Simple Frugal Garden Update: The Community Garden

community garden

**should probably make a note that this picture didn't actually come from MY garden, since most of my seeds have just started sprouting.

We here in the Silly Simple family are participating in a community garden for the first time this year.  So far we LOVE it.  It is pretty much just like what I imagined a local gardening club would be like, except all the members are gardening right next to each other. I started doing some research on community gardens and discovered that they come in a few different forms… and all of them are pretty cool.  Here are four simple question and answers for community gardens that I have found in my research around the web.

  1. What is a community garden?
    • According to the ACGA a community garden can be urban, suburban, or rural. It can grow flowers, vegetables or community. It can be one community plot, or can be many individual plots. It can be at a school, hospital, or in a neighborhood. It can also be a series of plots dedicated to “urban agriculture” where the produce is grown for a market.
  2. What impact do community gardens have on the community?
    • In short– community gardens can have a big impact on the communities in which they are a part.  Check out a few of these gardens:
      • Liz Christy Garden in NYC was one of the earliest urban community gardens.  Over the years it has transitioned into a lush oasis of calmness and green in the middle of Manhattan.
      • The Garden, a recent indie film depicting the controversy surrounding the South Central Farm in Los Angeles.  The gardeners were evicted back in 2006 due to a confusing set of circumstances (way too contentious and complicated to get into here, to find out more go here)
      • Growing Hope based in Ypsilanti, MI is doing great work within the community teaching and enabling people to grow their own food.  Checking out this great video on Growing Hope’s activities.
      • Slow Food Detroit summarizes the work of several different organizations working together within the troubled city of Detroit in order to help pave the way for the transition of the whole city.
  3. Why should I join a community garden?
    • In my mind, the greatest benefit of the garden is in joining your community.  You can meet your neighbors, and make new friends along the way.
    • You will have access to your own delicious locally and organically grown produce, and you will know it is organic because you grew it.
    • It is a simple, frugal hobby.  There doesn’t have to be an enormous amount of supplies purchased if using using a community tool chest, and you don’t even need a back yard!
  4. How can I find a community garden near me?
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5 Responses to Simple Frugal Garden Update: The Community Garden

  1. Russo says:

    What a cool idea. I love coming back to your blog because you post things that nobody ever does, you are an original. Cannot wait till next week

  2. Little House says:

    I’ve seen a couple of community gardens in neighboring cities near me, but I don’t know how to go about getting a plot (the gardens near me are individual plots next to each other). Could you write a post about that? How did you start gardening in your community garden?

    • sillysimple says:

      Since community gardens are very much grass roots efforts finding one in your area can be a little bit wonky. I have found that the website below has a lot of gardens listed with contact info. In my experience many gardens are run by or affiliated with the local government so you might want to check with your local parks and recreation as well?

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