What is a community garden?

Community gardens are places where people come together to grow a variety of vegetables, herbs, fruits and flowers. They do this by renting individual or shared plots of land within the community garden. In Waterloo Region, community gardens are run by churches, neighborhood associations, non-profit organizations, community agencies, clubs, private landowners, municipalities… just about anyone.

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Benefits of community gardening

Community gardens offer people and the community many benefits. They provide opportunities for both recreational gardening and food production, in underutilized spaces. Community gardens are also great for the environment. Food grown locally reduces green house gases produced by long distance transportation of food. Gardens also contribute to biodiversity of species and help to support populations of pollinators. Finally, community gardens bring people together and may reduce crime rates in the neighbourhood by increasing visibility and engaging citizens in positive initiatives

Community gardens contribute to a healthy lifestyle by:

providing fresh, safe, affordable herbs, fruits and vegetables
helping to relieve stress and increase sense of wellness
getting people active, which improves overall physical health
providing social opportunities that build a sense of community and belonging
giving people an opportunity to learn and share knowledge on gardening, nature, and cooking

Community gardens benefit the community as they help:

build welcoming, safer communities
improve the look of neighbourhoods
reduce pollution by sequestering carbon and reducing the shipping of food over long distances
support pollinator habitats that are necessary for community well-being
reduce food insecurity
connect people to nature
educate people on where food comes from and provide opportunity for people, especially in urban spaces, to engage with their food system
provide an inclusive meeting area where people of all ages and cultural backgrounds can come together to share experiences and knowledge


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