One of the key elements of GrowNYC’s Open Space Greening (OSG) program is the ability to foster the connection between food, people, health, and the environment. We partner with neighborhood residents to establish buy-in to create and sustain community gardens, parks, and green oases. GrowNYC provides soil, trees, flowers, garden furniture, design advice, and significant technical and material assistance to create and/or rehabilitate 1-3 gardens each year on a substantial level, while helping maintain the more than 60 gardens created in prior years. We also partner with organizations like the NYC Department of Parks and Recreation’s GreenThumb division to assist in targeted efforts like post Super Storm Sandy garden recovery and rehab. Residents participate in workshops and have access to services, tool lending, donated plant material, and open space planning/mapping information they need to steward green spaces. We encourage school gardens and provide options to those lacking on-site proximal open space to realize the goal of ‘No Child Left Inside’ with mini-grants and other resources. Our contribution to the health and beauty of NYC’s urban environment continues to be substantial for the tens of thousands of New Yorkers who participate in open spaces we assist.
Open Space Greening: Fun Facts & Why It Matters
- Garden cultivation connects people with the earth by allowing them to observe nature’s
cycles firsthand. Gardens serve as mini habitats and encourage natural observation of
flora and fauna which leads to greater appreciation of the urban environment and our
link to it.
- Increased physical activity through hands-on gardening: hands-on gardening burns on
average 300 calories per hour.
- Enhanced food security: Each 10’x10’ garden plot in the northeast climate zone produces
an average yield of 100 lbs of fruits and vegetables annually.