Como Park Zoo & Conservatory is serving up scrumptious garden fun for the fourth year in a row in the Chipotle Edible Garden, which opened Friday, June 13.
The Chipotle Edible Garden will feature an array of vegetables, fruits, herbs, and flowers. All plants are grown from seed and every plant in the garden has at least one edible part. It is an exhibit for visitors of all ages, designed to teach about planting and preparing foods that can be grown at home. The Como Zoo gardening staff hopes the exhibit will offer visitors an appreciation for how easy it is to grow a large variety of plants in Minnesota.
The exhibit opened Friday, June 13 and run through September 29. Trained staff and volunteers will be onsite from 10:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m. to answer guests’ questions. At 12:00 p.m. and 3:00 p.m. daily, the Conservatory gardening staff will give gardener talks about growing techniques, ways to harvest and prepare food from your garden, natural pest control, and creative edible landscape design. The garden display covers more than 8,000 square feet and is south of the Visitor Center.
In 2013, Chipotle Edible Garden staff harvested 972.5 lbs. of produce for the Saint Paul Recreation Centers’ various cooking classes and summer programs, and 231.2 lbs. that were fed to Como Zoo animals. The goal for 2014 is to exceed last year’s harvest, which totaled 1518 lbs. Some of the more interesting plants grown in the garden this year include purple cauliflower, “Small Wonder” spaghetti squash, Luffa gourds, Chinese cabbage and eight different varieties of cucumbers.
Steve Ells, founder, chairman and co-CEO, started Chipotle with the idea that food served fast did not have to be a typical fast food experience. Today, Chipotle continues to offer a focused menu of burritos, tacos, burrito bowls (a burrito without the tortilla) and salads made from fresh, high-quality raw ingredients, prepared using classic cooking methods and served in a distinctive atmosphere.
Through our vision of Food With Integrity, Chipotle is seeking better food from using ingredients that are not only fresh, but that—where possible—are sustainably grown and Responsibly Raised™ with respect for the animals, the land, and the farmers who produce the food. In order to achieve this vision, we focus on building a special people culture that is centered on creating teams of top performers empowered to achieve high standards. This people culture not only leads to a better dining experience for our customers, it also allows us to develop future leaders from within. Chipotle opened with a single restaurant in 1993 and currently operates more than 1,650 restaurants including six ShopHouse Southeast Asian Kitchen restaurants, and is an investor in an entity that owns and operates one Pizzeria Locale. For more information, visit Chipotle.com.