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 Explore Forge Garden

Find out what SCU's organic garden has to offer in a special happy hour event.

Enjoy some of the best wine in the South Bay while learning about one of Santa Clara University’s many contributions to preserving the beauty and history of our community. The Forge Garden Showcase on April 12 will feature wine from Testarossa Winery and give faculty and staff a chance to explore Forge Garden. The half-acre organic garden has been active since 2009 and features a heritage orchard with fruit and nut trees that have historically grown in Santa Clara Valley.

“There are many ways SCU staff and faculty can use the garden both personally and professionally,” said new garden manager Rose Madden. “We hope everyone will come out and enjoy the wine, spring sunshine, and learn more about how the garden can benefit them.”

The Forge Garden is also home to the 2007 Solar Decathlon house, which won third place in the international competition for energy-efficient building. Last May crews moved the house to the new location, where the home serves as an office for Madden, and provides volunteers with a sink and restroom. It has also been the setting for movie nights and other community-building events. Students on the 2013 Solar Decathlon team will be at the showcase to give tours of the home and talk about the Radiant House, SCU’s entry into this year’s Solar Decathlon.

“It makes the garden feel more like a place people can be comfortable,” said  Lindsey Cromwell Kalkbrenner, director of the University’s Office of Sustainability.  “It’s nice to be able to keep that history on campus and keep it accessible.”

The garden, located one block from Lucas Hall at the corner of Benton and Sherman Streets, is meant to foster a culture of sustainability. Classes can meet there—whether it’s a modern dance class that is learning to “express some of the sensory experience” at the garden or a biology class doing research on how leaves biodegrade, Kalkbrenner said.

Student organizations also use the garden for community building: having a volunteer day, for example, where their members can plant, weed, or turn compost. The garden is also open to the broader community for garden tending on Mondays, Thursdays, and Fridays from 1 to 5 p.m.

The Forge Garden Showcase is a private event for SCU employees on April 12 from 4 to 6 p.m. Please RSVP at:

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