UGI is a local Urban Gardening Initiative in Muncie and Delaware County, networking resources and community to encourage more local urban food production.
Did you know that Muncie and Delaware County has an impressive and fascinating past of surviving by means of community gardening?
According to the book "Delaware County in the World War":
"Muncie and Delaware County held first place in the Nation in the demonstration in most effective fashion of the practical side of the food substitution and conservation program. In 1918, for example, 7,050 war gardens were planted in the county. School gardens in 1918 numbered 18, each containing one-sixtieth of an acre, or twenty-one acres in all. Vacant lot and other gardens numbered 5,790, comprising 684 acres. A total of 705 acres were cultivated by loyal gardeners, old and young. Boys and girls to the number of 1,948 enrolled for the movement."
Below are some historical articles backing up this history from the Muncie Sunday Star, the Chicago Tribune and other reports that a Ball State Graduate and UGI Gardener, Bryan Preston, found while doing research for his thesis. Click on the links below to read scanned PDF's. Due to age, they are not the most readable formats but can still be viewed.
munciesundaystarp17_plangardens.pdf (1/25/1931- "Plan Gardens for the Needy")
chicagotribune19310821p17_gardensmuncie.pdf (8/21/1931- "Gardens Solve Food Problem for the Needy")
1943_victorygardenreport.pdf (Victory Garden Committee Report, 1943)
businessweek19340526_middletown1.pdf (05/26/1934- Middletown-Ten Years After I)
businessweek19340602_middletown2.pdf (6/02/1934- Middletown- Ten Years After II)
businessweek19340609_middletown3.pdf (6/09/1934- Middletown- Ten Years After III)
To support such a unique tradition of community gardening and to address the tough economic issues our community is faced with, Muncie-Delaware Clean & Beautiful has created a network of local gardens and gardeners to help build a stronger local food system.
UGI is a local Urban Gardening Initiative in Muncie and Delaware County, networking resources and community engagement to encourage more local urban food production. UGI has many resources available including books, tools, a rototiller, straw, compost, seeds, plants and experienced gardeners to educate.
As it was done years ago, UGI has helped to start children's gardens at the Buley Community Center, the Ross Community Center, Muncie Boys & Girls Club, East Washington Academy and helped to strengthen church and vacant lot gardens throughout the the city.
Currently we have 11 gardens as a part of our UGI network totaling an estimated 1.75 acres of land in production in Muncie. This does not account for the hundreds of backyard gardens that are in production as well. UGI gardens include:
- North Street Urban Garden
- Maring Hunt Community Gardens
- Urban Light Community Garden
- Riverside UMC Community Garden
- Boys and Girls Club Garden
- Motivate Our Minds Childrens Garden
- Roy C. Buley Center Childrens Garden
- First Fruits Garden Project
- Youth Opportunity Center Youth Garden
- Inside Out Community Garden
- Howard Street Community Garden
View (UGI) Urban Gardening Initiative in a larger map.