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Growing to Green

Growing to Green is Columbus’ largest organized effort to promote and provide free community resources for community gardening and city beautification. Initiated in March 2000, Growing to Green has assisted in the start-up or renovation of more than 250 community gardens throughout the central Ohio area.

Growing to Green assists individuals and groups interested in starting a community garden, neighborhood beautification project, or a school learning garden. For more information, contact Bill Dawson, Growing to Green Coordinator, at 614.715.8090.


We Dig Ohio! Urban Agriculture & Community Garden Summit

We Dig Ohio 2018 is Saturday, March 24, 2018!

This annual one-day summit explores urban agriculture and community gardening in the Ohio region.  What’s happening in the field of urban agriculture and community gardening? Become versed in relevant topics that will expand your gardening expertise. Attend sessions and workshops in a variety of subjects. Network, share and celebrate with individuals involved in projects across Ohio and beyond. Registration includes admission to the Franklin Park Conservatory and Botanical Gardens, lunch and break refreshments.

Register Now           Apply for Scholarship              Call For Proposals

Thank you to the following event sponsors:

Growing to Green Awards

Community Gardener of the Year

Presented to an individual who is exceptionally dedicated to his/her neighborhood garden and or the movement of community gardening in central Ohio. An award of $250 will be given to the winner to be applied toward his/her community gardening project.

Community Garden of the Year

Presented to a neighborhood gardening project for beautification and/or food production. An award of $500 will be given to the top garden in this category.

Education Garden of the Year

Presented to a school or other organization that utilizes garden projects for educational purposes. An award of $500 will be given to the top garden in this category.

Paul B. Redman Youth Leadership Award

Presented by the Women’s Board of Franklin Park Conservatory and Botanical Gardens, this award is given to an outstanding youth gardener age 18 or younger. An award of $250 will be given to the winner to further his/her education and interest in gardening or to make improvement in his/her community.

Neighborhood Improvement Project of the Year

Presented to a park, gateway, streetscape, school or other community beautification project. An award of $250 will be given to the project that has done the most to benefit its surrounding community.

Sustainability Award

Presented by the American Community Gardening Association, this award is given to a garden that is utilizing sustainable community gardening practices, including community-building activities, sustainable garden design, utilization of green practices (e.g. rain barrels) and has proven sustainable over the long term. $250 from ACGA will be awarded to further advance the sustainability of the community garden.

Boyd W. Bowden Garden Impact Award

Presented to a community garden that has shown significant and sustainable impact on the health and vitality of its community in one of five areas: Nutrition and Wellness, Food Production, Children’s Education, Job Training, and Celebrating Culture. This award honors Dr. Bowden’s love of gardening and his life-long commitment to improve community health and the quality of life of citizens in Central Ohio. Presented by the Osteopathic Heritage Foundation and the Bowden Family, the winner of this award will receive $750 to further impact the community and garden project.

Growing to Green Hub Gardens

Twelve hub gardens throughout central Ohio serve as gardening education centers for their communities and as inspirational resources for anyone interested in community gardening. These well-established gardens and urban farms excel in serving their neighborhood by providing increased access to fresh, healthy food, and developing programs for youth education, job training, and cultural enrichment.

Download a list of hub gardens.

The Scotts Urban Garden Academy

Made possible by a partnership with The Scotts Miracle-Gro Company and The Columbus Foundation, this grant program provides funding and free courses to provide the skills and resources needed to successfully implement and sustain a community garden. For more information about grant opportunities and application deadlines, call The Columbus Foundation at 614.251.4000.

Community Gardener Survey

Are you involved with a community garden? Want to learn more about Growing to Green? Please take a moment to complete this survey.