What We Do
Our current projects in Sedona and the Verde Valley of central Arizona include assisting in the development of home and community gardens, school gardens, art and environmental education and being a resource for the development of local agriculture and sustainable food systems. In all these areas we strive to help people of all ages develop the skills, awareness and desire to grow food and care for the environment. Learn more about our current projects.
- Sedona Winds Assisted Living Accessible Garden
- School Gardens in Sedona and the Verde Valley
- Celebrating the Art in Earth – Art & Environmental Education
- Greening Harmony – Home and community garden project
- Greening Seeds at Red Rock High School
- The Peace Garden at the Sedona Creative Life Center
- Community Gardens
- Sustainability education and Teacher Training
We realize that public gardens bring a deep authentic sense of place to us and provide space to celebrate life. For all of time artists, poets, musicians, dancers and story tellers have been inspired by life-giving gardens to express what speaks to them and are the creative bridge between nature and community. Gardens open us to beauty, serenity and peace all around us; and to physical and spiritual awareness, nourishment, and health.
At the heart of our task is education to help bring a sustainable community into being, to give our children and all members of our community the values, tools, understanding, leadership skills, and experiences we need to seek and regain balance with the natural world
Our objective is to set a framework for integration of environmental education into school and experiential curriculum focusing on academic achievement, a healthy lifestyle, environmental and community stewardship and social development.
Gardens for Humanity assists with school gardens throughout our community from site evaluation, to building the school team, to developing the garden, to helping teachers with learning resources aligned with state and national standards across the curriculum. Learn more.
Celebrating the Art in Earth – Art and Environmental Education
This program is central to our mission and serves as a model for how we develop other educational programs tied to school gardens. We provide activities that connect children to the environment, to develop awareness of where food comes from, and to give children the tools to make healthier choices for themselves and the environment. Art, as the means of environmental and garden education, helps students develop greater self-expression, creativity, experimentation, problem solving, in addition to enhancing their emotional relationship, appreciation and sense of responsibility towards the natural world. Learn more.
Currently under development, this program will teach and mentor youth in principles and practices of: gardening and sustainable food systems design and operation, including bio-regional strengths, local seed and food sovereignty and security; green building with initial attention to basic home energy audits, energy conservation, and efficiency; leadership for personal development and growth for community sustainability, well-being and survival, ground this in local bio-regional Earth-centric cultural traditions and wisdom — “All of Relations…the Land is the Teacher….the Land is the Leader…” Learn more.
Community Education Workshops
Through plants and trees, every subject, every walk of life is addressed. Plants have influenced human civilizations since the beginning. In recent generations many of us have forgotten our relationship with plants, how to cultivate and nurture a garden. Gardens for Humanity offers workshops designed to reconnect us to the earth through learning how to plan, prepare, plant and carefully tend a garden all season long. Teachings also address irrigation, fertilizing, pest protection and harvesting. Learn more.
Gardens for Humanity works to restore and vitalize the Verde Valley as the ‘breadbasket’ of Northern Arizona raising and distributing local food to regional markets and restaurants.
For well over 1000 years, people have raised abundant crops of grain, fruit, vegetables and medicinal herbs in the Verde Valley. First the Native peoples, then more recently the territorial pioneers each giving their descendants a self-reliant “basic foods” legacy and exporting surpluses throughout northern Arizona. Indeed, it has only been the past sixty years that the valley’s fields have become underutilized so that much of our food comes from thousands of miles away, an unsustainable situation. Our goal is to help develop relationships between farmers, consumers, restaurants, and grocers and other resources so that gradually the Verde Valley will become more self-sustaining.
Visionaries — Gardeners of the Spirit
Until 2010, each year we tell the stories of some extraordinary individuals, leaders of courage, wisdom and vision. They help people around them to care for each other and reconnect families and communities with the earth and living creatures.
Gardeners of the Spirit are people of courage and vision. Through creating gardens and art, they help us to grow and respect our relationships. They rebuild family and community and reconnect us to ourselves, to one another and to the earth. By their example, Gardeners of the Spirit re-awaken our innate compassion for children, for our own beauty and the beauty of this Earth.
Art in Gardens
When one creates a garden, one defines a sacred space that becomes a place for nurturing life. The human interaction with the forces of nature in a garden setting evoke the creative spirit. Gardens are made for nourishment and beauty. Art is a human effort to participate in creation and to express beauty and life. Gardens for Humanity was founded on the basis of this relationship of art and gardens, and it continues to be a guiding principle.