Pruyne, R. 1994. Gardening for the health of it. Penn State Agriculture, Fall/Winter:34-40.
For many of the men in Graterford maximum-security prison, life is a gray routine of sleep, meals, prison jobs, and indoor recreation. But step outside, and you see quite a different picture. Nearly every inch of tillable earth on the grounds is flourishing with flowers and vegetables. In the evening, as many as 300 inmates can be seen tending their gardens. "They could be playing cards or watching TV," says Nancy Bosold, extension agent in Montgomery County. "But this is where they want to be-with their plants." The gardens are part of a horticulture project coordinated by Bosold, Penn State master gardeners, and other volunteers from the community. "The interest in plants started in the mid-1980s when one of the inmates, Matt Epps, asked if he could start a garden plot and later wrote a proposal for a horticultural program," Bosold explains. "Master gardener Sandy Schultz gathered volunteers and materials, and the program got under way in 1991.