SATURDAY JULY 14 11am-3pm (Garden is open until 5pm or later) On Open Gardens Day we invite you to meet the insects and animals that work together with humans in our garden. The main focus of this day is to introduce the community to our compost bins -which are full of worms and other creatures- and encourage everyone to drop off their compostables.  Beekeepers, Feral Cat Colony Caretakers and a Master Composter will be on hand to show you our beehive, our feral cat apartment house and our compost bins,  We will show you the basics and have literature on feral cat care-taking and composting in NYC.


Participants are welcome to bring their compostables and questions about animals and insects in NYC Gardens – if you are interested you can help us turn the compost and bring home a bag of compost.


From Anthony one of our beekeepers


It’s now been three weeks since the (new) bees have been installed. So far they seem to be doing well. They’ve started building on the frames within the hive and the hive seems healthy. The queen is laying eggs and the workers are out foraging and tending to the hive.

We thought it would make sense to start our Bee Update series by talking about the Queen Bee. The Morris Jumel Queen Bee can be seen in the attached photo (the bee with the red dot). The Morris Jumel Queen started out as a common larva, no different than a worker or drone larva. However, early in development, this larva was fed an additional amount of the appropriately named “Royal Jelly” by the worker bees. Royal Jelly is produced by the nurse bees. Once the larva becomes an adult it goes out to mate and return to the hive. Back at the hive its sole purpose is to lay eggs and populate the hive. The queen typically lives up to 3 years (average worker bees live about 4 weeks). When the worker bees sense less pheromone from the queen a new queen larva is created for replacement.

The red dot on the queen has significance; it indicates that this queen was born this year (2018). Without the dot it can be difficult to locate the queen in the hive as the only real distinguishing feature is that the queen is slightly longer than the worker bees. The covered cells seen below the queen in the photo are capped cells filled with larva.


2018 garden meetings see also how to join the garden.

All meetings take place in the garden at noon, rain or shine

  • April 14, 2018
  • May 5, 2018
  • June 2, 2018
  • July 7, 2018
  • August 4, 2018
  • September 1, 2018
  • October 6, 2018

OPEN HOURS – Saturdays & Sundays April – October, 12-5pm & (June-September) Tuesdays 6-9pm The garden is OPEN during these hours. You may often find the garden gate open at least 10 additional unscheduled hours, often in the early evening –  everyone is welcome to visit the garden when it is open!

On July 12, the Garden hosted a Green Thumb Workshop called What’s Going on Inside my Bin? Gardeners from all over the city attended this workshop, which was taught by Kathryn an Organics Recovery Coordinator at the NYC Compost Project Hosted by the  Lower East Side Ecology Center.

IMG_5172Kathryn of the NYC Compost Project/LESEC starts off the workshop.

We learned about the different organisms working away at breaking down stuff in a regular open compost pile by looking at the pile as it is currently cooking. We discussed browns and greens and how to get a good mix of both. Kathryn provided a list of uptown/Bronx landscape companies looking for places to drop off wood-chips, which she recommend as the best browns to use in a compost bin. Everyone is running out of browns at this time of year!


in the picture on the right, Ellen is standing (3-4 feet lower) in our much depleted browns/leaf pile, we hope these will last us through to when the 2017 leaves start to fall. 

We also discussed the garden’s outdoor worm bin, and briefly mentioned the Bokashi Food Fermentation method. The finished product really helps to heat up our garden’s compost. Here’s a blog post on Bokashi made into a handout we gave out at this workshop. We also discussed the best tools for building and maintaining a successful pile.

IMG_5189Kathryn, demonstrating how the Compost Crank works. This can be purchased [$35-$45] through the NYC Compost Project/LESEC and other NYC Compost Project locations

We posted earlier about how how many organics we keep out of the waste stream, and about our hot pile, so come by the garden and contribute your compostables to the cause! And this is not the first compost workshop taught in the garden, but it was definitely the most successful and best attended.

Thanks to Mara Gittleman, Outreach Coordinator for GreenThumb (who took the pictures above) and Kathryn Robling  of the NYC Compost Project/Lower East Side Ecology Center for making this happen. Looking forward to composting with you again soon!

P.S: Here’s a picture of the handout of who will drop off free woodchips in the Bronx (presumably uptown too).

Bronx woodchips


The official 2017 gardening season starts tomorrow. Starting tomorrow the garden will be open, weather permitting, 12-5 Saturdays and Sundays. We will also be open many other unscheduled hours. So if you see the gate open, come on into the garden.

Tomorrow is also the first meeting of the season. Here’s a schedule of all our garden meetings for the 2017 season:


all meetings take place in the garden at noon, rain or shine on the first Saturday of every month during the gardening season.

see everyone in the garden and happy Spring!


Does anyone know who’s dog this is?  Yay we found the owner of this dog and he will be reunited with her tomorrow morning! Found in the Morris-Jumel Community Garden [457 West 162nd street NYC 10032] the afternoon of 9/25/2016. This dog was taken to ACC at about 6pm tonight for vet evaluation where he was identified as a tan and white shih tzu mix.

Today we learned that the owner of this cute little lapdog was shocked to see he was missing after tying him up on Broadway and eventually he wandered into our garden. His name has been changed at ACC to his given name Nemo and he will be going home tomorrow morning! Looks like he got a bath before going home he looks quite fluffy in the picture below.  A vet examination of the dog showed that he had actually already been neutered and his owner says Nemo is 13 years old.


Have a happy rest of your life, Nemo, I hope you come back to visit us the garden sometime soon! – this time come with your owner please!

This little boy was very well behaved and loved sitting on our laps and getting pet. He was also quite dirty, tired, dehydrated and hungry. There was something wrong with his back legs but he didn’t seem in pain.

We later learned he had only been wandering around for a few hours and that he has had something wrong with his back legs for a while

We guess Nemo won’t be tied up alone on the street for a while, what an adventure he had! We thank Furry Rascals pet supply store for connecting us to his owner.


Here’s a picture of Nemo after he got a bath at ACC, they seem to have used a filter, he is really more white and tan as in the first picture.

Please come to our 

Garden Tag Sale!


Clothing, books, toys and plenty of treasures and bargains will be available for purchase.

Prices 25¢ to $10 with markdowns on Sunday.


457 west 162nd street between Edgecombe and Amsterdam Avenues [C train to 163rd street]

All sale proceeds go to supporting the Morris-Jumel Community Garden.

If you would like to donate goods to the garden for the sale, please bring them on Saturday after 11am. Or contact us at


Bach in morrisjumel garden #makemusicny

above photo from a MMNY concert in the M-JCG years ago

On TUESDAY, JUNE 21st from 6-9 PM we will be holding a concert/Summer Solstice Celebration in the Garden as part of the Make Music New York Festival. This festival happens on the summer and winter solstices every year and celebrates the joy of music in our fair Big Apple.
The schedule includes a set with the indie-pop/folk band, “Starbird and the Phoenix” , along with a few other musical acts TBA. At 6 to start off the band will be playing some kid friendly tunes to celebrate my band’s contribution to “End NF;” an album which benefits adolescent brain cancer research.
If anyone else wants to bring food or drinks, that would be wonderful too. Let’s rejoice in the beauty of our garden, and each other! See you in the garden!

cat at the compost binMs. Betty, one of our feral cats surveying the greens kept out of the waste stream

Thanks to Citizens Committee for New York for our Composting Grant. Here’s our calculations for the past year:

Our 3 bin pallet compost bin holds 4 square feet of compostables, 50% is food waste and 50% is garden waste and leaves. We turned these bins 5-6 times since April 2015. Our collection bin holds approximately  4 feet square or 64 cubic feet of materials – which has cooked down to much less, especially as the weather has warmed.  Therefore conservatively estimating 64 cubic feet of compostables, multiplied by  5 compost turns, our three bin compost system has therefore diverted 320 cubic feet or about 12 cubic yards of compostables.

We also have a post about the process of turning the compost – in our old bins.

According to this calculator  1 cubic yard of compost is 800 pounds.  12 cubic yards of compostables might weigh around half the weight of finished compost. We therefore diverted approximately 4,800 pounds of organics from the waste stream in our open compost collection bin. The volume of finished compost cooked down in our removal bin usually ends up being about half of that, so we produced 6 cubic yards of compost which also weighed approximately 4,800 pounds. This compost went to amending the soil of garden plots and tree pits around the community. We will soon have a compost give-away to empty out this bin in preparation for building our new bins.

We collected approximately 100 cubic feet or 3.7 cubic yards of fall leaves in our browns holding bin. Using this calculator for dry leaves, we estimate that we diverted 1271 pounds of leaves from the waste stream. These leaves will eventually be mixed with greens throughout the year.


The gardening season is beginning soon, crocuses are up and other early flowers are poking green shoots through the recent snow. The Green Thumb Grow Together Conference is on March 19th, and our Monthly Garden Meetings and Open Hours begin on April 2. Here’s a list of meetings:

  1. April 2, 2016 noon in the garden
  2. May 7, 2016 noon in the garden
  3. June 4, 2016 noon in the garden
  4. July 2, 2016 noon in the garden
  5. August 6, 2016 noon in the garden
  6. September 3, 2016 noon in the garden
  7. October 1, 2016 noon in the garden

Please endeavor to be on time and dress for the weather. You must attend a meeting to become a garden friend and get on the waiting list for a plot. The waiting list for a plot is around 2 years. More on how to join the garden

From Saturday April 2 – Sunday October 31, 2016 the garden will be open Saturdays and Sundays from 12 -5pm (weather permitting). The garden will be open for many other unscheduled hours/days, anyone can visit when the garden is open. All visitors must be accompanied by a garden member or friend. See also our current by-laws.

Below: Photo by M-J Garden neighbor, BobGarden1