twice about it. I actually think that creating that, as the
normal way we go about our business, is the most successful. I think its a true reflection
on who we are.
Now mind you, I am afraid of heights.
Im known as Turkey Teri in Kenosha County for my custom turkey raising and Im also married
to a dairy grain farmer. They asked, Would you be interested in roof top gardening? Virtually
the first time I came up here I was up against the vents. And [the weeds] were quite high
and overgrown so I literally came in with a sickle. We harvested about five buckets
of weeds per day in the beginning
This was a project that we werent sure how well it was going to go and it just flourished
and we are so proud of it. It keeps us definitely keeps us much more sustainable. Instead of
bringing in vegetables or any sort of produce from anywhere else in the country, it keeps
it right here. All the students are getting benefits from these gardens.
Ive kind of got an interest in organic food and urban farming so I ended up up here almost
every day this summer. Its been cool to kind of have my own batch of plants of to nurture.
I love making things change and produce.
I was very proud to show my farmer how well I did on my city farm. It was great.