Garden Details

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Garden Information

Main details about this community garden

Garden Name
Down to Earth Garden
Garden Address
546 E 12th St, New York, NY 10009
Cross Streets
12th St & Ave B southwest corner
Garden by Street
12th Street
Garden Established

Garden Communications

Garden contact info.: email, website, social media, etc.

Garden Email
contact AT
Garden Email List(s)
Group email (sending-replying by list members allowed), Group text

Garden Contact Person

The main contact person for this garden

Display Name Shig M.

Backup Garden Contact Person

OPTIONAL - The backup contact person for this garden

Display Name Backup N/A

Additional Garden Details

OPTIONAL. However, information that could be important (details below can be added/edited later via a private link provided after submission of this form).

Garden Mission
The purpose of the garden is to provide a working model for recycling organic matter, including food waste, that improves and sustains the garden environment from microbes to plants, from insects to birds; therefore, to also provide the community a 24-hour drop-off site for food scraps and other organic matter (plant and potting matter) and make the compost, as well as other materials when available (soil, mulch), for people to take with them; and to provide a place for anyone interested in learning and volunteering in our garden activities, including for schools and after school activities/clubs to be able to bring their students to plant, harvest their plantings, and/or do composting activities.
Garden Description

See Down to Earth Garden’s About page:

Open Hours Season
April 1 - Oct. 31
Open Hours

Tuesdays 1:30 – 4 pm
Sundays 10 am – 1 pm
Updated occasionally on

Membership Information

Membership webpage:

Garden Plots
No, Common Areas Only
Garden Size
1261 sq ft
Garden Features

Large worm compost bins (one 10′ x 3′ x 1.5′ worm bed; two compost bins in process of being built).

Metal shed (10′ x 5′)

Rain barrels (2) set on cinderblocks to allow tapping water into watering cans; one rain barrel with mosquito net lid (allows rain in, prevents mosquitos).

Access to water from next door park (Sauer Park, a children’s playground).

Gardening Area

Perimeter of the garden, within fence and wall, about 3 feet wide bed for plantings, including bulbs planted by Pre-K kids during the fall. Other plants include a rose, Blue Damson Plum Tree, young flowering dogwood, fig tree, and goji berry plant.

A round growing bed (about 5 feet wide) with various flowers and a young Blue Damson Plum Tree (a transplanted volunteer from the 25 year-old tree in the perimeter bed (in the southeast corner).

Currently no raised bed (previously dismantled, 2020-2021, due to the wood rotting away and falling apart, and rat burrowing through the broken planks).

Yes, Public drop-off, Limited hours
Composting Details

See the following composting details:

Regular Garden Activities

Composting, bokashi composting, rat harassment, and tree care (including spraying EM-5, an organic recipe for foliar applications, against the cedar rust fungal disease).

Garden Trees

Bartlett Pear Tree, 2 Blue Damson Plum Trees, Sweetgum Tree, Flowering Dogwood Tree, and 1 unknown tree.

Street trees include 3 Kentucky Coffee Trees.

Garden History on Website
Garden Bylaws on Website
Garden Rules on Website
Garden Guidelines on Website
Active During Winter Season

Yes. Active during the winter: composting, tree pruning, mulching, leaf drop-off collection, rat harassment, and other garden maintenance.

Sunlight Profile

No sunlight profile currently available.

Neighbors and Relations

Children’s Workshop School, located 1/2 block away, Pre-K children plant about 100 bulbs, and other plants, every fall.

Relations with next door park, Joseph C. Sauer Park (a children’s playground with tree lined landscape); along with El Sol Brillante community garden (on the other side of Sauer Park), we help to take care of the tree landscape, including providing amended soil from our bokashi composting process; the City Parks Foundation purchased the metal shed (10′ x 5′) for us in 2018; they also made it possible for our garden (as well as, El Sol Brillante) to have access to the water from Sauer Park after the renovation of the park (2021).

El Sol Brillante community garden – overlapping garden members; composting is a combined bokashi composting system between the two gardens; along with various grants, ESB provides funding for various garden projects (since at least 2010).