The contributions the Flat Rock Middle Food Forest has made to its community are being recognized with a People’s Garden designation from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA).
The People’s Garden Initiative is part of USDA’s broader efforts to advance equity, support local and regional food systems and access to food, and encourage use of conservation and climate-smart practices. It recognizes school gardens, community gardens, urban farms, and small-scale agriculture projects in rural, suburban, and urban areas if they register with the USDA and meet criteria including benefitting the community, working collaboratively, incorporating conservation practices, and educating the public.
People’s Gardens grow fresh, healthy food and support resilient, local food systems; teach people how to garden using conservation practices; nurture habitat for pollinators and wildlife and create greenspace for neighbors.
“We welcome gardens nationwide to join us in the People’s Garden effort and all it represents,” said U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack, “Local gardens across the country share USDA’s goals of building more diversified and resilient local food systems, empowering communities to come together around expanding access to healthy food, addressing climate change and advancing equity.”