Cultivating Community: Community-Supported Agriculture

Through a unique community-supported agriculture program, neighbors in a Boulder, Colorado, subdivision grow fresh, organic food to feed many families.


  • Community Roots' suburban microfarm grows enough food to fuel a CSA, sell at the farmer's market and to donate.
    Photography By Michael Shopenn
  • All sorts of people—volunteers, teachers, pilots, retirees—have become involved with Community Roots' microfarm project.
    Photography By Michael Shopenn
  • In exchange for donating their yards, homeowners receive a share of the produce without doing any work. Other volunteers perform the labor and also get a share.
    Photography By Michael Shopenn
  • Community Roots founder Kipp Nash (right) and volunteer Alex Melinkoff work in on of the group's food gardens.
    Photography By Michael Shopenn
  • Twenty-five CSA member families ride bikes or walk to a church to pick up their weekly share of Community Roots' local, organic foods.
    Photography By Michael Shopenn
  • By growing a variety of vegetables, Community Roots harvests enough food to share with the landowners, including St. Andrew's church, which donated a field.
    Photography By Michael Shopenn
  • Community Roots volunteers sell their homegrown produce at the Boulder County Farmer's Market on Saturdays.
    Photography By Michael Shopenn

Through a unique community-supported agriculture program, neighbors in a Boulder, Colorado, subdivision grow fresh, organic food to feed many families. The antithesis of pesticide-laden,
monocrop agribusiness, the produce—grown in suburban yards—requires little or no fossil fuels to get from farm to table.

Walk along a cluster of streets in Boulder’s Martin Acres subdivision and you’ll find front yards filled with rows of zucchini, tomatoes, eggplants, broccoli, onions, lettuce and arugula. You won’t see a red barn or cows, but a working organic farm lies hidden among the ranch-style and tri-level 1950s and 1960s homes.
 
Thirteen tiny plots scattered throughout neighborhood yards total less than an acre, yet the cobbled-together microfarm feeds about 50 families. This suburban garden is the work of Community Roots, an organization created in 2006 by Kipp Nash, a part-time bus driver. With help from his neighbors and other volunteers, Nash is providing locally grown organic food—and addressing environmental and social issues.

“This program is a beacon of hope that anyone in our neighborhood can access,” Nash says. “People everywhere are aching to connect to their food sources and to each other, but so often next-door neighbors don’t know each others’ names. Community Roots brings it all together.”

Homeowners offer their yards—plots ranging from 600 to 3,500 square feet—and water for irrigation; Community Roots members plant, water, weed and harvest. Every contributor receives a share from the community gardens.



Meet, greet and eat

Nash, a former apprentice at an organic farm, came up with the multiplot urban farm concept in 2005 and took out an ad in the neighborhood newsletter asking for space to garden. “The whole project snowballed when we planted in our next-door neighbors’ front yard,” he says. “Then everyone got curious.”



Subscribe Today - Pay Now & Save 64% Off the Cover Price

Get the latest on Natural Health and Sustainable Living with Mother Earth News!

Mother Earth News

Your friends at Mother Earth Living are committed to natural health and sustainable living. Unfortunately, the financial impact of COVID-19 has challenged us to find a more economical way to achieve this mission. We welcome you to our sister publication Mother Earth News. What you sought in the pages of Mother Earth Living can be found in Mother Earth News. For over 50 years, “The Original Guide to Living Wisely” has focused on organic gardening, herbal medicine, real food recipes, and sustainability. We look forward to going on this new journey with you and providing solutions for better health and self-sufficiency.

The impact of this crisis has no doubt affected every aspect of our daily lives. We will strive to be a useful and inspiring resource during this critical time and for years to come.

Best wishes,
Your friends at Mother Earth Living and Mother Earth News

Save Money & a Few Trees!

By paying with a credit card, you save an additional $5 and get 6 issues of Mother Earth News for only $12.95 (USA only).

You may also use the Bill Me option and pay $17.95 for 6 issues.

Canadian Subscribers - Click Here
International Subscribers - Click Here
Canadian subscriptions: 1 year (includes postage & GST).


Facebook Pinterest Instagram YouTube Twitter

Classifieds