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Vision

To transform the food culture at Duke and strengthen local food systems while providing duke community members with valuable skills and heightening environmental consciousness.

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Project Mission

We will create a garden that is:

  • Educational: experiential learning through connection with the land and hands on teaching
  • Sustainable: utilization of organic practices and life-cycle analysis
  • Inovative: knowledge creation through new irrigation, composting, and gardening practices
  • Collaborative: Engaging Trinity and Pratt, undergraduates, graduates and staff

Features

  • Food production: vegetable, fruit and berry harvests for volunteers and the Freeman Center
  • Layout: aesthetically captivating layout designed by landscape architect team to attract interest
  • Composting: separate worm and bin composting to demonstrate and test different technologies
  • Water collection: A 440 gallon concrete storage system for a sustainable water source
  • Irrigation: a low maintenance, water efficient drip irrigation system
  • Shed: A 96 square foot shed for tool storage and a water catchment surface

Project Outcomes - Incremental Gains and Marginal Benefits

Primary Objective: A Duke food culture that engages and appreciates the complete cycle of food production

  1. Education: Duke students gain gardening skills that they will use for the rest or their lives
  2. Education: Unmet academic interest in agriculture and horticulture is fulfilled
  3. Sustainable: Environmental impacts of food transport and conventional farming are diminished
  4. Sustainable: Underutilized resources like land and gardening skills will be employed
  5. Innovation: Group and individual projects on promising ideas drive knowledge creation
  6. Collaboration: Testing and teaching location for Duke groups implementing solutions abroad
  7. Collaboration: Duke Smart Home expanded to engage ecosystem and food sustainability
  8. Collaboration: Partnership with the Freeman Center to provide fresh food for Henry's Place
  9. Collaboration: Manuel work strengthens sense of community among diverse stakeholders

Project Deliverables by semester's end (05/01/09)

  • Water, composing, shed and layout construction is completed
  • A 3,500 square feet plot of land is planted, growing and maintained
  • All materials for the maintenance of the garden through the end of 2009 are procured
  • Sustainable arrangements for summer labor and future funding needs are arranged
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Project Funding Needs

$3,000-$11,500 (see budget documents)

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Key Stakeholders and Partners

Duke SmartHome, Duke Recycles, Students for Sustainable Living, Freeman Center, SEEDS, Engineers without Borders, Farm Hand, Divinity School, Duke Gardens, Duke Sustainability Office