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School and Community Gardens

Tales of Marin’s Community Gardens

There are a myriad of people and places growing healthy food in our community. These include school gardens, neighborhood community gardens, and institutional gardens that enhance food security, provide space to exercise, and build community. All can share the bounty with those in need. Our newly re-published booklet, A Garden for Everyone tells the tales of a variety of these community gardens in Marin, whose gardeners, managers, and educators make the benefits of gardening available to so many. Join the movement to support community gardens across Marin County!

Map of Marin's Community Gardens

Learn where Marin’s community and school gardens are located using this interactive online community gardens map. Did you know Marin County has an estimated 120 community gardens, of which 80 are school gardens? Among these gardens there are distinct garden varieties in which community can often participate, including school gardens.

How do we define school and community gardens?

Community and School Garden Managers working together at Falkirk Greenhouse. Photo: Phil Hinderberger
Community and School Garden Managers working together at Falkirk Greenhouse. Photo: Phil Hinderberger
A community garden is any piece of land gardened by a group of people, utilizing either individual or shared plots on private or public land. The land may produce fruit, vegetables, and/or ornamentals. Community gardens may be found in neighborhoods, schools, connected to institutions such as hospitals, and on residential housing grounds. We divide our project information into general community gardens and school gardens since there are so many school gardens, but we can work together on all!

The goal of the Marin Master Gardener Community Garden Committee is to help the current community gardens of Marin remain viable assets to their communities, while assisting future garden development to enable the healthy benefits of gardening are available throughout the county.

The Golden Gate Village Community Garden, Marin City
The Golden Gate Village Community Garden, Marin City
Our garden consultants can help you evaluate your garden site, advise you on garden needs (tools, irrigation, fencing, storage etc.), and offer suggestions on bed size and soil preparation. We can recommend plant material based on the goals of your garden, help you establish compost or worm bins and answer your garden and bug questions. While we don’t provide labor, we are happy to to provide garden-related demonstrations to gardeners and volunteers to facilitate their education in order they may have the skills to meet gardening needs.

All Master Gardeners have been finger-printed and have passed background screening by the California Department of Justice. We follow horticultural practices appropriate within adopted University California Cooperative Extension guidelines and established Integrated Pest Management Techniques.

The Marin County Community (and School) Garden Needs Assessment

Download ReportMarin County Community Garden Needs Assessment

In 2011, UCCE staff and garden stakeholders from the county worked diligently to get to the heart of what’s happening regarding Marin’s school and community gardens. Case studies from around the country have documented the benefits of gardens on a number of levels, such as contributing to community health, nutrition education, and neighborhood aesthetics, and now we have detailed data for Marin that verifies these claims. For example, did you know that 80% of respondents active in community gardens reported eating more fruits and vegetables, and getting more exercise? Roughly two-thirds of the youth surveyed reported higher environmental literacy as a result of classroom education in the garden. However, there continue to be significant waitlists at neighborhood community gardens.

In the report you will find recommended solutions to help improve current and future community gardens for Marin's residents. Many solutions were expressed during interviews with gardeners, local government officials, and community organization members, thus planting the seeds for the growth of a collective effort to meet garden needs and build community health.

Contact us by email at: schoolandcommgardens@marinmg.org