There is no doubt that urban gardens are growing on us. But should it be a "right" accorded to everyone who wants and NEEDS to grow fresh food? Free community gardens?
Perhaps the desire is simply seeking the sheer pleasure of digging in rich earth and connecting with friends, neighbors and building bridges within communities. Or finding peace and contentment.
From Oakland to Brooklyn, communities are growing gardens in plots of empty land, transforming food deserts into colorful green spaces. Young and old work side-by-side, digging in the earth, planting, learning, experimenting, and sharing the joy of gardening.
For many children who live in blighted urban areas, and don't have access to fresh produce on a daily basis, growing gardens and tasting fresh picked lettuce and tomatoes they planted can be a life-changing experience.
"People are realizing that greenspace and the environmental services that plants provide can be just as important to the overall health of a metropolis as its infrastructure. The interest and demand for public growing space is growing across the country. Advocates say that community gardens provide new opportunities for residents to learn and connect with each other and the city around them, while agencies and city planners see them as a way to beat back the entropy that has come to define declining cities, bringing a welcome respite from the concrete jungle."- text, Enrique Gili, MNN
And so I posit again: Is access to public growing space a "right"? A natural solution to providing fresh, wholesome produce that's accessible and affordable for EVERYONE? A green oasis of beauty and sustainablity that nourishes the belly as it soothes the soul?
Share your thoughts- love to hear from you.
Check out these 12 urban gardens; they're inspiring odes to ingenuity and creativity: Mother Nature Network (MNN)
Lynne, Garden Media Group
photo: West End Community Gardens, West Chester, PA