Working hand in hand with Bronx residents, Bronx Green-Up strives to benefit local communities through education and hands-on training. Discover what NYBG’s horticultural outreach is all about.
The Mission of Bronx Green-Up, the community gardening outreach program of The New York Botanical Garden, provides horticulture education, training and technical assistance to Bronx residents, community gardeners, urban farmers, local schools, and community organizations. The program is the visible presence of the Botanical Garden beyond the Garden’s gates, inspiring NYC residents to get involved in improving their communities through greening projects.
Our work is threefold: we are trainers in urban horticulture; partners on Bronx greening projects, most often in community gardens and urban farms; and a conduit for bringing people and resources together to bring these projects to fruition. We create and redevelop urban green space. We teach people of all ages how to care for urban land and grow food with limited resources. We partner with local individuals, groups, and institutions to further community gardening efforts.
Bronx Green-Up offers free horticulture certificate programs and workshops throughout the year. Our certificate series—Grow More Vegetables, Soil is Alive, and Pruning—combine in-depth classroom instruction with hands-on practice in local community gardens. Those that participate in our programs give back to their communities, volunteering hours and/or creating their own projects. Our seasonal garden workshops take place throughout the Bronx, with community gardens and urban farms serving as outdoor classrooms. Bronx gardeners may request workshops on topics like seed starting, fruit tree care, weed identification, and more.
Bronx Green-Up also hosts a number of annual events, such as the Harvest Festival, which bring community gardeners together to celebrate their bounty, share information, and learn from each other. In addition, we work closely with the NYC Compost Project, hosted by The New York Botanical Garden, to provide compost outreach and education to Bronx community gardeners, schools, residents, organizations, and businesses.
Last year, Bronx Green-Up conducted 323 activities and events, reaching approximately 4,600 people representing over 75 gardens, greening groups, schools, and community organizations. The NYC Compost Project hosted by The New York Botanical Garden reached an additional 3,013 people through 248 activities conducted for more than 60 groups. This was made possible with the help of volunteers who contributed almost 1,500 hours. Bronx Green-Up is where the Bronx community goes to get involved in urban gardening. People approach us with their ideas—for gardens, for workshops, for projects—and we help to make them a reality.
Recent work includes:
- With our partner International Rescue Committee, we built New Roots Community Farm with hundreds of volunteers over 40 community workdays.
- We worked to strengthen school gardens and experiential learning at PS 87, PS 47, and PS 93 by working outdoors with classes—a partnership with Trust for Public Land and the Garden’s Children’s Education program.
- We helped to get a chicken coop and children’s garden established at Taqwa Community Farm, part of a weeklong project with In Good Company.
- We partnered with the community at Church of the Mediator to build a garden on the property of this historic church in Kingsbridge.