Connecting people and agriculture is a critical need. We face challenges in feeding our growing population, and most Americans lack of exposure to agriculture and food production. With ever more people living in urban areas, understanding agriculture through an urban lens can provide both a connection and an educational opportunity. Since the U.S. Botanic Garden’s creation 200 years ago, one of the Garden’s primary functions has been growing and demonstrating plants to tell the story of agriculture and economic plants to the public.
Using our own urban setting and building on our long history of growing plants and educating people about them, the USBG is:
- Working to promote science and environmental learning through sustainable agriculture in urban settings;
- Supporting health and well-being in urban communities by increasing food access through local food production;
- Fostering community engagement through meaningful connections with food and agriculture.
By building a network of organizations helping with food production and education across the country, the Garden is strengthening people’s capacity to transform their lives, institutions, and communities through engagement in urban agriculture.
Read below to learn more about the U.S. Botanic Garden’s urban agriculture work.
Urban Agriculture Resilience Program
Community collaborations in urban agriculture are receiving support through a partnership between the United States Botanic Garden (USBG) and the American Public Gardens Association (Association). In 2022, the third year of the Urban Agriculture Resilience Program, 24 urban agriculture collaborations between public gardens and community partners across 19 states are receiving $440,800, the largest amount awarded through the program to date.
The collaborations support food growing and education activities in urban communities experiencing food insecurity and strengthen their capacity to engage in urban agriculture. The 73 collaborating organizations include botanic gardens, arboreta, public schools and school districts, universities, parks and recreation departments, youth organizations, community centers, food banks, health centers, urban farms, community gardens, faith-based organizations, and small businesses.
The Urban Agriculture Resilience Program began in 2020 as a way for the USBG and the Association to help public gardens continue urban agriculture and food growing programs facing funding and capacity challenges due to COVID-19. Learn about the 2020 Urban Agriculture Resilience Program and the 2021 Program >
Public garden and community partner collaborations awarded 2022 funding include:
• Alaska Botanical Garden, in collaboration with Bowman Elementary School Georgeson Botanical Garden, in collaboration with Fairbanks Soil and Water Conservation District, University of Alaska Fairbanks Office of Sustainability, and University of Alaska Fairbanks Vegetable Varieties Program
• Desert Botanical Garden, in collaboration with Unlimited Potential, TigerMountain Foundation, Orchard Community Learning Center, and Roosevelt School District
• Guadalupe River Park Conservancy, in collaboration with UC Master Gardeners of Santa Clara County, and City of San Jose Parks, Recreation and Neighborhood Services
• Olivewood Gardens and Learning Center, in collaboration with Mundo Gardens
• Denver Botanic Gardens, in collaboration with Sun Valley Kitchen and Community Center
• Connecticut College, in collaboration with FRESH New London
• The Delaware Center for Horticulture, in collaboration with Food Bank of Delaware and Kingswood Community Center
• Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden, in collaboration with Miami-Dade County Public Schools
• Garfield Park Conservatory Alliance, in collaboration with Garfield Park Community Council and Chicago Park District
• Bernheim Arboretum and Research Forest, in collaboration with YouthBuild Louisville and Urban Conservation Corps
• Matthaei Botanical Gardens and Nichols Arboretum - University of Michigan, in collaboration with Cadillac Urban Gardens (Southwest Detroit Environmental Vision), Growing Hope, Oakland Avenue Urban Farm, Detroit Black Community Food Security Network D-Town Farm, and Keep Growing Detroit
• Minnesota Landscape Arboretum, in collaboration with Carver County Health and Human Services, Scott County Public Health, and River Valley Health Services
• EarthDance Organic Farm School, in collaboration with Ferguson-Florissant School District, All Among Us Women’s Care Center, and Blessed Teresa Of Calcutta Food Pantry
• City Green, in collaboration with Clifton Recreation Department
• Mary Mitchell Family and Youth Center, in collaboration with New York Botanical Garden, Morning Glory Community Garden, La Finca del Sur, and Castle Hill Resident Association
• Queens Botanical Garden, in collaboration with Astoria Values
• Cape Fear Botanical Garden, in collaboration with Cumberland County Cooperative Extension Master Gardener Volunteers and Fayetteville Urban Ministry
• Grumblethorpe Historic House and Gardens, in collaboration with Awbury Arboretum, Philly Forests, Weavers Way Co-op, and Chef Gail
• Pennsylvania Horticultural Society, in collaboration with Neighborhood Gardens Trust and Furtick Farms
• Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens, in collaboration with Operation Better Block
• Knoxville Botanical Garden and Arboretum, in collaboration with BattleField Farm & Gardens
• Utah State University Extension, in collaboration with Utah State University Botanical Center
• Downtown Greens, in collaboration with Hazel Hill Healthcare Project
See the 2022 awardees and learn about their collaborations: