Photo by Jocelyn Hsu

Campus Gardens

UC Berkeley is home to over ten urban gardens that produce food, preserve native ecosystems, increase biodiversity and create cultural and community space. We believe that gardens on our campus have the opportunity to play a unique role in the landscape of urban agriculture: creating micro scale food systems that address student food insecurity; offering spaces for experiential education; increasing food and food system literacy; expanding opportunities to interact with land and food; adapting urban greening to urban typologies and aesthetics; facilitating interdisciplinary research, collaboration and land use decision making. Campus gardens create unique spaces for our community to interact with nature, agriculture, food and each other.

Undergraduate and graduate students, staff and faculty are involved in the design, implementation, maintenance and programming of urban gardens alongside faculty, staff, gardeners and community. 

Gardens and Basic Needs: We see the connection between urban agriculture and student food security and nutrition. Many of our gardens harvest food for the campus food pantry and nutrition and cooking skills programs. For more information on how gardens’ produce supports Basic Needs, check out the Basic Needs website.

Gardens and Equity: Our conventional food systems are harmful to farmworkers and their communities and we’ve seen the urban agriculture movement struggle with equity and diversity. We are proactively working on equity in our gardens and to uplift and empower a diversity of cultural connections to food and land.

Learn more about experiential learning in food and agriculture across the UC system here.

Map of UC Berkeley Campus Gardens
Map by Tiger Fu.

Ways To Get Involved:

From visiting, volunteer days and workshops to regular volunteering, decals, course projects, internships, and paid work-study there are many ways to get involved in our campus gardens. See below for various ways to get involved, specific information about different gardens, reports from past research and design projects and recommended future projects. If you have any questions, comments or concerns please contact our campus gardens coordinator, Meg Prier (megprier@berkeley.edu).

Visit

Visit

All of our gardens are open to visitors. Some are always open and some have specific open hours

Always open: Sustainable Campus Decal, Clark Kerr Garden, Multicultural Community Center Garden, Central Campus landscape, Campus Natural Areas

UC Gill Tract Community Farm: Open Sun 12-5pm, Mon 11-2pm, Tue  2-5pm, Wed 1-2pm, Thu 2-5pm, Sat 10-2pm

SOGA open hours: Sundays, 10am-2pm

Golden Garden: open by request

UC Botanical Garden: Open 9-5 M-F year round

Blake Garden: 8-4.30 M-F year round

Attend a Workshop

Attend a Workshop

See upcoming events here. 

Here is a snapshot of different events and workshops held at our gardens in the past:

  • Basic Gardening Skills Workshop: April 24th and 25th 2018 (will be offered every semester)
  • SOGA: Kombucha and salve making, intro to organic gardening, pickling, fruit tree grafting, film screenings
  • Clark Kerr: Herbal Tea Tabling, sheet mulching, pruning, fruit tree planting, grafting
  • UCGTCF: Monthly farm parties, Earth Day and Harvest celebrations, biomass, soils, seed gathering, medicinal herb workshops, beginning urban farmer workshops  

Volunteer

Volunteer

All of our spaces are open to volunteers! Come visit during open hours

Sustainable Campus Decal: Contact Will (wmsmith15@berkeley.edu)

Clark Kerr Garden: Tue and Thu 10am-12pm

Multicultural Community Center Garden: Contact Rajelin (rajelin@berkeley.edu)

UC Gill Tract Community Farm:Open Sun 12-5pm, Mon 11-2pm, Tue  2-5pm, Wed 1-2pm, Thu 2-5pm, Sat 10-2pm

SOGA open hours: Sundays, 10am-2pm

Golden Garden: open by request

UC Botanical Garden: Open 9-5 M-F year round

Blake Garden: 8-4.30 M-F year round

Take a Decal

Take a Decal

Sustainable Campus Decal (contact Will Smith; wmsmith15@berkeley.edu)

SOGA Fall: Berkeley Urban Gardening Internship (BUGI); contact studentorganicgarden@gmail.com

SOGA Fall: Garden Leadership and Management; contact studentorganicgarden@gmail.com

SOGA Spring: Food Justice through Urban Gardening; contact studentorganicgarden@gmail.com

UCGTCF: Has offered a decal in the past. Watch the website for upcoming courses

Intern

Intern

Berkeley Unified School District Gardens and Cooking Internships:

Basic Needs Internship: Internship offered through Ethnic Studies to support how harvest from the gardens gets to the Basic Needs pantry and other services

Food Systems Minor Capstone and Internship

Paid Positions

Paid Positions

SOGA

UCGTCF Fellows

Cal Dining

Basic Needs Coordinator

Research and Capstone Projects

Research and Capstone Projects

Possible Site Specific Design or Research Projects

  • Ohlone Garden – Wurster Courtyard
  • Tang Center – Healing Medicinal and Nutrition
  • Chancellor’s Garden
  • Edible landscaping by Foothill
  • Temporary food demos
  • Wellman Hall Pollinator Garden
  • Public Health and Education Garden
  • Herbicide free campus landscaping
  • Human Rights Center Garden
  • Vertical Garden at Cafe Think
  • Edible native landscaping – Observatory Hill

 

Design & Planning Projects

  • Integrating edible production with other ecosystem services: flood control, air and water pollution treatment, etc.
  • Adapting agriculture to urban typologies: designs for vertical gardens, rooftop gardens, etc.

 

Data Collection Projects

  • Environmental health of campus: soil quality, air quality, water quality, biodiversity, native plants, climate change resilience (flooding, drought, etc.)
    • Creating a platform to centralize and map data collected

Existing Gardens:

Campus Landscape Sustainable Decal

Campus Landscape Sustainable Decal

What? Several plots on central campus where students teach other students how to grow food in urban setting, how to assess and analyze the land we have and experiment with what could grow. All food grown is taken by volunteers or taken to the campus food pantry.

How? Visit the space and hang out, volunteer, join the decal

When? The space is always open to visitors. Volunteers are welcome during workdays X to X. Join the decal at the start of every semester.

Contact: Will Smith; wmsmith15@berkeley.edu

Clark Kerr Garden

Clark Kerr Garden

What? The Chef’s garden at Clark Kerr is a small raised bed garden by the dining hall that produces a variety of herbs, fruits and vegetables for the campus food pantry and workshops in the dining hall. The space is maintained as a collaboration between Cal Dining and RSSP Grounds.

How? Open hours, workshops, managers

Follow: facebook.com/ClarkKerrGarden

The Student Organic Garden

The Student Organic Garden

What? Educational space for organic urban agriculture and self-sufficiency. Manage and led by undergraduates.

How? Open hours, decals, workshops, managers

Follow: facebook.com/soga.garden/

UC Gill Tract Community Farm

UC Gill Tract Community Farm

What? Community-University farm centered on local, organic, agro-ecological farming practices.

Where? Gill Tract, Albany by UC Village

How? Open hours, decals, workshops, fellows

Follow: https://www.gilltractfarm.org/

Multicultural Community Center Garden

Multicultural Community Center Garden

What? The MCC has developed a balcony container garden outside of their center for community, education and food production.

How? Contact the MCC (Rajelin: rajelin@berkeley.edu) to get more involved with their garden committee.

Follow: campusclimate.berkeley.edu/students/ejce/mcc/programs/garden

People's Park Garden

People's Park Garden

What? People’s Park has had a community garden sign it began in 1969. This space continues as a community space and is currently being revitalized.

How? Contact Darin Bauer, Darinallenbauer@yahoo.com

Golden Garden

Golden Garden

What? Orchard and hillside ecological restoration on the backside of Clark Kerr campus.

How? Volunteer days, research, course projects

Blake Garden

Blake Garden

What? 10.6 acre garden supporting landscape architecture and environmental planning.

Where? Kensington, CA

How? Open hours (8-4.30 M-F), interns, projects

Follow: http://blakegarden.ced.berkeley.edu/

Strawberry Creek Natural Areas

Strawberry Creek Natural Areas

What? Native restoration of Strawberry Creek and other natural areas; site for education and research.

Where? West of Valley Life Sciences building

What? Volunteer days, interns, research

Follow: http://strawberrycreek.berkeley.edu/

UC Botanical Garden

UC Botanical Garden

What? 34 acre botanical garden with a diverse living collection, teaching and worldwide research.

Where? Strawberry Canyon, H or Perimeter Line

How? Open (9-5 M-F) – free for students, workshops, research, internships and volunteer.

Follow: http://botanicalgarden.berkeley.edu/

UC Village Community Garden and Inspire Plot

UC Village Community Garden and Inspire Plot

What? The Garden provides space for UC students, faculty and staff to rent a plot and grow their own organic produce. The Inspire Plot is a community plot for beginning gardeners.

Where? Albany, West of the UC Village Housing

How? Sign up for a plot or to be a part of the Inspire Plot! (must attend a new gardener orientation first)

Follow: ucvillagegarden.net/

Herbicide Free Campus Campaign

Herbicide Free Campus Campaign

What? A cohort of students, led by several volleyball players are working to transition UC Berkeley to an herbicide free campus. (link to 2017 Daily Cal article)

How? Contact Mackenzie for more information (mfeldman@berkeley.edu)

Berkeley Student Cooperative Gardens

Berkeley Student Cooperative Gardens

What? Many of the student coops have gardens from Cloyne’s large urban agriculture focused gardens to Caza Zimbabwe’s rooftop succulent garden.

How? For more information contact the house garden manager.

Oxford Tract

Oxford Tract

What? The Oxford Tract research field hosts graduate research and several CNR courses over the course of the year that often grow edible produce. The Oxford Tract community often hosts Friday harvests and other community events. The Oxford Tract is also currently at risk for housing development.

How? Courses, workshops, events

Follow: plantandmicrobiology.berkeley.edu/oxford-tract and ocf.berkeley.edu/~soga/wordpress/?page_id=312

Garden Design Projects:

There have been many garden design projects from students and courses across departments. This section offers a summary of each of these projects and recommendations for how they can be continued. Each project has a brief description and link to a final report or presentation. Please contact megprier@berkeley.edu for more information about any of them.