As you prepare your soil for planting, take time to plan your physical growing space. Consider your placement of crop rows, physical structures, and social areas to enhance your growing experience.

Some questions to ask yourself about design: Is there a place for people to stop and enjoy the greenery? Will you be able to access each row or plot with a wheelbarrow and tools? If you have the land long-term, why not plant some fruit trees? If your farm is very public, it might be a good idea to reach out to local landscape architects or landscape architecture students from a nearby program– one may do some “pro bono” designs for your space. Visit local farms (especially on nearby campuses) to see how the space is designed. The Resources page has links to books and sites that can get you thinking about great designs, as well as sample designs for school farms that are growing lots of healthy food and beautifying their campuses.
You’ll be surprised by the number of small details involved in planning a whole garden or farm. Everything from the type of gravel, grass, or mulch you use to line pathways to the distance from one row or bed to the next becomes important. Don’t overwhelm yourself — start small! Build your venture one row and one crop at time, and design with the future in mind. Envision your goals for the short, middle, and long-term, and remember each new plant, tree, or picnic table enhances your growing community.