Our Vision, Mission & Values
Our vision is to create a stronger, healthier, more vibrant Tucson through our community gardens and partnerships.
Our mission is to build community gardens where Tucsonans grow food, work and learn together, and nurture well-being in our communities.
We share, learn, and grow with one another: this is the heart of community gardening.
Everyone is welcome
We commit to community gardening that is equitable, inclusive and accessible to all people regardless of race, color, ethnicity, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, family status or ability. We are equally committed to doing everything we can to help eliminate bias, discrimination, and intolerance in our gardens.
We create shared gardening experiences that bring enjoyment, friendships, and a greater sense of community.
Sustaining The Environment
We use natural methods that help protect and preserve our environment and benefit ecosystems through organic gardening practices, creating pollinator habitats, and conserving water.
Improve Food Resiliency
We enable Tucsonans and their families to increase healthy food access by growing and producing food together.
Generation To Generation
We create a space for sharing knowledge, cultures, and traditions between generations of gardeners.
In 1990, George Brookbank, a University of Arizona Cooperative Extension agent, and Darlene Schacht, a Master Gardener, together created a program to teach gardening using hands-on experience. When George retired in 1995, the new County Agent decided to disconnect from the gardens and the City of Tucson decided it wasn’t interested, so Community Gardens of Tucson was formed as an independent organization by Darlene and George.
Our first garden was created on a vacant lot near 1st Avenue and Limberlost, donated by the Hand family. The plots were rented by participating families for the cost of water.
Interest in the community was high and by 1997 there were six gardens in the CGT world, each with a site coordinator and connections to their neighborhood. All worked with and learned from George and Darlene.
In 1995 George Brookbank, with the help of dedicated master gardeners, formed the Community Gardens of Tucson as an independent, volunteer organization. And in 2009, CGT became a 501 (c)(3) Arizona nonprofit corporation, with Darlene as incorporator, and George and two gardeners as the initial board of directors.
More than thirty years later, CGT is a growing nonprofit. We currently have 17 gardens throughout the city being cared for by more than 300 gardeners. We support ourselves through plot fees (dependent on ability to pay) and donations from generous supporters.
Start a New Garden
Start a New Garden
Contact Us For More Information
Community Gardens of Tucson works in partnership with neighborhoods, churches, government agencies and private entities to develop new community gardens. CGT can provide technical assistance and guidance for the construction of new gardens. CGT will manage new gardens if they meet specific criteria:
Land must be available for the garden, free of charge and for a period no less than 5 years.
The property must be relatively flat with few trees and enough space to site a minimum of 16 (3’ x 20’) garden beds.
There must be strong community support for the new garden evidenced by a list of people committed to gardening in the new garden.
The neighborhood or community must raise a significant portion of the cost of the new garden and must provide willing and able volunteers to build the garden.
The garden must be open to the public and not limited to a specific group or membership.
If your group or organization can meet these criteria, please contact us to discuss building a new community garden in your neighborhood.
Contact Us For More Information
Community Gardens of Tucson acknowledges that the lands on which we garden are the traditional, ancestral and unceded territories of the Hohokam, the Tohono O’odham and the Pascua Yaqui peoples who have been living and farming on this land for thousands of years.
We are grateful to learn from the desert farming practices these Indigenous peoples have developed through the centuries.
We recognize the historical injustices perpetrated on Indigenous people and that colonialism is still an ongoing process and are mindful of our own participation.
We honor and celebrate the cultures and contributions of the Indigenous people of the Tucson Basin.
On December 18, 2009, the Community Gardens of Tucson was incorporated in the state of Arizona. Important documents:
- CGT Articles of Incorporation
- CGT By-Laws
- Conflict of Interest Policy for CGT 2009
- Non Discrimination Policy
- IRS Tax Exempt Status Approval 2010
- 2019 Federal and AZ Tax Returns
- 2020 Annual Report
- 2020 Form 990
- Our Current Programs
- Commitment to Inclusion
- Community Gardens of Tucson 2022 Impact Report
The Community Gardens of Tucson welcomes inquiries about activities in our gardens.
Media inquiries should be send to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Community Gardens of Tucson
5049 E Broadway, Suite 300
Tucson, AZ 85711
CGT recognizes the historical injustices perpetrated upon the Indigenous people of the Tucson Basin. We honor and celebrate the cultures and contributions of those whose land we now garden on.