No natural resource is more important to community gardeners than water, and identifying and ensuring a dependable source is vital to every garden's success.
Faced with a drought in the summer of 2001 that restricted gardener access to hydrants, GrowNYC and GreenThumb founded the Water Resources Group to promote and fine-tune the idea of water conservation. For our efforts, GrowNYC's rainwater harvesting team received an Environmental Excellence Award from the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation.
There are more than 140 rainwater harvesting systems in New York City community gardens, collecting over 1.5 million gallons of rainwater a year from nearby roofs or shade structures, making water collection convenient for gardeners, and reducing demand on the public water supply system. They also help mitigate rainstorm runoff, which can overload storm drains and pollute the waters surrounding the city.