Lower 9th Ward Neighbors harvest watermelon, rosemary, and mint at the CSED Dauphine Community Garden at 4819 Dauphine Street. Stop by often to gather whatever is growing or contact Kathy Muse, CSED Program Coordinator, for more information at 504-939-9028. This garden is a blight beautification project of the Lower 9th Ward CSED.
42 posts categorized "Food Security"
We have unfortunately lost one of our grapefruit trees in our Dauphine Street Commuity Orchard to citrus canker disease. This has been confirmed by Dr. Raghuwinder Singh of the LSU Ag Center. He advises that "the only way to manage citrus canker is to remove the symptomatic tree entirely. Double bag the tree in black sturdy trash bags and then dispose of it in a landfill or let the garbage hauler take it. Surface sterilize the tools that you use to cut the tree with 20% bleach solution. Also remember to wash your hands with warm water and soap. Do not touch or visit another citrus tree within 72 hours after you remove the tree." If one of your trees shows signs of citrus canker disease, please notify Dr. Singh by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org the location and photos of the diseased tree. He is tracking the spread of this disease.
Our tree appeared healthy and vigorous with new growth sprouting all around but the bottom leaves had lesions with yellow halos. Citrus canker is a highly contagious disease and all varieties of citrus are susceptible. Help stop the spread of this disease by being informed and taking immediate action.
New and returning volunteers from Marquette University http://www.marquettemardigras.com/ in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, gave new life to the CSED Dauphine Street Community Garden. They totally reworked the streetside planting bed! These energetic students weeded, and weeded, and weeded some more, put down landscape fabric under the streetside border, mixed in compost with the existing soil, planted liriope and loropetalum, and mulched with pine straw while they gladly soaked up some glorious, New Orleans sunshine.
They tirelessly continued to work all day. Thanks to them the rest of the garden beds were also weeded and mulched, the brick entrance walkway was raised with another layer of bricks, and recycled, concrete pavers were added at the end of the streetside bed for further protection from vehicles.
Hailing from the great state of New York, new & returning volunteers from Webster, Ogden & Greece Baptist Churches worked tirelessly in our neighborhood this week. I was fortunate to have the assistance and youthful energy of Brett Forstbauer, Taylor Riggins, & Michael Soluri. They worked with our constant, quinntessential volunteer Steve Gonzales to continue our effort to clear & level the blighted backyard of the property next to our Dauphine Street community orchard. These guys dug deep to eliminate roots, remove debris, & rake & level the ground to help us achieve easy maintenance.
Thanks to these young men, we also now have another community orchard planted on our Florida Avenue properties. They diligently dug holes, mixed soil, planted, watered, & mulched nine fruit trees...2 ruby red grapefruit, 1 sweet kumquat, 2 sweet orange, 1 Satsuma, 2 figs, & 1 apple.
We would like to give a shout out to Ecologist Colleen Butler who generously offered to volunteer her services to computerize our landscape design plan for the CSED lots at Florida and Caffin Avenues. The Florida Avenue lot will be planted with red maple, pecan, and cypress trees. The naturalized "island" blooming with goldenrod that currently exists in the rear of this lot will be enhanced with additional plants to further attract butterflies. A community fruit orchard will be planted on the Lamanche Street properties. A perimeter fence of recycled 4x4 posts strung with rope has already been installed.
As per our request, Colleen designed a temporary seating structure for the Caffin Avenue lot to stage groups of visitors who often come to learn more about the Bayou Bienvenue Triangle. She included an attached rain catchment system to provide a water source for the site.
Colleen, we so appreciate your time and effort!
Boundless energy and amazing initiative would begin to describe the students of the Jewish Center in Princeton, New Jersey, who volunteered with us in our community garden and orchard at 4817-19 Dauphine Steet. We constantly battle the overgrowth from the adjacent blighted property but these folks made short order of removing at least a foot of weeds, sand and debris from the alleyway. They cleared the fence line as requested and then took the initiative to go above and beyond and chopped down the entire "jungle" that overshadowed the orchard! But they didn't stop there...100 daffodil bulbs were planted in hopes of a magnificent Spring bloom.
By Tina Dirmann
This is a story of rebirth, renewal, regrowth. Just a snapshot of what a few determined individuals can do when they are committed to making a difference.
How fitting, as we note the 8th anniversary of Katrina, that we can tell such a tale today. For it was eight years ago when waters ravaged New Orleans. And, in particular, devastated the tight-knit community that made up the Lower Ninth Ward.
In the days before Katrina hit, there stood an empty lot – that kind that proliferates the still devastated community today. But before the storm, this lot in particular meant something to people. You see, one resident used to take the time to toss seeds into this lot. At times, tomato seeds. Sometimes okra. A little of this and some of that. Nothing formal. No one tended to the yard in any particular way. And yet, produce often grew large and proud. And what cropped-up was there for the taking. Anyone in the community was welcome to it.
That tradition was almost lost in the storm’s wake, just another casualty amid so much other loss. We know some residents never returned. Weeds still stand overgrown on vacant lots. Community stores and bars and gathering spots simply fell away.
But in 2009, one woman in this shaken community remembered that garden, and she wanted it back. Because in her neighborhood, fresh produce can be hard to come by. There aren’t thriving farmers markets. No Whole Foods and Rouses offering fresh fare – let alone anything affordable.
And so, 9th Ward resident Jenga Mwendo founded the Backyard Gardener’s Network, a non-profit dedicated to reviving and sustaining the lot they’ve now dubbed “The Guerrilla Garden.” Her group gathered enough funds to buy the lot at 601 Charbonnet Street and not just return it to what it once was – but to take it a step beyond. READ MORE >>
The Lower 9th Ward Center for Sustainable Engagement & Development (CSED) has purchased the vacant lots at 2639 Caffin Avenue, 5620 Florida Avenue, 2636 and 2640 Lamanche Street from the New Orleans Redevelopment Authority (NORA).
The purchase of these properties will support and enhance our ongoing effort with partners to restore the Bayou Bienvenue Triangle into a healthly wetland which can once again serve as a natural surge barrier and a recreational haven for our community. In 2007, we helped to build the Bayou Bienvenue Platform located directly across Florida Avenue from these lots. The CSED acts as the caretaker of the platform site, provides tours by a Lower 9th Ward native bayou guide, and engages in community outreach and environmental education. Use of these properties will further enhance our mission to reconnect Lower 9th Ward residents with the Bayou Bienvenue Triangle & the waters that surround them.
Current CSED plans for these lots include regular maintenance, soil sampling, fencing, tree plantings, and the development of a community orchard. We are honored to be able to give new life and purpose to these former homesites of displaced Lower 9th Ward residents.
With hard work, funding from Blue Moon, help from Historic Green, help from LA Green Corps, help from LSU Landscape Architecture Students, and countless volunteers, the CSED is close to completing its Dreams Of An Orchard Project at 4817/19 Dauphine Street. Task remaining; installation of landscape fabric, completion of fence, completion of permanent rain catchment, completion of brick pathways, additional plantings and DIY Handbook.