Student-Led Greenhouse Will Help Fight Food Insecurity in St. Petersburg

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (CW44 News At 10) – Students in St. Petersburg are getting their hands dirty for a great cause, feeding families in need.

“That’s one thing about [St. Pete] Youth Farm, we’ve got a lot of kids doing powerful stuff,” said Justin Bowman, a senior at St. Petersburg Catholic High School.

USF St. Petersburg joined local high school students to unveil a brand new fresh, and local greenhouse Monday.

“They’re doing aquaponics working with fish, we also have some kids who are going to start doing some make-[at]-home gardens so people can actually bring the nutrients for their community into other communities,” said Bowman.

“Okra plants, pigeon peas, Cuban oregano which is incredible, and pepper plants,” added Carla Bristol who has been overseeing and holding meetings leading up to the initiative.

Located in the Thirteenth Street Heights and Cromwell Heights neighborhoods, organizers say the new greenhouse will help fight food insecurity.

“Only ten blocks away from where the Walmart and the Sweet Bay closed over five years ago,” clarified Bristol.

“We noticed that there was a discrepancy in the available nutrients that we could get in this community,” Bowman added. “There’s a problem and we need to fix it and this is one of the solutions that we came up with.” Students will use gardening to help provide fresh food year round. “I’ve worked with composts, I’ve worked with potting plants, even harvesting plants and, you know, a chef has to try their own food so I’ve tasted just about everything out here.. even the habaneros.”

“We have bags and they fill their bags with, like, for example, mustard was a big one. Right now, we’re planting a lot of okra,” said Bristol.

You can contact the youth farm directly by clicking here.