July Walking Tour – Mariposa Urban Farm
As cities become an increasingly popular place to live for many, the importance of green spaces becomes even more relevant. Gardens and urban farms provide city-dwellers with a space to connect with nature and a respite from the heat of the urban sprawl. Located in the Denver neighborhood of Lincoln Park, the Mariposa Urban Farm is open to all. Join us as we take a tour through the farm in the peak of the growing season.
- Start your tour on Mariposa Street, between 10th and 11th Avenues. As you look west toward the mountains, notice the main garden site of the farm. This is the first of two gardens that comprise the Mariposa Urban Farm. Follow the sidewalk alongside the garden’s edge to find an opening on the southwest corner. The raised beds are filled with leafy greens, including various types of kales, collard greens and herbs. Keep an eye out for ladybugs (a most important beneficial insect) as you take in the aroma of the Genovese basil. July is a prime growing month, and the tomatoes, peppers and squash take full advantage of the warm weather and long, sunny days. As you walk between the beds, notice the unusual varieties of veggies that come in all shades of colors and a multitude of shapes.
- When you are ready to advance, continue your journey by walking south on Mariposa Street toward 10th Avenue. After your cross over 10th, look to your right and you will see a parking lot with a play area just beyond. The second garden, known as the East Garden, abuts the play area. As you approach the East Garden, enjoy the lush vines of Concord grapes that adorn the garden’s fence. By now, the clusters of berries are about the size of marbles and are starting to turn from green to deep purple. Make your way into the garden by entering on the west side of the fence.
- While this garden is much smaller than the one before, it is an important part of the Urban Farm. Here, we succession-plant lettuce mix and mustard greens for a continuous harvest throughout summer and fall. This garden also provides the community with two varieties of cucumbers (lemon and Diva) along with grapes, Honeycrisp apples and Bartlett pears from the trees in the north section of the garden.
- To finish your tour, head west on 10th Avenue toward Osage Street. Next to the train station you will find Osage Market – a Denver Housing Authority-owned affordable market with delicious food and drink options. This location is also where we hold our weekly farm stands. Come by on Thursdays from 10 a.m. – noon to pick up some produce, meet your neighbors and say hello to your local farmers. All food is distributed free of charge to combat food insecurity within the community.
Thanks for taking this tour!
With management from Gardens’ agricultural experts, Mariposa residents have volunteered with the maintenance and harvesting of the Mariposa Urban Farm, located in their development. Residents volunteering with the program receive a share of the produce every week. Produce from the farm is distributed within the community on a weekly basis at no cost.
Here is more information about the Urban Food Programs at Denver Botanic Gardens and related community-based projects.
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