Urban gardens in Vicálvaro

Hello to all Farmers! How are the holidays going? I hope you are enjoying them! Today we return to our old ways to continue showing you the urban gardens of Madrid. Today it’s time to take a walk through the Vicálvaro district, so let’s go!

Cultivation of potatoes in the community urban garden of Vicálvaro

The Vicalvaro District

Vicálvaro is an old municipality in the province of Madrid that currently forms a district located in the southeast of the city of Madrid. It limits to the west with the district of Moratalaz, to the north with San Blas-Canillejas, to the south with Puente de Vallecas and Villa de Vallecas, whose orchards we have already seen in Agrohuerto, and to the east with the municipalities of Coslada, San Fernando de Henares and Rivas-Vaciamadrid.

As a curiosity, the largest deposit of sepiolite that is exploited in the world is in Vicálvaro at the foot of the Almodóvar hill, where a rich deposit of carved flint tools from the Paleolithic, over 200,000 years old, has been found.

Apart from this geological and archaeological wealth, Vicálvaro also has several really interesting urban garden projects. Are you going to miss them?

Orchards in Vicalvaro

This orchard was set up by a group of neighbors who, supported by the Vicálvaro Neighborhood Association, saw the need for a green space for organic farming within the urban environment, a meeting space in which to cultivate, share and to learn. It is a self-managed place of mutual learning where the aim is to recover the capacity to produce their own food and where, in addition to lettuce and tomatoes, good neighborly relations and respect for the environment are cultivated.

This orchard was born from the “Madrid Orchards” program, which allows existing urban orchards to be regularized and new orchards to be developed, and which we discussed earlier in Agrohuerto in the article Regulations of the Madrid City Council for urban orchards. Through this program, the Madrid City Council cedes the plot and provides basic training and seedlings to start with, and it is the neighbors who participate in the orchard who must bear the costs derived from it: compulsory insurance, water consumption, efficient irrigation installation, implements, etc.

Winter crops in the Urban Community Garden of Vicálvaro

The Vicálvaro urban garden belongs to the Network of Urban Gardens of Madrid, which has spent years fighting for the regularization of these spaces and providing mutual support to its members. The management of the orchard is done collectively. Decisions are made in an assembly and horizontally by all the participants.

If you dare to participate, they meet every Thursday at 8:00 p.m. at the local Neighborhood Association (C/Villablanca 35) and as a meeting day every Sunday at 12:00 p.m. in the orchard (Plaza de Alosno).



Urban garden of the CEIP Alfonso X El Sabio

Respect for the environment begins with the family and also at school. The school garden of the CEIP Alfonso X El Sabio is framed within the environmental program of the center. The objective of the school garden is to provide students with a series of gratifying, enriching and unique experiences and, at the same time, to serve as a resource for learning a large part of the curricular content of various subjects such as language, mathematics, natural sciences or art.

All those learnings that are acquired in a practical, experiential and positive way are never forgotten and are also the basis for favorable attitudes and behaviors towards the environment to be installed in children. Thus, the school garden is a wonderful resource to internalize the need to make decisions based on conviction and personal responsibility. It is also an inclusive, compensatory and motivating and even therapeutic activity.

The school campus has elements of the natural environment, the built environment and the social environment: land, plants, trees, insects, water, reading, study, social life, contacts with the outside world, students’ awareness of these environments and the way they learn to treat them will help them become responsible adults.


Students of the IES Villablanca making Ezequiel handsome, the scarecrow of the orchard

IES Villablanca begins its environmental journey with its participation in the Orchards and School Gardens project in the 12/13 academic year, when it requests to participate in the Nature and Biodiversity module. In the 13/14 academic year, a working group of teachers interested in giving new impetus to the project was formed. An Action Plan is defined, which starts with the involvement of various groups of students in the work of the orchard and continues with actions to raise awareness of environmental issues of general interest with which the scope of the environmental education project in the community is expanded. educational.

During the 14/15 academic year, new teachers joined the teaching staff and the three pillars or lines of work of the center’s environmental project were consolidated and improved: work in the garden; the organization of activities to involve and sensitize the entire educational center around various environmental issues.

IES Villablanca students working in the school garden

Within the School Garden Project, the students have worked on the elaboration of QR Codes for each one of the informative plaques of the plants that are on the Valdebernardo Botanical Path. The idea is that any citizen who walks along the Path finds a QR code on the information plates that, when captured from the mobile phone, connects with the file of each floor, which is found on the IES Villablanca website. For this, the students have photographed the plants and have prepared the files where the most important information of each of them is collected. Subsequently they have generated a QR code for each of the files.

That’s all for now. I hope you have found it interesting and that if you live nearby you are encouraged to visit them. See you next time!

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