What are the goals of the garden?
Now that you have started thinking about building a garden, some of the first things you should consider are the purpose and goals of the garden. Gather together the people who are interested in creating the garden, and conduct a brainstorming session. This will help you make certain that everyone's needs and ideas have been considered, and that everyone is on the same page. You should consider three types of organizational priorities at your meeting:
- Purpose or Mission
This is a very broad concept of why your garden or gardening organization exists, and can help keep everyone on track. An example could be: "the empowerment of our community."
These are statements describing what your group hopes to accomplish in order to bring it closer to its overall mission. Goals could include: "increased access to fresh produce, increased environmental awareness, and stronger community networks." Dream big!
These are clear tasks that are meant to bring you closer to your goals. These should be short, have deadlines, and be specific to your goals.
Conducting a Brainstorming Session
Download our Brainstorming Session Tools (PDF) to help you facilitate and organize your brainstorming session so that you will get the most out of it. People creating school gardens may also find it useful to print out the Determining Your Goals Worksheet (PDF) developed by School Garden Wizard.
Questions to consider:
- Is there a strong desire and need for a garden?
- What is the purpose of the garden?
- What type of role will the garden play - food production, community building, environmental restoration, beautification, recreation?
- Who will the garden serve - youth, seniors, a special population or the surrounding neighborhood?
- What type of garden would you like to create - vegetable, flower, tree, fruit, herb, or a combination?
- Who are the potential supporters of the garden - businesses, neighbors, schools?
Once you have determined some basic goals for your gardening project, you can begin to build your program team.