The Ashby Community Garden was founded in 2004 on a privately-owned empty lot in South Berkeley. Today there is a flourishing garden of Community fruit trees, chickens, a beehive, and about a dozen individual plots. Click here to learn about our latest activities.
We're here to grow our own food and cut out the middle man; we are independent of any city program and run on a volunteer basis only. Volunteer members maintain the garden, grow food year-round, and hold community events. Check our calendar section for new events.
The Ashby Community Garden is open limited hours, depending on member's schedules. Stop by to see what's growing, or for information contact:
Bonnie Borucki email@example.com
Ellen Doudna, firstname.lastname@example.org
Angie Knutson, a garden member who also installs irrigation for the Urban Farmer, will be leading a workday to install our new giant rain barrel, generously donated by the Urban Farmer Store. We will be installing gutters on our greenhouse/shed structures and direct the rainwater (which will hopefully be coming soon), into the tank to use for watering the garden.
Actual time TBD, probably around 11am-3pm.
Call Bonnie at 510-332-9456 to volunteer.
UC Berkeley students from the Environmental Design Dept. came to the garden to help with projects and ongoing maintenance. Five garden members lead teams of students in completing new projects:
Nora- preparing community beds and planting cover crops.
Mark- Building a nifty new hugelkultur on the community side.
Ally- Tuning up and redesigning the paths in the pollinator garden.
Rachel- starting new seed flats for winter /early spring crops.
Bonnie- painting front gate signs, stakes for pollinator garden, water signs.
Hosted by Rachel Haight, please RSVP email@example.com>
Rachel has been experimenting with growing dye plants and preparing dye baths and would like to shared her explorations and knowledge in a free community garden workshop this October.
Participants made dye baths from many garden and collected plant material including, dyer's camomile, rose petals, onion skins, hibiscus, marigold, and turmeric. This is a wonderful alternative to the toxic chemicals used in most commercial fabrics.
It was a fun experience for all with delicious food provided by Rachel and some stunning natural dyed pieces. Stop by the garden to see the results.
We had a very productive and fun work day at the garden with the help of 10 volunteers from the Cal Rotaract Program. The City of Berkeley, through the leadership of Shallon Allen, generously donated 20 bags of decorative mulch, new work gloves, and 3 bags of potting soil. Margaret Shyu, from Cal Rotaract, organized the work crew, with Lawrence, our site leader.
Some of the Garden Improvements:
Please join us in asking the CEO of Lowe’s, Robert Niblock, to show bees some love and stop selling bee-killing pesticides.
Demand the White House Protect our Nation's bees
Tell Congress to support the Save America's Pollinators Act
About 35 people attended a very successful workshop where we learned about native California bees, explored the bees in our garden (more than 12 species identified on the spot), built bee houses for mason bees, and planted a pollinator garden. You can learn more about Jaime's work on her website, Wild Bee Garden Design and more about native bees at the UC Berkeley Urban Bee Lab website. See more pictures of this event in our photo gallery.
1. Native Bees May Help Save Crops:
2. Fish And Wildlife Service Agrees to Phase-Out Genetically Engineered Crops and Ban Bee-Killing Pesticides on National Refuges
3. Possible Connection Between Roundup and Colony Collapse Disorder
4. New tests find bee-killing pesticides in 51% of “bee-friendly” plants from garden centers across U.S. and Canada
5. Pesticides & pollinator decline
6. Neonics: More Evidence of Harm
7. California stung by lawsuit to protect bees
100 high school students were selected to visit and study at UC Berkeley from July 21st to August 10th, 2014. They came from the Great East Japan Earthquake affected prefectures of Iwate, Miyagi, and Fukushima. The students experienced an intensive three-week course on global leadership development and community service. During their stay, they visited Berkeley and painted these colorful labels to identify Ashby Garden plants, and to make Berkeley Pollinator Friendly. See pictures in the Photo Gallery.
Garden member Nora Shourd has been harvesting Ashby Garden produce and produce from the Gil Tract Community Farm for weekly deliveries to Seniors at Soujouner Truth Housing and Phillips Temple. The fresh produce is much enjoyed by the residents. Alice (above, left) is the director at Sojouner Truth.
Comfrey is an important herb in organic gardening, used as a fertilizer and herbal medicine. One name for comfrey is ‘knitbone’, a reminder of its traditional use in healing bone fractures. Modern science confirms that comfrey can influence the course of some types of muscle and joint pain. Comfrey extract is used as a skin treatment. The plant contains allantoin, which is thought to stimulate cell growth while depressing inflammation.
This class was part of the Transition Albany/Berkeley Health Series, taught by Lourdes Gonzaga, a homeopathic practitioner who teaches homeopathy in first aid. See pictures of this event in our photo gallery.