Happy Birthday To Us!

May 13, 2015
Posted in GrowNYC

GrowNYC, the city's essential environmental resource, is celebrating 45 years of service with a birthday party at our most iconic project - the Union Square Greenmarket - one of 50 Greenmarkets we operate.

Why should you care?

Free cake and cool t-shirts!  Check out our new limited edition t-shirts featuring a throwback design by Robin Willis. This t-shirt could be yours for only $20 bucks at our 45th birthday part in Union Square Greenmarket on Monday, May 18 at Union Square Greenmarket! OR if you donate $100 or more today.

Big thanks to Robin Willis for his fab design. Check out more of his work here.

The Season Begins at Governors Island Teaching Garden

April 27, 2015
Posted in Community Gardens

A new season of garden-based programming for public school students has begun on GrowNYC’s Governors Island Teaching Garden.  From April to November, we'll teach thousands of kids about where their food comes from and how to cook simple and nutritious recipes using garden-grown produce.

Among our newest additions to the garden is a solar cooker, made by our friends at GoSol, a Finnish social enterprise devoted to spreading the knowledge of how to build low-tech, high power solar concentrators. 

GoSol is currently crowdfunding to publish free construction guides, launch projects and create an online hub where people around the world can participate in the open development of these sustainable energy technologies. Read more about their great work at www.gosol.org/FreeTheSun.

Last week in the garden, we had a spectacularly clear day and were able to use the solar cooker with a group of high school students. We chopped green beans and mixed them with oil and spices in a frying pan. We then placed the pan on the solar cooker and asked two students to help use the cooker’s lever to move its giant wall of mirrors into place.  

Within a few seconds of aligning the mirrors, enough light from the sun was reflected to the cook surface to cause the beans to start to sizzle!

Wholesale Greenmarket Opens for 2015

April 23, 2015
Posted in Greenmarket

The Wholesale Greenmarket is now open for the 2015 season! Buy fresh, affordably-priced plants, flowers, and produce direct from farmers from New York State and New Jersey.

The market is open from Tuesday to Saturday, 2am-8am: the early morning hours are tailored to buyers such as food retailers and restaurants, but the Wholesale Greenmarket is open to the public. Whether you are a business owner or a home gardener, a community organization or just cooking for a big family, join us bright and early for great deals on produce and plants in wholesale quantities.

290 Halleck Street (at Viele Ave)
Open Tuesday through Saturday
April 4 – Dec 31, 2015
2 AM to 8 AM

Please note that mainly plants are sold from April-June, with produce starting in July. Please see the Wholesale Greenmarket page for individual farmer contact information.

Watch GrowNYC Executive Director Marcel Van Ooyen's TEDx Talk

March 30, 2015
Posted in Greenmarket

Watch GrowNYC's Executive Director Marcel Van Ooyen take to the stage to deliver a TEDx talk about scaling up local food distribution through Greenmarket Co., New York City's first and only food hub dedicated to supporting regional food producers by making their products available to wholesale buyers throughout the city.


GrowNYC's garden program profiled on BBC Radio

January 5, 2015
Posted in Community Gardens

GrowNYC's Marcel Van Ooyen, Lenny Librizzi, and Shawn Brody were interviewed by BBC Radio's Food Programme. As part of a larger audio piece, GrowNYC contributed comments on the role that a urban agriculture and community gardens play in promoting healthy eating in NYC.  

Listen to the piece on BBC Radio.

Governors Island Teaching Garden: A Year in Review

December 8, 2014

During our inaugural season, GrowNYC's Governors Island Teaching Garden, a dedicated multi-use learning and demonstration garden space within Governors Island Urban Farm, hosted 16 weeks of garden-based educational programming and skill-building workshops for 4500 school children, school and community gardeners, summer camps, and members of the public.

During the Fall 2014 school semester, the Teaching Garden provided 500 NYC public school students (K-12) the opportunity to dig in and connect to nature through urban agriculture, environmental education, and nutritional learning, by growing, harvesting, cooking, and eating farm-fresh produce. Students engaged in in-depth discussions of plant care, ecosystems, food justice, and healthy living.

Students also had the opportunity to make a healthy snack or beverage on the bicycle blender! Along with a range of public schools from all five boroughs, we had the honor of providing programming to some very special groups such as Lighthouse Guild, Administration for Children’s Services (ACS), and Rush Philanthropic. We also had the privilege of having GrowNYC’s own Mike Zamm come out one day to work with High School students making solar ovens.

In addition to hosting visiting school age students, the Teaching Garden was also open to the public during summer weekends. During these weekend open hours, 3,600 public visitors were able to take a self-guided tour of the space, drop-in on scheduled structured gardening activities, or taste produce from the garden during cooking demos. These activities included garden maintenance, (weeding, mulching, planting), harvesting, tours, and other hands-on arts activities.

On selected weekends during the summer, the Teaching Garden also hosted specific workshops and activities, include ones on animal care, making herbal teas, building trellising for peas, and vertical pallet garden construction. Weekend visitors were also able to see demonstrations of many of the garden and greening infrastructure elements that GrowNYC has built in the past three decades throughout the city. These included raised plastic lumber frame beds for edibles, ornamentals, and themed gardens; windrows for urban agricultural production; a shade structure; a rainwater harvesting system; a garden shed; mulched paths; easy to construct benches; fruit trees; season extending high- and low-tunnels; cold-frames; composting bins; recycling bins; a rain garden; stoop railing planters; and examples of enhanced tree pits for homes, gardens, and communities.

In total, the Teaching Garden produced a bounty of fruits, vegetables, and herbs -- much of it grown by children – totaling over 800 pounds. Most of this produce was harvested, cooked, and consumed by visiting school groups as part of Teaching Garden’s educational programming. Leftover produce was donated to city food pantries.







#GivingTuesday is almost here!

November 26, 2014

#GivingTuesday is back and we're proud to be a part of it for the second year in a row.

Coming after Black Friday and Cyber Monday, #GivingTuesday acknowledges that we don't just take, take, take. We give back too! This year, on Tuesday, December 2nd, be a part of this growing global movement by taking action in a way that is meaningful to you. #GivingTuesday is about doing what you can to give back. It's about showing that all of us can do so much more with our wallets than just consume.

This year we have an extra special treat: the first $5,000 that we raise on #GivingTuesday will be matched dollar-for-dollar!

The #GivingTuesday campaign is a platform for you to contribute to your community and to help make this the biggest giving season yet. Your donation to GrowNYC helps give schools the tools they need to get learning outside, brings NYC's youngest to experience the outdoors through field trips to different urban farms, offers community leaders the tools they need to keep growing, helps New Yorkers recycle smarter, and supports new farmers and Greenmarket producers.

All of us here at GrowNYC know that you care about making a difference, and that's why we invite you to join #GivingTuesday. Donate, spread the word, volunteer for groups you care about (we hope that includes GrowNYC!) and encourage your friends to to give in lieu of gifts or just because.

Mark your calendar for December 2 and take action in ways that mean something to you.

Together, #letsgrownyc!
To learn more go to www.givingtuesday.org
Be sure to follow us on twitter @GrowNYC and use #letsgrownyc. We'll be sure to retweet you!

Here are some sample tweets to get you started on spreading the word:

  • Be a part of a new worldwide tradition of giving. On #GivingTuesday, #letsgrownyc.
  • Black Friday. Cyber Monday. What about #GivingTuesday? Together, #letsgrownyc!
  • Remember, it's not how you give or what you give, it's THAT you give. For the second year, #letsgrownyc on #GivingTuesday! 

Happy Giving!

The Greenmarket Experience at the Hyatt Union Square

November 26, 2014
Posted in Greenmarket

GrowNYC recently released The New Greenmarket Cookbook by Gabrielle Langholtz, a collection of one hundred seasonal recipes from today’s top chefs and culinary minds. In light of this exciting occasion, Hyatt Union Square New York is celebrating its neighbor with The Greenmarket Experience. Guests who book this experience package will receive a robust sampling of, and introduction to, what this beloved green oasis in the heart of Manhattan has to offer.

Guests will receive:

  • A Greenmarket Wheat Beer from Brooklyn Brewery, which is grown from 70% New York State-grown wheat and barley
  • A $20 shopping credit to use at the Greenmarket throughout their stay,
  • A Hyatt Union Square New York canvas bag to tote their loot, and
  • A guide featuring interesting background on GrowNYC and its vendors.
  • The New Greenmarket Cookbook.

This package has been carefully curated to demonstrate the hotel's alignment with the GrowNYC initiatives, which include supporting family farms, farmers, markets, gardens, recycling, and education.

A Greenmarket at the Crossroads of the World

October 15, 2014
Posted in Greenmarket

You’ve always come to Times Square for the lights, entertainment, and energy – but now you can come for fresh, local New York State products too!

GrowNYC, Times Square Alliance, and Taste NY are coming together to present the Times Square Greenmarket: Farm to TSq on Thursdays from 10/16 to 11/6 from 8am to 5pm on Broadway between 42nd and 43rd Streets.

Complete with fresh fruits, yogurt drinks, jams, honey, maple syrup and baked goods all grown and produced in New York State, the all-day Times Square Greenmarket will give patrons a chance to eat seasonally inspired dishes sold by neighborhood restaurants and sip on beer, wine and hard cider while jamming to live music.  Food, music and family activities will make the Times Square Greenmarket a great event for New Yorkers of all ages. Cooking demonstrations will be presented by Havana Central and The Lambs Club among others, each Thursday from 11:00 AM until 1:00 PM.

View the full market flyer.

Times Square Greenmarket: Farm to TSq Schedule

Thursday, October 16
Location: Broadway between 42nd and 43rd Streets
Cooking Demonstration (11:00AM - 1:00PM) provided by: Havana Central at Times Square

Thursday, October 23
Location: Broadway between 42nd and 43rd Streets
Cooking Demonstration (11:00AM - 1:00PM) provided by: The Lambs Club at Times Square

Thursday, October 30
Location: TBD
Cooking Demonstration (11:00AM - 1:00PM) provided by:  TBD

Thursday, November 6
Location: Broadway between 42nd and 43rd Streets
Cooking Demonstration (11:00AM - 1:00PM) provided by: TBD

Night Markets are back this fall

October 8, 2014
Posted in Greenmarket

Fall Night Markets!

Union Square Mercato Notturno: Tasting Italian History 
Union Square Greenmarket - 17th Street btw Park & Broadway (north plaza) 
Friday, October 10th

Participating Mercato Notturno Restaurants:
Pizza Moto 
The Pavilion 
Ends Meat


Union Square Cider Week Night Market
Union Square Greenmarket - 17th Street btw Park & Broadway (north plaza) 
Friday, October 24th

Participating Cider Week Night Market Restaurants:
Northern Spy
The Pavilion
Queens Kickshaw
Taco Santo

These events are free and open to the public and hosted in collaboration with the Union Square Partnership.

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