After The Bell: An inner-city garden

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by CHRIS FLANAGAN / WFAA-TV

wfaa.com

Posted on February 1, 2010 at 7:13 PM

DALLAS — Children in one Dallas neighborhood are getting down and dirty with their "garden of dreams,"  a patch of paradise that has turned out to be a labor of love.

Ladaysha Robinson and her friends are growing radishes, lettuce and turnips in the shadows of skyscrapers.

"It's hard planting a garden," Ladaysha explained. "You have to water them some days, and you have to put mulch around them, keep them covered when it's winter."

Ladaysha and her friends don't have to go far to garden. It's in their apartment complex at the Roseland Townhomes. 

The Gardener Apprentice program, which is run by Central Dallas Ministries' After School Academy, offers the children a chance to learn about fruits and vegetables and to also learn about what it takes to grow them. 

"It's a great way to feel like they've done something, to have some success in the growing and learning process," said volunteer Susie Marshall.

The Gardener Apprentice program hopes to encourage the kids to try new foods and get them more excited about fresh fruits and veggies, which may not always be easy to find. 

"We decided to do the garden because we noticed a lot of the stores, especially in South Dallas, don't have the produce and the vegetables that are high quality and fresh," said Janet Morrison of Central Dallas Ministries.

Ladaysha and her friends are hoping to soon cash in on the fruits of their labor by selling some of the produce at a local farmer's market.

E-mail cflanagan@wfaa.com

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