Breaking The Community Garden Stereotype

Raiz de Fond does more than get people digging in the dirt

Set foot onto one of their garden sites, visit their local storefront or attend one of their events, and you’ll realize that Raíz de Fondo doesn’t follow the typical community garden model.

Raíz de Fondo, a non-profit organization based in La Paz, has two garden plots (the Legaspy garden and the Guamuchil garden) that are tended to by volunteers and the few employees they have on staff. Like many community gardens, parcels are available for “adoption,” giving those people without sufficient yard space a chance at growing their own food. Volunteers are available to help guide those that weren’t necessarily born with a green thumb (and thank goodness for that).

Raíz de Fondo hosts a variety of workshops designed for people with all levels of gardening experience, addressing issues specific to La Paz like poor soil quality and water shortages. Their last workshop taught attendees how to make their own biofertilizer from a variety of natural minerals and natural fertilizers (yes, this includes cow poop).

gardening color.jpgBut Raíz de Fondo’s focus goes beyond community gardens. Its goal is to get people to think about their food beyond the table it’s served on. The organization works to provide the tools and knowledge necessary for the community to have access to healthy foods.

If you’re looking to understand how to get more nutritional benefits from your food or incorporate more vegetables into your diet, you can attend of one of their cooking and nutrition classes. They typically host two sessions of the same class in one week to open it up for more attendees

Their most recent cooking class featured bread recipes that included vegetables and fruits, while omitting yeast – making it easier for the novice bread maker. Other classes have featured dishes from various countries along the Mediterranean, including Italy and Greece.

Teachers can bring their students to the garden for an educational visit. They’ll get introduced to the ideas of food gardens, nutrition, and their relationship with the environment, while having a little bit of fun getting their hands dirty. The students also get seeds of their own that they can plant at home.

If you’re looking to relax more than work, yoga sessions are hosted at the Legaspy garden site. And informal workshops held on topics related to food and gardening are also a great opportunity for learning and community building in the garden. These talks often feature guest speakers who have expertise in specific areas.

To learn more about Raiz de Fondo and any of their gardens, classes or events, you can visit their website at www.raizdefondo.org/en/ or email general inquiries to Raizdefondo@gmail. You can also find them on Facebook at facebook.com/RaizDeFondo.