This is part of the “Sunshine Garden” at PS 107 in Park Slope Brooklyn. It is an interesting story of how EarthBoxes became a part of this concrete jungle garden. PS 107 is much like the contest winning Rosa Parks Elementary school garden in San Francisco. Like so many city schools across the country, it’s all about cement.There was no intent originally to create the garden with EarthBoxes. It was originally designed for wood planter boxes. The school found the money for custom planter boxes and they were actually built. You can see one of them on the right.
As often happens in city schools, unexpected construction intervened. As happened at PS 102 in Bay Ridge, scaffolding needed to be erected, in this case for window replacement. This had a major impact on the “built-in” planter box garden. The solution was the acquisition of portable, productive EarthBox sub-irrigated planters (SIPs).
It now appears that this was a blessing in disguise. It is no surprise that the parents and teachers who are involved with the Sunshine Garden discovered the extraordinary benefits of the EarthBoxes. You can now read about the garden on Facebook, both on the EarthBox account and that of garden co-chair Michelle Israel.
There may be more to come in this story. Using the corrugated drain pipe method the top watered custom planter boxes could easily be converted to sub-irrigated planter (SIPs). I would recommend the same method used for the Cabbage Patch Garden planters. SIP inserts provide the ultimate in flexibility and portability. It is exactly the way it is done in the interior plantscaping industry where I discovered the benefits of SIPs back in the ‘70s. I would gladly lend my help to accomplish this conversion.
Conversion of the planter boxes would dramatically increase the productivity of the garden. The sub-irrigated wooden box planters would match the productivity of the EarthBoxes while saving water and time.
With conversion of the planter boxes and removal of the scaffolding, PS 107 could become a showcase demonstration garden for all schools in New York City and elsewhere.
Many schools with concrete and blacktop surfaces are currently stymied by the high cost of creating a school garden. As the Sunshine Garden proves, there is no need to break up paved areas simply to dig in the dirt that may well be contaminated. It is an unnecessary waste of money.