Larson Park Garden May Become County Model

New incentive would allow gardeners and community organizers may be able to use public space for agricultural projects

Last spring a small patch of grass drew together community leaders with a simple plan – build a garden in

But the garden, which supplies residents with small patches to farm for flowers and produce, may have larger ramifications, as county officials look towards replicating the plan throughout Sonoma County.

Sonoma County officials will hold a meeting Wednesday night, seeking public input for a project which would allow open, vacant and public space to be redeveloped – and allocated – for citizens to use as community gardens.

County officials see it as a way of effectively using empty space, and giving low-income people – who may not have access to a yard or growing space – a chance to grow their own nutrient-dense food.

But in Larson Park the gardening process has settled into a steady rhythm of community garden days and individual plots, organized by Nuestra Voz, a community organizing coalition based in the Springs.

Sonoma County Supervisors have selected 10 other garden sites, including a spot in Maxwell Farms Regional Park, to expand the model.

Register for Wednesday's meeting at the Santa Rosa Veterans Memorial Hall  online. The meeting lasts from 6:30 - 8 p.m., and will allow for feedback on the application process and guidelines for gardeners interested in creating their own site. 

The initiative is organized by UC Cooperative Extension office, with help from the county's water, parks, open space and health agencies. 

Richard April 11, 2012 at 12:55 AM
This is an excellent initiative where everyone gains.
Dorothy April 11, 2012 at 01:46 PM
This is a great idea! I hope that the plans work out.


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