The first Open Kitchen workshop focused on urban agriculture and the cultivation of vegetables in confined spaces. A group of 10 from Santa Maria la Ribera took part in the workshop, nurturing a wide variety of vegetables from sowing to harvest: germinating seeds, plowing soil, trimming and composting.

All work took place in the Casa Gallina garden, which gave participants the knowledge necessary for cultivation in their own spaces. The group visited a similar urban garden, “Alas”, to discuss their experiences and exchange knowledge.

Throughout 16 sessions lead by Mauricio Badillo, participants studied methods of cultivating a variety of species of edible plants–primarily greens and legumes. The workshop covered the essential differences between traditional and urban agriculture, methods of propagation and the characteristics of the main plant families, as well as the rotation and matching of plants, types of fertilization and plague control and prevention.

The group also studied the biological functions of plants and their medicinal benefits, the effects of industrialization on farming and the relevance of urban gardens for the regeneration of the environment in cities.

The participants applied what they had learned in two public scenarios: motivated by Environment Day, they created seed bombs which were distributed in plant pots, flower beds and other soil spaces within the Casa Gallina garden. They also cultivated, harvested and packaged plants with medicinal properties, which they distributed to neighbors during the radio broadcast of “Acciones para la regeneración de áreas verdes en Santa María la Ribera” (Action for the Regeneration of Green Areas in Santa Maria la Ribera).

The group shared the experience and knowledge they had gained with students from ballroom dance and yoga classes at the “Casa de Cultura de Santa Maria la Ribera” (Cultural House of Santa Maria la Ribera). During this activity, they shared organic tea made with plants from Casa Gallina’s garden and a booklet outlining their medicinal benefits entitled “Guía rápida para cultivo de hortalizas en casa” (Quick Guide to Growing Vegetables at Home).

Participants: Delia Alcaraz, Susana Vértiz, Alfredo de la Fuente. Fabiola Garzón, María del Carmen Muñoz, Verónica Robles, Marichu, María del Carmen Camacho.