PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — For almost seven years, Jeannie Brooks has tilled and tended to a patch at 27th and Masters in Brewerytown.
“We have broccoli, we have collard greens, we have cauliflower, we have rutabagas, we have spring mix, we have potatoes, we have corn, we have strawberries, garlic, and many more,” she said.
Marathon Grill first farmed here in 2010, and invited neighbors to join. Once Marathon moved out, the community moved in.
Blair Shaw, and fellow gardeners, worked with the city to take over the land.
“We went from having about 10 different gardeners to now having over 50 families represented in this community in this garden,” Shaw said.
Last year, Brewerytown was among the first city gardens to join the Fairmount Park System.
Neighbors are now just finding this green corner, gardeners say, they’re flocking here.
“People have discovered us, and have become life-long customers. Everything is picked and harvested the morning of. So, you can’t get it any fresher than that.”
Over almost five years, Sharon Hildebrand has watched this garden give some neighbors back their health.
“This one woman gave us weekly reports of the weight that she was losing by eating more vegetables and living a healthier lifestyle because she was introduced to vegetables here.”
The locally grown produce also yields lower prices.
“I look at the prices of organic produce in the grocery store, and a bell pepper costs $4 and you know, I can probably grow 40 bell peppers on one plant across the season, and I pay $2 for a bag of seeds.”