Get connected with your roots…on Earth Day!

Celebrating Earth Day
by Brooklyn Johnson


This month, on April 22, 2018, citizens across around the world will celebrate Earth Day. Some activists use Earth Day as a call to action for environmental policy reform. However, you don’t have to march on Capitol Hill to make an impact. Small changes in your life can lead to a healthy happier future for you and your community. We may live in Hollywood, the birthplace of entertainment, and the second most populated city in the US, but nature still deserves a space in our lives. Below are some suggestions for fun activities to do this Earth Day. 

Whatever you decide to do, Eco Urban Gardens would like to wish everyone a Happy Earth Day!

1. Attend an Earth Day Celebration.

There are dozens of free events happening in the LA area. Here are a few:

  • Community Succulent and Fruit Exchange. Bring cuttings of succulents and fruit trees to exchange with fellow plant enthusiasts. Sunday April 22 11am-3pm 1126 Fairview Ave, South Pasadena, CA 91030
  • The Music Center and LADWP at Grand Park to celebrate Earth Day L.A. Features performances, tours, plant giveaways and demonstrations of the latest in green technology. April 19, 2018 from 9am to 2pm. 200 N Grand Ave, LA, CA 90012
  • LA Sanitation for it’s third annual citywide Earth Day LA event at Highland Park. There will be City vehicles for kids to explore, games to play, prizes to win, seeds to plant, and 50+ exhibitors to visit. Saturday, April 21 from 10am to 2pm. 6150 Piedmont Ave, LA, CA 90042
  • Arroyo High School Community Garden work day with Eco Urban Gardens! Saturday, April 21 from 9am-12pm 4921 Cedar Ave, El Monte, CA 91732. Email echristy@ecourbangardens.org for more details. 
  • STAR Eco Station for their 18th annual Children’s Earth Day. Eco friendly games, rides, exotic wildlife encounters, and outdoors extravaganza. Sunday, April 22, 2018 from 8am to 4pm. 10101 Jefferson Blvd, Culver City, CA 90232

2. Clean up Litter.

The City of Los Angeles’ storm water division publishes a great list of organizations that host cleanup events. Check it out here. If coordinated clean-up isn’t your thing just carry an extra bag while you walk the dog. Pick up any trash you see. You’ll be amazed at what a difference you can make.

3. Go for a walk.

What better way to celebrate Earth Day than to see the beauty of nature first hand? The National Park Service is offering free admission on April 21 to National Parks across the country in celebration. If you can’t make it to a National Park there are plenty of other hiking opportunities in SoCal. Some of my personal favorites in LA are Runyon Canyon and Baldwin Hills Overlook.

Foodie Corner

Vegan Blueberry and Kiwi Tart
This vegan tart is very easy to make. Blueberries are rich in antioxidants and tofu is a great source of protein and iron. This tart is a perfect, sweet finish to meals and parties year-round.

Prep: 40 mins
Cook: 10 mins
Yields: 1 9-inch tart (8 servings)
 

What You’ll Need

Vegan pie crust, purchase or make your own:
https://www.thespruceeats.com/flaky-vegan-pie-crust-recipe-3377320
 
For the Custard Filling:

1 package/12.3 ounces firm silken tofu (not “lite” variety)
1/3 cup sugar
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon salt (plus more to taste)

For the Blueberry and Kiwi Topping:
4 cups blueberries (fresh or frozen)
2 fresh kiwis
3/4 cup sugar
3 tablespoons cornstarch
3 tablespoons lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon salt

How to Make

  1. Preheat the oven to 375 F. Cook the pie crust according to the package directions. 
  2. Make the filling. In a blender, combine the silken tofu, sugar, lemon, and salt and process until smooth. Pour into the prepared pie crust or tart shell and chill for 2 hours or until set.
  3. Meanwhile, make the blueberry and kiwi topping. Combine the blueberries, kiwi, and sugar in a medium-sized saucepan, stirring to coat.
  4. In another cup, combine the lemon juice, cornstarch, and salt, mixing to dissolve the cornstarch. Pour the lemon-cornstarch mixture over the blueberries and kiwi and cook over medium heat, stirring often, until the mixture is the consistency of a thick syrup, about 5-8 minutes.
  5. Allow the mixture to cool. Spread over the tofu custard filling and return the tart to the refrigerator to chill for 1-2 hours more, or until set. Serve cold.

School Garden Corner

Rosemead High School

Culinary arts students chopping fresh herbs for pizza.

Garden club adding homemade compost to raised beds for nitrogen fixation.

Arroyo High School

Students mulching and weeding during Garden Workshop Day

Alumni talking to students about her experience in environmental agriculture in Northern Africa

 

Friendly lizard found in the garden

Radishes harvested during Garden Workshop Day

Sage Oak Charter School

Terrarium gardens made by homeschooled students

Homeschooled students named and created their own garden sign

Star After-School Program

Students turning compost

Altadena students decorating their flower pots

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