Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Sharing Backyards with 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, students who 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.