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The Open Garden at OSS#02

Date: August 1 – September 30, 2016
Facilitators: Juanli Carrión, visual artist + Brooklyn Urban Garden (BUG) Gardener.
Place: OSS#02 garden. Fort Greene Park northeast corner (Myrtle Av & Washington Park)
Duration: 2 Hours
Cost: Free
Participants: During the summer of 2016, four sessions for The Open Garden workshop series were conducted working with: Mapple St School, Farragut Houses Gardeners, Myrtle Av BID & a Public Workshop.


The Open Garden workshops are OSS#02’ flagship program to engage directly with the community. This program establishes partnerships with local organizations and institutions, to use the garden as a living classroom, laboratory and case study. In each specific case we design and scheduled a workshop tailored to the interests, ages, background and needs of each partner, to take place once a week between August 1st and September 30th.

The “Open Garden” workshops are hosted by the artist Juanli Carrión and one gardener from the Brooklyn Botanical Garden’s program BUG, which will provide gardening classes.

OSS#02 is a community garden built with plants from all over the world. The survival of these plants in the garden through the five months of duration of the installation relies on the community. Each plant in the garden needs very specific care coming from such diverse places of origin, like the people who selected them. We will have palm trees growing next to tomatoes, or willow trees growing next to avocados—a great botanical and horticultural challenge that works here as a metaphor of the reality of the people who selected the plants.

Many of our partners (public schools, high schools, colleges course, other community gardens, neighborhood associations, etc) are bringing different groups of students, artists and members of their communities or programs to take part in the workshops.

In each workshop a group of 5-10 people meets at the garden to participate in the workshop with the following structure:

An introduction to the garden/installation carried by the artist to put them in perspective with the project as a whole. (30 min).
A gardening workshop with the assistance of the gardener in which the group will “get down in the dirt” and tend to the plants that require care. Learning about origin of plants, specific facts about their care and interaction with the weather, soil, water and other plants. (1 hour)
A round table where we will discuss the day’s experience and how it reflects on immigration, social interaction and cultural values, including a short questionnaire/survey. (30 min)