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Community Gardens

Community gardens are green spaces that are communally cultivated and cared for; these spaces may consist of individually worked plots, communally tended areas, sitting areas, and small-scale children's play areas. They are the result of the shared collective effort of people working together. Community gardening is an effective community-building strategy that contributes to neighborhood renewal, preservation, and stabilization. Community Gardens provide a source of inexpensive, nutritious food and a rewarding personal experience. Enduring stewardship is needed to ensure success. Community gardens demonstrate the impact of sustained volunteer effort.

Boston Natural Areas Network helps coordinate activities related to all of the Boston area's community and school gardens, involving over 10,000 individuals and families, many of them low-income. In partnership with non-profit organizations and government agencies that own community gardens, we work to increase communication and sharing among gardeners through annual events such as the citywide Gardeners Gathering, and the Master Urban Gardener, and Seed, Sow & Grow educational programs.

BNAN believes that community gardens must be open, accessible, and accountable to the communities that they serve. In recognition of the importance of community level stewardship, BNAN organized gardeners to create the Boston Gardeners Council, a citizen-based group dedicated to the promotion of urban gardening in Boston. BNAN also encourages gardens to engage their neighbors by organizing the annual Sounds of the Garden concert series.

In addition to support for all the cityís gardens, Boston Natural Areas Network permanently protects through ownership 59 community gardens; in effect one of Bostonís largest land trusts. We provide a range of land management services and programs necessary to enhance stewardship and support individual garden self-reliance. BNAN helps communities plan for gardens while managing capital improvements and renovations of its gardens.