Welcome to the Ithaca Community Gardens, a program of Project Growing Hope!

Project Growing Hope is a not-for-profit membership organization devoted to furthering community food self-sufficiency. Our main project is the Ithaca Community Gardens. As a member you can choose to maintain your own garden plot; use the garden tools, manure, and compost; take part in and organize educational workshops and social events; and help maintain the shared community spaces in the Gardens. And of course there’s the opportunity to learn and share with a community of friendly gardeners! There are also many opportunities to get involved in community events. Check out our events calendar below for upcoming garden events.

2017 Wait List

New to the Community Gardens? To put your name on the wait list for either a fall 2017 garden plot, or a 2018 plot click here. As of 10/12/17 there is at least one abandoned plot available as fall plots, and some people are joining the wait list for spring 2018. If you’re interested in rehabilitating an abandoned plot, preparing a fall plot for next season, or would just like to be sure to get a plot next spring, please sign up now!

Upcoming 2017 Workdays

Last workday of the season Saturday, October 28, from 10–noon
We still need a volunteer to organize a mid-October “alternate” workday (Sunday afternoon or a weekday evening).

During gardening season (April to October), workdays are held the last Saturday of every month from 9 am to noon (see dates above). Everyone who is able is encouraged to attend as many of these workdays as possible, to share the work and join the fun.

“ALTERNATE” WORKDAYS: one non-Saturday mid-month workday per month, time & dates announced here as they’re scheduled(One Sunday a month from 3–5 pm during May, Sept and October, and one weekday evening a month during the hotter months of June to August.)

STILL NEED TO MAKE UP 2016 WORK HOURS? The deadline to complete these work hours was extended to June 30. We’ll billing for any hours due unless you’ve made a plan with Karen & started doing the work on your own. Suggested jobs: sift & bag finished compost on highway side, bundle brush outside of railroad-side fence, clear weeds from fences. Contact president@ithacacommunitygardens.org if you have any questions. FRIENDLY REMINDER: starting 2017, work hours must be done in the year they are owed; to renew plots in 2018, any owed work hours must be paid at the rate of $15/hour.

Gardening News

  • CALENDARS for SALE: Preorders are being accepted now for the beautiful calendar that resulted from our first annual gardener photo contest. Click here to place your preorder; calendars will be ready by early November for purchase and pickup. See here for more detail.

  • ANNUAL MEMBER MEETING: the annual meeting to elect new board members and review the state of the Gardens will be Nov. 8 from 6:10 to 8:30 (social time from 6:10-6:30), at the Friends’ Meeting House (120 3rd St., at the corner of Madison and 3rd Street, see map here: http://ithacamonthlymeeting.org/directions). Please make every effort to attend, proxy ballots will be available upon request if you want to vote for new board members and can’t attend, contact president@ithacacommunitygardens.org 

  • LAND/PERMANENCY MEETINGS: Gardeners interested in working on the land/permanency issue, the next meeting is Tuesday 10/24, 7:30 to 9:00 pm in the Henry St. John Building, (corner of Geneva & Clinton, use south entrance by the playground). 

  • MEETINGS: There won’t be another board meeting until early December, exact date will be determined by the newly-convened board! Once that meeting occurs the regular monthly board meeting time will be announced. Gardeners are welcome to attend board meetings, advance notice is helpful. Meeting minutes are available upon request from RonLiso@ithacacommunitygardens.org.

  • DONATE EXCESS VEGGIES: bag them & leave in coolers by our garden sheds by 6:30 pm every Wednesday & Sunday. We are a drop-off location for produce for the Food Donation Network. Many gardeners make weekly food donations to the community through this program.

  • The Hidden Impacts of the Ithaca Community Gardens (PDF) Excerpted recently in the Ithaca Times, see here.

  • SPECIAL JOBS available. Brush trimming, poison ivy elimination, compost screening & bagging. Tidy the Gardens “face” along Rte. 13. For more detail, please email president@ithacacommunitygardens.org  

  • WHEN DO i WATER MY PLOT? Check this water deficit calculator frequently for whether you need to water (provided by Cornell’s CSF – Climate Smart Farming Program) 

  • ANNUAL AGWAY GIFT CARD RAFFLE: the raffle drawing was held on June 24, 2017, it was won by a member of the Ithaca community, not a community gardener this year. We’ll have an update on how close we came to meeting our $500 fundraising goal soon.


  • How to Deal with BINDWEED in the Gardens

  • Tompkins Weekly article on the Gardens on p. 7 of the May 22, 2017 issue. Read about about Fallen Tree Center for a Resilient Future, a fellow community organization in the Northeast of Ithaca that includes small community garden plots: blog post, article.


  • Commemorating former gardener AUNG HTOO (March 1, 1979 – June 4, 2017)

  • Chao-Fu Cheng (February 18, 1942 – March 17, 2015) Commemoration Page – Includes video from Open Garden Days Dedication