We've spent the past few Saturday mornings digging in the dirt at Ginkgo Organic Gardens on Chicago's north side. This community garden, located on a residential street in a formerly vacant lot, produces approximately 1,500 pounds of produce each year, and donates it to Vital Bridges' Grocery Land, a local food pantry serving people living with AIDS.
Much is yet to be planted this year, but some spring bloomers – like rhubarb, wild asparagus, chives and fava beans – are already popping up. We're told the garden will be unrecognizable by the end of the summer, when it's overflowing with all sorts of fruits and vegetables. We can hardly wait.
Community gardening is a great alternative for urban dwellers with limited space, and Ginkgo is one of many community gardens in Chicago owned by NeighborSpace. If you're in Chicago and interested in volunteering at Ginkgo, please contact Dave Short at email@example.com.
(Images: Joanna Miller)