Rent a plot or volunteer
Make a donation
We happily accept financial donations (thank you) and some gardens may need things like building materials for raised beds or fencing, clean soil, mulch, plants or seeds. To make a donation, please choose a location on the map and contact the garden coordinator directly.
To start a new community garden on City-owned property
The City’s community garden coordinator can guide you through the application process and help with things like permits, agreements, insurance and soil testing. If your application is approved, the City will till the garden area, and donate a few supplies to get you started.
Guelph’s community garden coordinators meet once a month to discuss challenges, share success stories, and continue supporting Guelph’s community garden network.
You need at least six people in your garden group
Assign a garden coordinator and a backup coordinator. Garden group volunteers cover cost of:
- Building and maintaining the community garden
- Liability insurance, initial soil quality testing
- Inviting other gardeners to join
Choosing a location
The City will work with you or your garden group community group to find a suitable location:
- Six metres from surrounding amenities, property lines, hedgerows and trees and 60 centimetres from the nearest trail
- Gets six hours of sunlight each day
- Water available nearby either:
- an existing City water service
- harvested from the roof of a nearby building and stored in rain barrels or cisterns
- Away from sports fields and other uses
- Doesn’t interfere with drainage or site maintenance
- Little to no slope
Planning the garden
Please submit a garden site plan that includes:
- Plot sizes and layout
- Pathways and what they’re made of
- Compost bins, rain barrels and other structures
The City can offer advice and help your garden group apply for funding to help make the garden more accessible. Things like crushed gravel pathways and raised beds can make the garden more welcoming for everyone.
The City will help you discuss your plans with people living or working nearby. This may include surveys and neighbourhood meetings; ideally at the proposed location for the community garden.
Submit your application
Please complete and send your community garden application by October 31. If we’re able to meet all the necessary requirements, the City will send all approvals and permits to your garden group by May 31 and we can get growing!
To start a community garden on non-City property
The City can also help you work with other property owners like to find a suitable spot for a community garden. First, ask the property owner if they would like to host a community garden, then contact the City.
For more information
Community garden coordinator