Project Sweetie Pie at the Fair tomorrow Aug 30th

Come join Project Sweetie Pie in the EcoEducation Building from 8am-8pm as we help people learn about urban agriculture.

Sweetie Pie featured in Southwest Journal

Mosaic gardenProject Sweetie Pie Garden Troubadours were spotted doing good at Kingfield Park as they installed Mosaic gardens. These gardens have galvanized CultureCafes, designed to bring social justice and urban food issues to the minds of neighbors and friends. We can all do something about these issues as we create a peaceful and powerful world. . . more here


Spokesman Fete’s Project Sweetie Pie as Teens Get Fresh Food by Stephanie Fox

Gardens to the Markets in North Minneapolis
Gardens to the Markets in North Minneapolis


“Teen Led, Teen Fed” quips Founder Michael Chaney at this year’s outstanding young garden troubadours support more than 20+ gardens all over north Minneapolis. . . more here



Minneapolis: Veggies Rule at Oak Park Food Charter from North News by Maddy  Wegner

This summer has changed lives
This summer has changed lives

Combining the Minnesota Food charter with the launch of the YouthCafe movement brought  food justice issues to the community in a very delicious way. A night of teen talent, food harvested from blocks away and prepared to perfection by Chef Eric Austin (Big E) helped North Minneapolis get on the state of Minnesota’s Food Charter map. . more here

Community Gardens in North Minneapolis!

A memo from Ed Brown At Oasis of Love Garden says:

HELLO — PSP !!!   EVERYBODY JOIN US at 2304 Emerson Ave North

AGAPE KIDS AND FAMILY GARDEN will host a tour (listed in Garden Day Directory) from 1:30-3:30 p.m. on Saturday.  We’ll have prizes for the best “top chef” garden fresh recipe and garden poster art contest.  People can share their garden stories during our open mike.  There’ll be garden tasting, music, and fun.
OASIS of Love, Inc.
2304 Emerson Avenue North
612/529-6055 or 612/287-9775
preferred email:
***************************************************************** says:
Remember there are tons of other gardens and fun activities on Saturday Aug 10th. Check out the website gardening for maps and lists.
A Memo from Chris Kosowski: North End Community Garden, with the Project Sweetie Pie plot, is having an open house celebration too!  Contact Anita Wallace ( for details.

Thanks, Chris Kosowski
It starts in a garden
Here is the Northside Community Garden as well!







Here are other gardens all over the city, many in north Minneapolis have been tended by the Project Sweetie Pie/AfroEco/EJAM STEP-UP students this summer:

AGAPE/OASIS Kids & Family Garden Project 2305 Emerson Ave N. Join us for food, art, music, open mic garden storytelling, and prizes for winners of the “top chef garden recipe contest!” 1:30-3:30pm.

Common Ground 52nd & Newton Ave N. Come see the native prairie area, winding shady path, herb garden, and raised vegetable beds. 11:00am-12:30pm. More info: 763-561-1616

Emerson Place Garden 25th Ave N & Emerson Ave N Homemade lemonade, garden tours, and newly installed bee hives! 4-6pm 

Hawthorne EcoVillage Community Garden 3100 Lyndale Ave N. Stop in for a snack, garden tour, and more info about our energy efficiency, fore-closure/crime prevention, and other community-based initiatives! 3:00-5:00pm. Facebook- HawthorneEcovillageCommunityGarden

JD Rivers Children’s Garden 2900 Glenwood Ave. Youth will prepare gar-den snacks, provide tours of the garden, and lead scavenger hunts in the garden for kids. 11:30am-1:30pm. More info: 612 499-9248

Kwanzaa Church Community Garden & EJAM 2100 Emerson Ave. N. Fun, kid-friendly event will include demonstration of compressed earth blocks as a construction form! 10am-Noon

North End Community Garden Lowry and Penn Ave N. Snacks, art pro-jects, and garden tours! 12:00-2:00pm. More info: 612-716-1453

The Olive Garden 1422 Oliver Ave N Celebration of “Gardens Galore” in N Mpls with Project Sweetie Pie & Afro Eco. Music, speakers, kids activities, & more! Sisters Camelot will bring their bus and distribute vegetables  2-4pm or

Project Superman Neighborhood Garden 2028 Sheridan Ave N. & Garden of Eating Diabetic Garden 3001 James Ave N. Food, music, games, & more! 12:00-2:30pm. More info: or 612-600-3744

St. Olaf Community Campus Farm 2901 Emerson Ave N. Harvest feast featuring youth-grown veggies, youth-led garden tours, bouncy castle, face painting, garden games, and more! 2:00-4:00pm.

Washington Community Garden 3346 Washington Ave N Light snacks, tour led by Hmong gardeners, educational opportunities, and support Go Motor shop. 10:30am-1:30pm More info: 612-721-0122 or

WE WIN Institute 621 Elwood Ave N. African drumming & dance, food, kids activities, & garden tour! 11:00am-1:00pm. More info: 612-721-2364


Fresh Food On 4th 4000 4th Ave S. Collard Green Cook-Off and tasting, a gardening skill share, and many more gardening activities for adults and youth. 12:00pm-2:00pm. More info: 612-280-7072

Jardin Paraiso/Paradise Garden 3405 Chicago Ave. Demos and recipes for purslane, or verdolagas, the edible plant considered a “weed” here. 10am-noon. More info:

Southside Star Community Garden 4100 South 32nd Ave Join us for sto-rytime with Roosevelt Library from 5-5:30pm. The rest of the evening will be filled with food, discussion, kids activities, and tours. 4:00-8:00pm. More info: 612-968-4777

Windom Community Garden 62nd St & Nicollet Ave Potluck picnic, lemon-ade & cookies provided. Face painting, scavenger hunt, crafts, & musical jam—bring your instruments! 4:30-6:30pm. More info: 612-423-7554


Alley Cat Community Garden 3606 . Van Buren St NE Mingle with some gardeners and enjoy acoustic music, face painting, and an art project for kids. Please park on Columbia Pkwy, and walk down alley between Van Buren and Architect. 1:30-3:00pm. More info: 612-703-2102

Fairshare Farm and Como Corner 1000 22nd Ave SE Como Corner Commotion Block Party: Local vendors, artists, musicians, food, and presentations by Como Corner and FairShare Farm gardeners. 12-6pm.

Foundry Community Garden 349 13th Ave NE Join us for music and a tour of gardens and surrounding businesses. 12:00-4:00pm. More info: 608-628-5432

NE United Methodist Community Garden 2510 Cleveland St NE. Demo for garden markers, recycled garden art projects, and tours led by gardeners! 2:00-5:00pm. More info: 612-789-7462

Prospect Park Community Gardens- Yale 1401 Yale Ave SE Snacks from the onsite brick oven using fresh garden ingredients served from noon-3pm. 10am-3pm.

Waite Park Community Garden 3601 Lincoln St NE. Take an evening stroll through the garden and sample some garden produce! 6:30-8:30pm. or find on Facebook



To Market To Market

You might have seen some of our photos on Facebook. We have thousands of them.

Now that the STEP-UP kids are in their last week, we are hoping to have them finish their stories and will post them for you. But here are a few photos with your morning coffee:

TC Daily Planet “Project Sweetie Pie Teens Get Fresh (food)

The TC Daily Planet features Project Sweetie Pie in a new article!

By Stephanie FoxGlobal Groceries

July 28, 2013
  •  ciara_jones_weed_the_garden_despite_a_gardening_injury_an_hurt_ankle.jpg

    Ciara Jones weeds the garden despite a gardening injury: a hurt ankle.

  • It began in 2010, with sweet potato pies and a new idea. The new idea was to create sustainable agriculture in the heart of the city, letting kids learn to grow vegetables and then (the new part) to show them how to sell what they grew to local businesses.
  • Project Sweetie Pie is the brainchild of community organizer Michael Chaney and Rose McGee, the owner of Deep Roots Gourmet Desserts. Their idea was to train high school students in North Minneapolis to plant, maintain, and harvest food from gardens as a commercial enterprise.

“We started with five gardens in 2011.” said Chaney. “This year we have 20. We’re trying to replicate the whole food system and get young people involved.” The gardens, he said, offer kids an opportunity to learn skills that may lead to future jobs and to give them something to do that might keep them out of trouble. He also hopes that it can help pull North Minneapolis out of poverty.

“We can’t get a big company to come to North Minneapolis,” he said. “But what we can do is get empty lots and turn them into food production. This is getting the community involved in the free market system. There are 1,800 empty lots in North Minneapolis, some because of the tornado.”

But, he insists, some of the empty lots could be used to grow food and to train kids in urban agriculture. “Instead of urban blight, we could have luxurious gardens,” he said.

Want to read the whole article? Click below:


Also Read Project Sweetie Pie launched in North Minneapolis (Margo Ashmore, 2011) and Project Sweetie Pie takes youth from seeds to market (Paris Porter, 2011)

Celebrating Youth Who Made North Mpls Clean and Green

Make your reservation to this Celebration featuring a local dinner by Chef Eric Austin

On Wednesday, August 14th at Oak Park Neighborhood Center located at 1701 Oak Park Ave N. we will be recognizing youth in north Minneapolis who have been working in north Minneapolis to make it cleaner and greener. If you know any youth or have been working with youth in gardens and feel that they should be honored please send their name/names to Devon Nolen/Northside Fresh at jdlovey@



Fourth of July Celebrations

Freedom Food Radio

Saturday June 29th AM950 TalkShow Hosts Karen Olsen-Johnson and Laura Hedland were joined by Michael Chaney, founder of Project Sweetie Pie, Nardal Stroud, Board Chair of NRRC and founder of the Plymouth Green Team, Peg Thomas and Kirk Washington with Project Sweetie Pie to talk about how North Minneapolis is “Going Green” with scattered gardens cultivated by our young leaders.

Listen to the June 29th podcast here:

North High Food Gardens

North High vegetable gardens by PSPPSP Youth Return to North High: STEP-UP students take pride in their high schools as together they weed, cultivate and plant flower and food beds. Students learned the value of having both–honeybees must be attracted to properly polinate the vegetables. Most of the gardens are now planted–and watering and weeding has begun in earnest.

for garden updates


Gardening Matters Visits the Olive Garden

Gardening Matters Staff Visit the Olive Garden at 1420 Oliver N: Gardening Matters runs hubs where community residents get seedlings and supplies. The Local Food Resource Hubs Network supports residents as they grow their own fresh produce, and who support each other through the growing season.  By joining, you’ll also have access to free or low-cost classes, tools, volunteer opportunities and social events.  More information is available at:


8th and Humboldt Gets Water

Water!!!: Permits paid, students watched as water was made available to the garden at 8th and Humboldt. With water comes the ability to keep the plants thriving. This is the garden were Gleaning Gardens and community residents were able to harvest collard and mustard greens.

Students this summer are getting first hand experience about how our Mpls infrastructure can help support our gardens and help North Minneapolis “goin’ green”.


Garden Gleaning, Project Sweetie Pie and Seed Academy work together.

Nan Zosel from Garden Gleaning got one of the first harvests from Project Sweetie Pie:  Stopping by the garden at 8th and Humboldt was a great opportunity as seeds planted by students at Seed Academy, and cultivated during the summer were then harvested and provided to the Garden Gleaning Project where they will be distributed to FoodShelves. Mustard and collard greens will be greatly appreciated by food shelve recipients. Thanks to the Garden Gleaning Project for their partnership.


CDC Visits Project Sweetie Pie

In town for a site visit from the CDC for a successful Asian Media Access project, staff members Apeksha Iyer and colleague visit the Olive Garden: The goal of the CDC’s Community Transformation Grants are to promote healthy equity and the elimination of racial and ethnic health disparities. Project Sweetie Pie demonstrated that by helping youth become urban agricultural leaders, they would be seeding our community for change. The representatives were thrilled with what they saw and invited PSP to submit a grant.


More info as soon as it comes!  Or visit

Urban Gardens in North Minneapolis Step-Up!

The Step-up kids have arrived! Now that summer has come students have been assigned to Project Sweetie Pie, Afro Eco, EJAM, Plymouth Green Team, Appetite for Change and a host of other programs. And, they are working on the gardens. The goal is to create a super-structure. We know that community gardens are fun during planting and harvesting but not as much fun in the hot sun. These young people will be going around to about 30 different gardens to be sure that they are weeded, watered and vibrant. Along the way, they will be learning how to design, plant, and maintain gardens, sell produce, figure out the cost of gardening, and learning about techniques. We will send you a link to their blog.

Here is our wish-list:

  • Adults to help with the gardening and drive kids between 10-3. Contact if you want to volunteer for a day or a week! These are great kids
  • Water bottles
  • Gas cards so some of the seniors can come and help
  • Transportation so that we can get 20+ kids around to the gardens
  • Donations or leads to funds–hauling kids around to the gardens takes a lot of gas



Wells Fargo Volunteers to the Rescue!

Volunteers from Wells Fargo joined with the Minnesota Arboretum and Growing for Good Minnesota on June 8, 2013 to put pop-up gardens all over North and South Minneapolis. We caught up to these dynamic teams at 4000 S 4th Street in So. Minneapolis as they descended upon and then left to seed more gardens:



June is Bustin’ Out All Over!

Opportunities to go Dig in the Dirt (Finally!) Been inside under a blanket? We hear you. It’s been cold. But enough.

Here is how you can join with your happy neighbors:First we want to give a big shout out to Jennie Hotz of the Green Earth Growers  at 612 205 1034,  7150 Casey Parkway Prior Lake MN 55372.  Green Earth Growers of Prior Lake donated dozens of flats of  tomatoes, flowers, peppers, and lettuce which need to be planted tomorrow. They will be donating more for planting on Sunday.

Please know are always welcome to show up and dig in the dirt at the garden sites listed at

Urban gardening opportunities this weekend include:

1 Plymouth Green Team: At 12:00 Noon at Humboldt and Plymouth behind the Legacy Townhouses. Nardal Stroud is out of town so Michael Chaney will lead this brigade. We will meet to till, plant and weed. Contact Michael Chaney at 612 534-6403–remember–he has one of the only pagers left in this century. When you hear the tone, put in your phone number and he will get back to you.

2. South Minneapolis 4000 4th Ave S at 11:00:  More than 40 volunteers from Wells Fargo, 15 youth from the Arboretum and others are meeting to put in raised beds at 8 gardens–mostly in South Minneapolis at  the “Church of God” garden near St. Joan of Arc, Church of God and St. Paul AME.Raised Urban Garden Beds at 3648 Fremont Ave S All churches are coming together for this garden. The garden site manager is Bill Greene at 612 803 4230 These volunteers and students are being organized by LaDonna Redman and she is waiting for the garden “map” that will tell her when the volunteers are going to be at which site. Volunteers will start at another site at 9:30 am, will be here and then will move on to other gardens this weekend. Thank you volunteers! This group helped with 10 sites last Saturday–they will be working on 8 sites. Here is a photo of their work at 3648 Fremont Ave N. If you can’t find this group, call Michael Chaney on his pager at 612 534-6403.

3. The garden at 8th and Humboldt is coming along nicely thanks to the efforts of the Seed Academy students. They cut stakes for tomatoes, planted sunflowers in class and have been out to the garden planting peppers, beans and lettuce. The garden is about 1/2 planted, so volunteers will be needed for a few weeks. If you show and no one is there, you can simply start or call Michael Chaney on his pager at 612-534-6403.

4. The garden at 1422 Oliver should be seeing some activity between 8:00am-12:00pm tomorrow morning with Ezra Jackman, Robert Chaney and some of the last year’s youth troubadours all pitching in. Send us your photos!

 5. If you can’t get out this weekend, put Tuesday night on your calendar Folks at the Camden Gardens at 3648 Fremont and 3653 Emerson Ave N are expecting a load of seedlings that need to go in–they probably won’t all get planted this weekend.

 6. If you want to see a super garden drive by the 2030 Sheriden Ave N garden and let Jim Desnick know how impressed you are.

More news tomorrow morning at 4:00am.  (People were waiting till the last minute to make plans, but it looks like we might finally have a great weekend!)

Send questions and comments to

Camden Gardens Get a Conservation Corps Jump

First we thank the Conservation Corps who show-up and got the job done–a beautiful mural for the garden on 3648 Fremont. After a lunch break, they started breaking up the soil in the garden. Later another team will be putting in raised beds for the vegetable gardens. We would like to thank all of these marvelous students for their vision and their work.

This season has given us an opportunity to start using seedlings. Here are photos of the seedlings ready to plant and the lot where they will eventually live. We invite you to come join the Camden Garden Brigade as we seed the community for change.



If anyone would like to come out and do some planting or put some raised beds together that would be AWESOME!!!!! Please let Lisa Dunlap know via email or 651-230-2593 (cell). Please reach out to your networks as well. Getting these vegetables started seems to be impossible, but we will succeed. Stick with us–we have gardens all over town. Check for sites. All volunteers are welcomed. Come dig in the dirt!