New Fence Helps Feed Families in Baltimore

Baltimore, MD | May 2015 | By National Recreation and Park Association

MD Baltimore Community Garden 410x410

Baltimore City Recreation and Parks (BCRP) was one of 15 communities awarded a $10,000 grant for the NRPA Grow Your Park program. Research through Grow Your Park has shown that community gardens contribute a number of positive impacts on participants and the surrounding community, such as supporting community health and wellness, strengthening intergenerational connections, revitalizing parks, providing access to fresh produce, connecting children to natural environments, and more!

The grant benefits low-income families through the donation of the locally grown fruits and vegetables. BCRP utilized their grant funds for significant improvements to Rockrose City Farm, once a defunct ball field, and now a flourishing community gardening space.

Rockrose City Farm used grant funds to install a much needed 175’ x 125’ fence around 6,000 square feet of gardening space. This fence was actually the determining factor whether or not the Rockrose garden was to be planted. In addition to the community garden space, there are 29-39 family garden plots and BCRP plans to expand the gardening space in the future. The gardens expect to yield more crops than ever before including potatoes, beans, broccoli, leafy greens, squash, berries, cucumbers and much more.

Rockrose City Farm’s donated approximately 1,000 pounds of produce to low-income families at no cost. The harvested produce is distributed through the Amazing Grace Lutheran Food Pantry and Moveable Feast, both located in Baltimore City. Additional family plots and community gardening space are being planned which will make it possible to grow more produce and ultimately to benefit more families and individuals in need.

In addition to the production of nutritious foods, community gardens like Rockrose City Farm promote healthy lifestyles, connect people to nature, cultivate community ties, and strengthen self-sufficiency for many. The entire process from planting to harvesting helps create a more active, engaged and healthy community.