Sarasota County is robust with green growing spaces. And, they’ve become easier to find and explore, with our new gardens story map.
The story map—an online, interactive tool— showcases the demonstration and community gardens in our extension program. The tool highlights a range of gardens located at Sarasota County libraries and parks, sharing a little of the history behind these spaces, the types of plants growing there, and more. Use this tool to help plan (and navigate) your next garden adventure.
Demonstration gardens are open during regular hours of operation for their library or park location. You can find the hours and location amenities in the story map. Maybe you’ll extend your visit by packing a picnic or opt to check out a gardening book.
Note that while community gardens are easily visible at locations noted in the story map, entry to the gardens generally is limited to members only, since these are allotment gardens where members grow vegetables at their own expense. Entry to the public is available during special events, like garden open houses and educational workshops. These are usually hosted during the fall through spring growing seasons. If you have a group of people interested in touring a community garden, we recommend contacting us to inquire about a scheduled tour.
These garden spaces are wonderful community amenities for people, of course. But, they also provide an amazing biodiversity of plants, insects and wildlife. And there’s an amazing array of partners involved in preparing and maintaining these spaces and that biodiversity.
While using the story map, you’ll discover some of the community resources that support the gardens, like the Friends of Sarasota County Parks, Sarasota County’s Neighborhood Services division, Friends of the Library (groups supporting county public libraries), and Master Gardener Volunteers. These spaces continue to thrive not only because of the community that created them but due to the many special people that steward their care over time. After all, three of our seven community gardens have been growing for more than 20 years!
To learn more about these special places, and to map your next garden adventure…check out our free story map tool!
Source: UF/IFAS Pest Alert
Note: All images and contents are the property of UF/IFAS.