Driven by escalating food and gas prices, the need for ecological sustainability and improved access to fresh produce, Syracuse community members are getting serious about community gardening and urban agriculture. Urban gardens reduce household food budgets, bring neighbors together, beautify vacant lots and blighted neighborhoods, increase access to fresh produce, and decrease our “food miles.”

In Syracuse, a number of successful projects and programs, including the community gardens, work tirelessly on improving the local food system. What is lacking, as many leaders in these projects and programs have noted, is collaboration of stakeholder group to assist existing community gardens and expand urban agriculture throughout the City of Syracuse. Most Upstate New York Cities already have well-established urban gardening programs that produce 1000s of pounds of produce annually for community members and emergency food programs. To help Syracuse achieve its urban agriculture potential, a new network has emerged. Syracuse Grows is a grassroots network working to cultivate a just foodscape in the City of Syracuse.

Syracuse Grows pledges to build local capacity for urban agriculture and community gardening by providing programming, education and resources to Syracuse residents interested in urban food cultivation.