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May 24, 2013
‘Grow Anywhere Tour’ – Brentwood, NY Grows A Garden
Burpee  Edible Gardening Team Members

Everyone remembers that one teacher who always had a smile. Who always brought joy and enthusiasm to the classroom. Who took a confusing or complicated topic and made it interesting and fun. For Brentwood High School, that teacher is Gary Repetto. He is the force behind their school garden and science programs, and was leading the charge of his fellow faculty volunteers as the Burpee Home Gardens “Grow Anywhere Tour” came to town.

Gary (pictured at-right) didn’t waste time telling the Burpee Team how much online voting to bring the tour to Brentwood meant to the community. Folks stayed up late; they used their lunch hour to make sure the school would win 500 free vegetables plants and thousands of pounds of fresh food. We were thrilled to see the anticipation on everyone’s face as we unloaded boxes of produce and shared details on the various plants we had to offer.

The crew wasted no time bagging up tomatoes, peppers and cucumbers, and as the first guests arrived, they were ready to share healthy living and gardening tips with each of them. Families, students, neighbors, even some security guards! All lined up for the chance to grow vegetables this summer. Popular choices for Brentwood were watermelon, beefsteak tomatoes, hot peppers, cilantro and cucumbers.

At some times during the event, folks drove up and were serviced by the volunteers right from their cars. That’s drive-thru gardening at its finest!

Brentwood High School is located on Long Island, and is one of the largest high schools in New York State. It is only a few miles from New York City, but this suburban location still has a hard time purchasing fresh veggies for daily meals. Gary and his colleagues are hoping that by getting students aware of where their food comes from they’ll learn not only a life lesson on gardening, but also the knowledge to make healthy choices.

As the day wound down, we toured the Brentwood greenhouse and garden space with Gary. He was especially proud of the new garden shed the students built to house tools and necessities. He also told us about a plastic bottle recycling program that had great results. Though the ground still needed tilling, the plants donated from Burpee Home Gardens will give the students a well-rounded look at growing different types of vegetables and herbs. Brentwood also donated some of the free plants to its neighboring schools and community garden spaces. Way to share the love!

The warm welcome and hospitality of Brentwood won’t soon be forgotten. We wish them the best as their garden grows this season, and we thank everyone who came out to help and participate in the “Grow Anywhere Tour” visit.

Only one more stop for the #BurpeeTruck this spring! Don’t miss our visit in Philadelphia… Follow the truck @BurpeeHG.

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