Community gardens are collaborative projects on shared open spaces where participants share in the maintenance and products of the garden, including healthful and affordable fresh fruits and vegetables. Community benefits include: (http://www.stpaul.gov/depts/parks/environment/gardens/index.html)
- Food production in community gardens can provide a significant source of food, provide food security and alleviate hunger.
- Community gardens allow families and individuals without land of their own the opportunity to produce food.
- Community gardens provide access to nutritionally rich foods that may otherwise be unavailable to low-income families and individuals.
- Studies have shown that community gardeners and their children eat healthier diets than do non-gardening families.
- Exposure to green space reduces stress and increases a sense of wellness and belonging.
- The benefits of Horticulture Therapy can be and are used to great advantage in community gardens.
- Community gardens increase a sense of community ownership and stewardship and develop community identity and spirit.
- Community gardens bring people together from a wide variety of backgrounds (age, race, culture, social class).
- Community gardens build community leaders and offer a focal point for community organizing.
- Community gardens offer unique opportunities for new immigrants to Produce traditional crops otherwise unavailable locally,
- Take advantage of the experience of elders to produce a significant amount of food and provide inter-generational exposure to cultural traditions,
- Offer a cultural exchange with other gardeners and learn about block clubs, neighborhood groups, and other community information.
- Community gardens provide opportunities to meet neighbors and build community cohesion.
- Community gardens increase eyes on the street as an effective community crime prevention strategy.
- Practical math skills and basic business principles
- The importance of community stewardship and environmental sustainability
- Job and life skills and allow them to interact with each other in a socially meaningful and physically productive way.
- Provide a place to retreat from the noise and commotion of urban environments which heightens the awareness and appreciation for living things.
- Provide much needed green space in lower-income neighborhoods which typically have access to less green space than do other parts of the community.
- Have been shown to actually increase property values in the immediate vicinity where they are located.
Valley Permaculture Alliance, http://www.vpaaz.org/
International Rescue Committee, IRC in Phoenix, http://www.rescue.org/us-program/us-phoenix-az
Maricopa County Department of Public Health, Nutrition and Physical Activity Division, http://www.maricopa.gov/publichealth/Services/Nutrition/default.aspx
American Community Garden Association (ACGA), https://communitygarden.org/
The University of Arizona Cooperative Extension Service, https://extension.arizona.edu/maricopa
Growing Community Gardens A Denver Urban Gardens’ Best Practices Handbook for Creating and Sustaining Community Garden, http://dug.org/storage/public-documents/DUG_Best_Practices_digital_copy.pdf
Redwood City Community Gardens – Best Practices, Redwood City, CA, http://www.redwoodcity.org/manager/initiatives/gardens/bestpractices.html
Best Management Practices for Community Gardens, Rutgers University, http://communitygarden.rutgers.edu/files/Best%20practices%20for%20CGs.pdf
Starter Kit: Environmental Best Practices for Chicago Community Gardens, Chicago Community Gardeners Association, http://chicagocommunitygardens.org/resources/environment-and-safety/starter-kit-environmental-best-practices-for-chicago-community-gardens/
COMMUNITY GARDEN BEST PRACTICES, City of Portland, https://www.portlandoregon.gov/parks/65819
Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Healthy Places, Community Gardens, http://www.cdc.gov/healthyplaces/healthtopics/healthyfood/community.htm
Community Garden Workbook, SLHI,
Community Health and Food Access: The Local Government Role, http://bookstore.icma.org/freedocs/E43398.pdf
BUILDING A COMMUNITY GARDEN IN YOUR PARK: Opportunities for Health, Community, and Recreation, National Recreation and Park Association, http://www.nrpa.org/uploadedFiles/nrpaorg/Grants_and_Partners/Parks_and_Conservation/Resources/Community-Garden-Handbook.pdf
Multiple Benefits of Community Gardens, Gardening Matters, http://www.gardeningmatters.org/sites/default/files/Multiple%20Benefits_2012.pdf
Establishing Land Use Protections for Community Gardens (PHLP) http://changelabsolutions.org/sites/phlpnet.org/files/CommunityGardenPolicy_FINAL_Updated_100608.pdf
Seeding the City – Land Use Policies to Promote Urban Agriculture (PHLP) http://changelabsolutions.org/publications/seeding-city
Land Use and Planning Policies to Support Community and Urban Gardening http://norcalheal.cnr.berkeley.edu/docs/CommunityGardenPolicyInventory_PHLP.pdf
“Start a Community Food Garden…the Essential Handbook”, https://communitygarden.org/support/order-copy-start-community-food-garden-essential-handbook-today/
The Impact of Home and Community Gardening In America, National Gardening Association, http://www.gardenresearch.com/files/2009-Impact-of-Gardening-in-America-White-Paper.pdf
Community Garden Toolkit • Portland Parks & Recreation, https://www.portlandoregon.gov/parks/article/282909
COMMUNITY GARDEN TOOLKIT: STARTING A COMMUNITY GARDEN, Fresno County, http://fresnometmin.org/downloads/community-gardens-toolkit.pdf
Twin Cities COMMUNITY GARDEN START-UP GUIDE. Minneapolis/St. Paul, http://www.gardeningmatters.org/sites/default/files/startupguide.pdf
From Neglected Parcels to Community Gardens: A Handbook, Wasatch Community Gardens, Salt Lake, https://wasatchgardens.org/files/images/FromNeglectedParcelsToCommunityGardens.PDF
Ground Rules – A Legal Toolkit for Community Gardens http://changelabsolutions.org/sites/default/files/CommunityGardenToolkit_Final_(CLS_20120530)_20110207.pdf