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Community gardens in Portland, OR

A community garden with the St. Johns Bridge in the background

Johns Community Garden comes with a view. | Photo by @phinmcn

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Now that spring has sprung, we’re here to herb your enthusiasm with a guide to community gardens, so your green thumb can shine.

Each year, Portland Parks & Recreation assigns community garden plots March through June, as space is available. The thing is, there’s a lot of interest in getting down and dirty in our city, so your request may land on a waitlist — sometimes, for up to two years. So, besides lots of patience, here’s what you need to know.

Garden plot costs + sizes

  • ADA Accessible Raised Bed (4x8x2 sqft) - $20
  • Starter Plot (approx. 50 sqft) - $20
  • Single Plot (approx. 100 sqft) - $36
  • Standard Plot (approx. 200 sqft) - $66
  • Double Plot (approx. 400 sqft) - $124
  • Quad Plot (approx. 800 sqft) - $220

When you are assigned a plot in spring, you pay the prices above, and then again in November to maintain the space. From there, the fee becomes an annual payment. If you’re unable to afford the cost, scholarship assistance is available. Conversely, you can also donate toward this support fund through the Portland Parks Foundation.


Everyone likes to chloro-feel good. If you’re looking to toil in the soil to reap the mental benefits, there are plenty of volunteer opportunities available. Sign up for group work parties via Hands-On Greater Portland to help with weeding, mulching, planting, pruning, building beds, laying paths, spreading mulch, and more.

Plot holders

Outside the care of their own spaces, plot holders are required to log a minimum of six hours per year on community projects at their garden site.

Produce for People Program

This grassroots program has been providing fresh, nutritious, organic, locally grown food to Portland’s emergency food shelters since 1995. Pitching in has a huge impact — in 2018, 31 community garden sites donated 26,000+ pounds of produce to more than 24 different food pantries.


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