15th Anniversary Stories #2: A Tale of Two Gardens

In 2004, based on the success of our first garden project at 23rd & P, Community Crops (then still known as Co-Sync) expanded to two new garden sites. One was at 46th & Pioneers streets, on three vacant lots that had been unused for many years. The other was at the Antelope Church of the Brethren at 37th & Normal streets. Both sites are still part of our program and have served many hundreds of families in the last 14 years.

The Antelope Church of the Brethren has integrated many sustainability efforts over the years, including collecting rainwater, installing native flower gardens to attract bees and other pollinators, and committing some of their land to a community garden. True to their mission, the members of the Antelope Church of the Brethren are improving their community inside and outside of the walls of their church. John Doran, a long-time member of the church and supporter of Community Crops, was instrumental in the effort to bring the garden at Antelope Church to fruition. John’s background as a soil scientist and supporter of small-scale agriculture around the world, brought a level of expertise that helped this project get started on the right foot and maintain momentum to the present. Read more about the Antelope garden and John Doran’s work with Crops.

At 46th & Pioneers, a stretch of contiguous vacant lots sat empty for many years, until the landowners generously offered to make the space available for Community Crops to create a new garden space. Inspired by the impact that Crops had made at 23rd and P streets, the owners reached out to our office to start a plan for how to move forward. With the speed and efficiency of a young, vibrant collective of people who knew how to be resourceful and could translate their passion into action, the 46th & Pioneers Garden came to life in early 2004. In the first few years, only 10-15 families were utilizing the nearly 1/2 acre space, but by 2017 more than 60 families were placed at 46th & Pioneers.

Learn more about the impact of the 46th & Pioneers garden in this video: