South Florida Community Urban Food HUB

Article by UF/IFAS Extension Broward County Urban Horticulture Agent Lorna Bravo & UF Intern Abraham Cuadrado

Did you know that 15% of the world’s food is grown in urban areas?

From backyard community gardens to vacant lots along highways and rooftops, urban farmers bring people closer to their food in limited spaces. Data Source: USDA.

Did you know families cultivating their own food consume 40% more daily fruits and vegetables? Approximately 25% of Americans maintain backyard gardens, with tomatoes, cucumbers, and sweet peppers being the favored crops. Additionally, community gardens are gaining popularity, and cities across the United States actively encourage collaboration among neighbors to create and nurture shared gardens on public lands.


Community Gardens

In highly dense urban environments, the importance of community gardens cannot be overlooked. As more urbanization spreads, more land is dedicated to developing infrastructure. These remaining green spaces serve vital roles for communities to cultivate native species, cultural exchange, and agricultural literacy. Community gardens can uplift and enhance local areas by fostering a social connection and allowing for a place to bring in a sense of belonging while providing overall mental and physical health benefits. Culturally, community gardens reach audiences of diverse backgrounds, allowing for cultural heritage and traditional knowledge to be exchanged. Overall, these spaces greatly provide the ability for communal collaboration, environmental stewardship, and education 

The Urban Food HUB Pilot Study

Over the past five years, the UF/IFAS Extension Sustainable Urban Food Production Program has taken root in South Florida. Sustainability in Urban Food Production in Broward County – UF/IFAS Extension Broward County ( Driven by community input and stakeholder feedback, this pioneering initiative addresses the critical need for education in urban food production. Specifically, it aims to empower small beginning farmers within the unique context of South Florida.

Our program has actively engaged with the community by visiting and collaborating with multiple community gardens across South Florida. Recognizing the importance of information sharing, we have fostered connections within local growing efforts, including community gardens and urban farms. Through this program, we strive to create a resilient and sustainable food system, nurturing the land and the aspirations of those who cultivate it.


2023 Sustainable Urban Food Program-Community Garden Site Visits




What’s Happening Next?

On April 13, we are hosting a dynamic panel discussion featuring community garden leaders across South Florida. Together, we’ll explore the secrets behind creating and maintaining thriving community gardens in South Florida.

South Florida Community Garden HUB

Why Attend?

  • Locating a Community Garden: Connect with existing local community gardens close to your home.
  • Inspiration: Hear firsthand stories of success and resilience from experienced gardeners.
  • Knowledge Sharing: Learn practical tips and strategies for making community gardens sustainable.
  • Networking: Connect with like-minded individuals who share your passion for green spaces.


Project’s Goal?

Community-Centered & Led Educational Outreach: Working closely with local community members and other stakeholders, the Garden Hub will compile a comprehensive list of horticultural and urban farming practices and resources. This educational effort will empower Broward County residents with knowledge about healthy soil, nutrition, and food justice, contributing to overall community well-being.

Event Registration





Posted: March 15, 2024

Category: Community Volunteers, Conservation, Florida-Friendly Landscaping, Fruits & Vegetables, Horticulture, UF/IFAS Extension, UF/IFAS Research, UF/IFAS Teaching, , Water, Wildlife
Tags: Agroecology, Community, Community Garden, Conservation, Conserve Water, Edible Landscaping, Education, Food Justice, HUB, Soil Health, Sustainability, Urban Horticulture, Volunteers

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