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Photo courtesy of Lenny Bruno
Photo courtesy of Lenny Bruno
Lenny Bruno’s backyard has been a greenhouse in Queens for more than 25 years, with the educator growing tomatoes, eggplant, cucumbers and squash.

For most of the year, Howard Beach resident Lenny Bruno is a teacher.

Two months during the summer, however, he is a gardener.

Bruno’s backyard has been a greenhouse in Queens for more than 25 years, with the educator growing tomatoes, eggplant, cucumbers and squash. Nothing grown is wasted, Bruno said, and he shares his vegetables and recipes with neighbors and friends.

“It’s just a wonderful, nice tradition,” said his sister and next door neighbor, Maria Barreca.

He also teaches with what he grows.

As a language instructor, Bruno said he incorporates vegetables and cooking into his Italian culture classes.

As the summer winds down and the harvest on most of his crop is passing its prime, Bruno said he still has plenty of fig trees that ripen from now until September.

“It’s a nice hobby [and a] tremendous amount of work,” he said. “It’s a miniature Italian villa.”

 

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