Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Sharing Backyards via Wasatch Community Gardens

How's this for a fab community planting idea? Gardeners anxious to play in the mud can pair up with property owners who dream of a garden but haven't the time to plant and maintain one. It's the brainchild of Wasatch Community Gardens, a Salt Lake City non-profit organization. 


Imagine this urban gardening scenario:
Bridget lives in a house with a large yard ~ ideal for a garden ~ but she simply doesn’t have the time to plant and maintain one.

Through Sharing Backyards, she meets Melissa and Jane. They want to garden but don't have the space. They team up, planting a garden on Bridget’s property. As the garden flourishes, they all enjoy the successful results of fresh, home-grown produce.


Stories like this are common results of Sharing Backyards, a joint project of Wasatch Community Gardens and Urban Village Cooperative.

Hopeful gardeners, looking for land, pair up with those who have space for a garden and are looking for someone to share it with.

Think of it as Craigslist for urban gardeners!

The online map-based project has listings all over the Salt Lake City area (Wasatch Front and Back,) though listings can be posted for anywhere in Utah.

Once people find someone they are interested in sharing with they communicate via email and go from there.


What could bond people more than choosing which varieties of tomatoes to plant and then sharing in a bountiful harvest of delicious, fresh produce?

Yard-sharers who participated in past years have had great experiences and there are many people with listings on the website looking for a match for the upcoming gardening season.


It's a great way to bring neighbors together and help build strong communities, all while playing in the dirt!  Click here to see how you can participate - meet new friends and join in the fun.


* This is a guest post written by Wasatch Community Gardens, a community-based nonprofit that has served the Salt Lake County, Utah, community for 20 years. Their mission is to empower people of all ages and incomes to grow and eat healthy, organic, local food.

21 comments:

Ramona said...

Kate sharing what we have is a wonderful idea! Thanks for the info. I have a few people near me that do something like this, but it is not as organized.

Alison said...

What a great idea! I know if I couldn't garden, I would just be itching to have access to someone's land like this.

Tessa @ Blunders with Shoots, Blossoms 'n Roots said...

This is fantastic! A whole now twist on community garden- I like it. I know there is a mini farmer there (or spin farmer, they call it) in SLC just a few streets over from where I grew up- she uses I think 3 people's yards and also a 'method' called spin farming- very interesting. Things are finally starting to really change! It' nice to know that there are others out there with the same passion for growing and being more connected with our food :)

Monica the Garden Faerie said...

What a wonderful idea! Oh, and hi! I'm back to blogging! :)

One said...

This seem like a lot of fun and yet productive way to spend time. It is something I would definitely participate in. Community Gardens is not available in our country yet. But where I stay, we have a piece of vacant land in front and we grow and share our bounties from here.

Shady Gardener said...

Way to go! Our son and his wife have shared their backyard garden (enlarging it nearly every year) with friends. I think there were 7 (families) last year! :-)

Tufa Girl said...

Wow, a great idea. Hope it catches on in other locations. Now I need to go meet my neighbor and talk to him about that vacant lot.

Mariana said...

What a wonderful idea! It must be a heart warming experience.

Amy said...

Wow, I love this idea! What a great way to interact with neighbors and to use private space that wouldn't normally get attention.

Deb Mc. said...

Just the sort of thing I could get my arms wrapped around! Doesn't look like there are any folks looking for gardening space at 6400' though. ;-)

Coincidentally, I'm off this evening to a 2-night class on high altitude, raised bed gardening over at the Heber campus of UVU.

The robins have begun their dawn and dusk singing, the sandhill cranes are dancing in the pastures, and we've scores of blackbirds in the tree shouting "spriiiiiiiiing!!"

Liz said...

What a fun idea. It's done all the time, but this makes it a lot more organized.

Dee @ Red Dirt Ramblings said...

I like it!!! What a great idea. People are so creative, and here, they're filling two needs at once.~~Dee

Rose said...

What a great idea! There are two community gardens in our area where people can rent space for a garden, and they are always filled up. This would enable so many more people to garden--definitely a win-win situation for all.

joey said...

Awesome idea. Thanks for sharing. Happy spring, dear Kate :)

Florence said...

Sharing is always a nice and rewarding experience. These ladies are really worth envying.

Mariana said...

Cooperative work make communities happier and stronger. Great idea!

Anna said...

It is a great idea that should be imitated in many other places. It is away of helping a neighbor have a great garden.

Kate @ Gardening and Gardens said...

This is such a great idea! I love the concept of doing it in your community and sharing the benefits. Very very cool. thanks for posting and sharing this with all of us!

Janie said...

Sounds like a great idea. Everyone benefits.

Annette Campbell said...

What a great way to strengthen community and live frugally! My friends and I have been "splitting" our household expenses in many ways with a collaborative consumption tool called SplitStuff (http//splitstuff.com). Why not split backyards as well? In fact, a few neighbors could get together to buy gardening tools, soil, seeds, etc., and then split the cost. Hopefully with the guidance of online communities like yours at Wasatch, more neighborhoods can get cracking on this great idea!

Mariana said...

Sharing is always wonderful. Thanks for including this guest post.