15 Best Cities for Urban Gardening

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Mother and daughter gardening
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Editor's Note: This story originally appeared on LawnStarter.

Urban gardening — growing your own food in the limited square footage available in a big city — requires a shovel, seeds, and some creativity.

So, where can city-dwelling green thumbs find their patch of paradise?

LawnStarter ranked 2022’s Best Cities for Urban Gardening. We looked for cities with easy access to gardening space and supplies, an ideal climate, and a local gardening community.

What exactly is urban gardening? Think empty parking lot-turned-communal veggie plot, rooftop container garden, or vertical plant wall — and sharing your bounty. This global movement is as much about growing food as it is about cultivating community.

1. St. Louis

St. Louis
CrackerClips Stock Media / Shutterstock.com

Overall score: 47.48

Gardening space rank: 1

Supplies rank: 15

Climate rank: 146

Community rank: 20

2. Cincinnati, OH

anthony-heflin / Shutterstock.com

Overall score: 43.46

Gardening space rank: 8

Supplies rank: 22

Climate rank: 148

Community rank: 2

3. Atlanta, GA

Atlanta, Georgia
Sean Pavone / Shutterstock.com

Overall score: 39.34

Gardening space rank: 2

Supplies rank: 63

Climate rank: 58

Community rank: 49

4. Macon, GA

Macon, Georgia
Sean Pavone / Shutterstock.com

Overall score: 4

Gardening space rank: 186

Supplies rank: 186

Climate rank: 105

Community rank: 19

5. Salt Lake City, UT

Salt Lake City, Utah
Joe Guetzloff / Shutterstock.com

Overall score: 38.28

Gardening space rank: 5

Supplies rank: 72

Climate rank: 172

Community rank: 10

6. Miami, FL

Miami, Florida
littleny / Shutterstock.com

Overall score: 37.84

Gardening space rank: 120

Supplies rank: 1

Climate rank: 1

Community rank: 37

7. Winston-Salem, NC

Winston-Salem, North Carolina
Sean Pavone / Shutterstock.com

Overall score: 37.67

Gardening space rank: 13

Supplies rank: 127

Climate rank: 93

Community rank: 1

8. Baton Rouge, LA

Baton Rouge Louisiana
CrackerClips Stock Media / Shutterstock.com

Overall score: 35.96

Gardening space rank: 3

Supplies rank: 77

Climate rank: 55

Community rank: 90

9. Augusta, GA

Augusta, Georgia
ESB Professional / Shutterstock.com

Overall score: 35.49

Gardening space rank: 14

Supplies rank: 193

Climate rank: 71

Community rank: 6

10. Salem, OR

Salem, Oregon
James Curzio / Shutterstock.com

Overall score: 34.91

Gardening space rank: 36

Supplies rank: 10

Climate rank: 156

Community rank: 3

11. Clarksville, TN

Close up of a map of Clarksville and Nashville.
sevenMaps7 / Shutterstock.com

Overall score: 34.83

Gardening space rank: 7

Supplies rank: 170

Climate rank: 130

Community rank: 38

12. Mobile, AL

City scene from Mobile, Alabama
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Overall score: 33.70

Gardening space rank: 6

Supplies rank: 145

Climate rank: 43

Community rank: 116

13. Knoxville, TN

Knoxville, Tennessee
Kevin Ruck / Shutterstock.com

Overall score: 33.21

Gardening space rank: 21

Supplies rank: 80

Climate rank: 94

Community rank: 8

14. Murfreesboro, TN

J. Adam Hamilton / Shutterstock.com

Overall score: 32.60

Gardening space rank: 12

Supplies rank: 101

Climate rank: 145

Community rank: 26

15. Richmond, VA

Richmond, Virginia
ESB Professional / Shutterstock.com

Overall score: 32.22

Gardening space rank: 23

Supplies rank: 70

Climate rank: 91

Community rank: 11


Man analyzing data on a laptop
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We ranked 196 of the biggest U.S. cities from most (No. 1) to worst (No. 196) for urban gardening based on their overall scores (out of 100 possible points), averaged across all the weighted metrics listed below.

  • Average Yard Square Footage
  • Community Gardens per 100,000 Residents
  • Nurseries and Gardening-Supply Stores per Square Mile
  • Landscaping Equipment and Supply Stores per Square Mile
  • Historical Average Number of Days in Growing Season
  • Historical Average Percentage of Sunshine (Spring to Fall)
  • Historical Average Monthly Inches of Rain (Spring to Fall)
  • Historical Average Number of Very Cold Days (Min. Temp. ≤ 32 Degrees F)
  • Historical Average Number of Very Hot Days (Max. Temp. ≥ 90 Degrees F)
  • Regional Gardening Clubs per 100,000 Residents
  • Number of Gardening Meetup Groups
  • CSAs (Community Supported Agriculture) per 100,000 Residents
  • Locavore-Friendliness

Sources: The Almanac, American Community Gardening Association, LawnStarter, National Garden Clubs, Inc., National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, U.S. Department of Agriculture, and Yelp