Community Gardens Help Grow Healthy Communities

community gardens and ron finely
Community gardens can be simple ways to build communities, provide good food for them and be therapeutic all at the same time.

It doesn’t matter where the community is either. This TED presentation by Ron Finely is about his work growing community gardens in South Los Angeles, an area filled with liquor stores, fast food joints and vacant lots, as he describes it.

Here is an excerpt describing the problem as he sees it:

“Just like 26.5 million other Americans, I live in a food desert, South Central Los Angeles, home of the drive-thru and the drive-by. Funny thing is, the drive-thrus are killing more people than the drive-bys. People are dying from curable diseases in South Central Los Angeles. For instance, the obesity rate in my neighborhood is five times higher than, say, Beverly Hills, which is probably eight, 10 miles away.”

Community Gardens bring people together

But he brings people of all walks of life together to make where they live a better place. This is an inspirational talk and extremely timely as we see health problems increase exponentially in the US.

Here’s another excerpt:

“So what happened? I have witnessed my garden become a tool for the education, a tool for the transformation of my neighborhood. To change the community, you have to change the composition of the soil. We are the soil. You’d be surprised how kids are affected by this. Gardening is the most therapeutic and defiant act you can do, especially in the inner city. Plus you get strawberries.”

Watch Ron Finley: A guerilla gardener in South Central LA and share this with your friends on Facebook and with anyone who wants to build a better community.

And if you really want to get your hands dirty building community gardens in Yelm, drop an email to with “gardens” in the subject line and we’ll get you started!