Welcome to the Burlington Area Community Gardens history blog!

This website is dedicated to sharing the story of the modern era of community gardening in Burlington, from the modest beginning in 1972 to the present. 

At dozens of community sites, thousands of people of diverse ages, abilities, and cultural backgrounds grow vegetables, herbs, and flowers, while cultivating long lasting bonds of friendship. 

Gardens for All sponsored community gardens in Burlington and surrounding towns from 1972 to 1982. At the peak of the garden boom during the mid-1970s, Gardens for All coordinated 27 community garden sites with more than a thousand garden plots.

From 1983 to 1986, Burlington Area Community Gardens operated as an independent nonprofit organization coordinating eight community garden sites with approximately 350 garden plots

Since 1987, Burlington Area Community Gardens has operated as a city-wide program administered by the Burlington Parks and Recreation Department. The program has expanded during the past 35 years to include 14 community garden sites ranging from small neighborhood gardens to large allotment style gardens.

For fifty years, Burlington's community gardens have offered city dwellers a place to cultivate food, enjoy the natural world, and form lasting friendships. The slide below depicts a summer day in 1996 at Starr Farm Community Garden, in Burlington's New North End. Joe Benoit (center) pauses from hoeing to talk with Claudia Walsh (left). The large bean teepee in the upper right corner marks the center of the Starr Farm Kids Garden. Lake Champlain sparkles is in the background. 

In compiling a detailed historical account, the author hopes that the blog posts will be useful for research on the role of community gardening as part of a sustainable local food system. The history posts are intended to highlight the role that Burlington's community gardens have played as an impetus for community garden initiatives in Vermont and across the country.

The blog is best viewed on a laptop or desktop computer. Archival images of newspaper and magazine stories accompany many of the blog posts. The images can be enlarged for easier reading by pressing Ctrl+ on a PC.