Our mission is to teach our community to produce food sustainably by growing healthy soil. Common Ground Garden is both a demonstration garden for the GROW BIOINTENSIVE® (GB) method, as well as a teaching space for both youth and adults.
Common Ground is a project of Ecology Action, whose mission is to “teach people worldwide to better feed themselves while building and preserving the soil and conserving resources.” Palo Alto Christian Reformed Church owns the land and graciously allows Common Ground to steward the property. Under the direction of John Jeavons, author of How to Grow More Vegetables, Common Ground serves the Bay Area as a teaching garden sharing Ecology Action’s GB method of sustainable farming. We take a soil-building approach to growing food, ensuring a good harvest for generations to come. Visitors can learn more by taking self-guided tour of Common Ground, enrolling in adult classes or by volunteering at the garden.
Students of all ages–from pre-k through high school–visit the garden to learn about eating well for themselves, for the environment, and for the people who produce their food. Through experiential lessons, they connect with natural cycles, get their hands dirty, and witness the growth of delicious, seasonal produce from seed to plate. They develop an appreciation for crop varieties as well as an awareness of their part in stewarding the ecosystem.
Our students visit the garden to study a wide range of academic subjects, from science to culinary arts, from the Spanish language to history. Some classes come for one-time field trips, while others visit the garden for a series of visits about a specific subject, and some even visit us throughout the school year.
We also support several of the local school gardens through growing advice and planning.
And, if you want a quick tour of the Common Ground, click on the video below.