How To Start A Community Garden

How to Start A Commiunity-people-working-in-the-garden
People working in the garden

Start a Community Garden with these 7 Steps

“Great minds think alike” this is so true when it comes to a community garden, a community garden consists of a group of people with the same goal in mind which is to work together in an outdoor environment utilizing whatever space is available to either improve or create a green space that is cared for or maintained by the community. This collective effort not only foster better relationship but impacts the environment as well as our ecosystem in a positive way that encourages biodiversity.

A community garden can be so rewarding where partners or participants can reap the fruits of their joint efforts, these gardens can either consist of flowers, fruits, vegetables, herbs, or even a combination and in some cases, livestock are also rare. If you ever thought about a community garden and would love to start one in your area then here is what to do to ensure that the joint efforts of both you and your community are a success.

1. Locate an Area that can be Utilized

The first step when planning to install a community garden is looking for a space in your community that’s available, a vacant lot is a good plot of land. Once you find the lot check with the owner to discuss terms, whether they would allow the community to use that plot of land for free or whether they would be willing to rent it to the community. Check with the zoning law to ensure that the community garden wouldn’t be in violation of regulations, it’s good if this plot of land has a water source or is near one.

2. Make Your Community Aware

Once you have secured the plot of land now it’s time to get the word out to the community to see who might be interested, going from door to door or even using flyers is a great way to get the word out. Also asking for financial support and the advice of the community on ideas that can be implemented will help to raise interest and will encourage persons who are interested to take ownership and to feel like they are a part of something worthwhile.

Once persons buy into the idea of a community garden documentation should be drawn up outlining the rules and what’s expected of each participant, once the document is read and understood, have them sign it but give them a copy to refer to as the need arise. This document will assist in avoiding any misunderstanding that may arise. The documentation should also include the job assignment of each person.

3. Look for Funding

Based on the side of the plot of land a community garden can cost a few hundred or thousand dollars in start-up fees, these fees can also be affected by the garden type, plant materials the number of plants, and the size of plants at the time of purchase. Liability insurance is a must and can cost several hundred or thousand dollars, once your community garden is installed there is the matter of maintenance that’s also another fee so a budget along with a plan must be created as to how the maintenance side will be funded. Also, consider the cost of purchasing tools

4. Discuss what Type of Garden to be Installed

What type of garden will you be installing, will the garden consist of fruits, vegetables, ornamental plants, and herbs or will it be a garden with a combination of plants? The amount of light that’s available must be considered along with the soil condition. Have the community members give their input, a key to having plants growing continually in a community garden is to choose plants that produce throughout the season. Ensure to install some early summer crops that will produce even during the fall months.

5. Developing the Site

Once you have agreed on the type of garden it’s time to execute the plan, ensure every member knows what their role is from prepping the soil to installing the plants. Have persons work in groups on individual beds. If there is a combination of seedlings and seeds the members can be encouraged to start the seeds/seedlings from home and later have plants transfer to the community garden once they start to mature.

6. Discuss the Rules

Give a breakdown of what person or what group is responsible for carrying out the installation of plants to the maintenance practices such as watering, weeding, fertilizing, pruning, general cleaning, and keeping an eye out for garden pests and using the proper maintenance practices to ensure that the community garden remains healthy and thriving.

7. Maintaining the Community Garden

Now that you’ve put in all the hard work from start to finish, keep the community garden going and growing, the way this happens is to ensure all of the members are doing their part by maintaining the garden. Also wherever there are events try to have some of those events take place in the garden. These events will be promotional for your community garden by getting the name out there, and keeping it fresh in the minds of others, who knows this may spark an interest in bringing in new members who may be in a position to further add to the sponsorship.

Some of the produce that’s grown can be donated, keeping the garden involved will have eyes continually on your garden making your garden one of the center attractions of your community.

The final word on how to start a community garden

Creating and maintaining a community garden can be a bit challenging requiring some work, the process can be long depending on the size of the garden the number of members that are involved along with funding. However the good news is the rewards are there and will pay off in huge ways, the benefits of a community garden far outways the cost and the work that’s involved because of the many relationships. Getting to work with persons in your community can be so exciting, this guide will help you along the way ensuring success. Go for it you will be so happy with the results as your community comes together as one.


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About the author

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Norman loves being in the garden, both at home and for his job....
he is 'Natures Little helper' being outdoors, growing his vegetables and flowers from an early age.
Now having spent over 22 years in the profession he want to give some of his knowledge to others...
his vast array of hints and tips you will find scattered over this site will help you no end growing plants in your garden.

1 thought on “How To Start A Community Garden”

  1. Starting a community garden requires a lot of work as you mentioned. My first challenge was locating the garden. Virtually everyone within my community has an interest. So I had to manage their interest and site it in a spot that is accessible and supportive for the plants. Thank you for identifying and setting rules. I think that is where I am making a mistake. I did not set rules.


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