N° 53 — May 12, 2021
Please enjoy our regular updates and insights from FONA, the U.S. National Arboretum, and our award-winning Washington Youth Garden.
The National Arboretum has implemented a temporary traffic plan through mid-May to keep the grounds safe for drivers, walkers, and all visitors. Vehicles will enter the Arboretum only using the New York Avenue entrance (3501 New York Ave, NE) but may exit using either the New York Avenue or R Street gates.
Celebrating 50 Years
Washington Youth Garden is turning 50!

Since 1971, our garden has served thousands of students all over Washington, DC and provided hands-on education to connect youth to food, the land, and each other.
Over the next year, we will celebrate our successes and the people who have built it into what it is today.

To celebrate our birthday, we are also investing in 3 key components to ensure DC children are immersed in inspiring garden programs for the next 50 years: we are redesigning our garden, adapting our School Garden Support program, and expanding our Green Ambassador Program. 
Washington Youth Garden is full of 50 years of history and memories. Visit our new anniversary webpage, explore about the garden's history, and learn about our anniversary projects.

We want to hear your stories, too! Share your own story or sentiment that highlights your experience with Washington Youth Garden — we might feature your message in our birthday video!

AAPI Heritage Month
During Asian American Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month, we are reflecting on the role food plays in connecting cultures and communities. In Washington Youth Garden, we grow many foods that are found in the different cultures and kitchens throughout our surrounding community.

This year, we are growing sesame, hakurei turnips, mizuna mustard greens, tatsoi, and bok choy in our garden to teach visitors about the role these foods play throughout Asian cuisines. While we have grown some of these plants in the past, our Garden Coordinator Emilia is especially excited to grow and harvest sesame seeds for the first time in WYG!
DC Community Fridge Collective provides access to free, fresh produce by stocking fridges like this across the city.
"This year, we piloted a new program for our returning Green Ambassadors called the Guild. For Green Ambassadors who joined our program at the first tier as Farm Crew members, the Guild is the next tier of community engagement and garden-based experiences they can participate in.

The Guild's main focus is to develop leadership and professional skills by fostering meaningful community projects in the food and agriculture space..."

Read more in our update on the Guild's project with community fridges.

In the News
Washington Youth Garden received the Jane L. Taylor Award this year from the American Horticultural Society. What a wonderful 50th birthday present — thank you AHS!

Given in honor of Jane L. Taylor, a youth advocate, horticulturalist, and educator, this award is "given to an individual, organization, or program that has inspired and nurtured future horticulturalists through efforts in children's and youth gardening."

Cicada City
Three species of 17-year periodical cicadas are about to emerge in our region in mid-May. In case you missed the recent cicada lecture hosted by the U.S. National Arboretum and U.S. Botanic Garden, get up to speed with this quick video from the USDA Agricultural Research Service.

From our Friends:
Holden Arboretum
Join the Holden Arboretum tomorrow evening for the next installment of their Growing Black Roots virtual lecture series. Every month, this free series dives into the historical legacy of Black botanists from a broad range of botanical disciplines and highlights pathways towards diversity and inclusion in botanical sciences.

Tonight, May 12th at 7PM, Dr. Georgia Silvera Seamans will share the story of Washington Square Park in NYC from its past interaction with Lenape peoples to Dr. Seaman's present-day biodiversity monitoring project on the land.

Dr. Georgia Silvera Seamans is Director and co-founder of Washington Square Park Eco Projects.
Conservation Corner
Learn about DC's state fish, the American Shad, with Captain Chris and friends from the Anacostia Watershed Society.

AWS has also compiled fun activities for kids from all grade levels to learn about the important role shad play in the Anacostia ecosystem.

The Arboretum is open every day from 8 AM - 5 PM except December 25th. Some buildings and collections remain closed to ensure visitor and staff safety.
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