How Green Does Your Urban Garden Grow?


"It's not easy being green," Kermit the Frog famously sang about his trademark pigment. But the same could be said for urban community gardeners, who against many odds, manage to grow nutritious produce in the heart of their cities.

Brooke Budner and Caitlyn Galloway, both 29, diligently tend to a patch of land in San Francisco's Mission district that yields a cornucopia of greens, from arugula, spinach, and fennel to lemon balm and pea shoots. The pair combined their passion for plants with the owner's willingness to let them work the land, which Budner had spied from her then-apartment window. The women take the greens to a nearby restaurant where diners nosh on truly local food.

But, as any urban community garden grower will tell you, there are challenges. Budner and Galloway regularly battle snails, slugs, and unwelcome shade that comes from trying to grow in an area surrounded by buildings. And, of course, there's the lack of available land.