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Pizza garden fills void in underused South Fayette library courtyard

| Wednesday, July 10, 2013, 9:00 p.m.
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Dotty Jones (left), the South Fayette Library's family and youth services assistant, and Maria Joseph (right), former South Fayette Library employee and former director of the Moon Township Public Library, transform an underused courtyard into a vegetable and herb garden.

South Fayette Library's Pizza Garden is not exactly that. There will be no pizzas sprouting out of the ground any time soon.

But eventually, there will be homemade pizza.

The community garden consists of tomatoes, peppers, onions, oregano, basil and other ingredients that will be used to make pizzas at the end of the growing season, according to library director Rebecca Long.

“We're growing what we need to make pizza,” Long said. “Then we're going to have kids (from the library) make pizza from what we've grown in the garden.”

The idea for the garden came from a brainstorming session on how to better utilize the library's courtyard area.

“We thought the courtyard out back was underused,” Long said. “We brainstormed for quite a while, and thought a community garden project was the best thing for out there.”

Long said she plans to incorporate other programs into growing the garden — such as arts and crafts, when the children will make garden markers for the garden.

“It teaches them a lot,” she said. “Like natural and social sciences, and even math, visual arts and nutrition.”

The children also will help tend and care for the garden.

Long said anyone can participate in the pizza garden project. Once a schedule for the crafts and other garden-related programs has been set up, it will be announced on the library website — www.southfayettelibrary.org.

Long said she expects it will take about six weeks for the garden to mature, at which point she and the children will take their homegrown ingredients to the next-door senior center and use them to make their own pizza.

“It gives the children the opportunity to gain some knowledge and skills and help contribute to something,” she said.

The progress of the garden can be followed on Twitter @sflibrarygarden.

Megan Guza is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 412-388-5810 or mguza@tribweb.com.

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