If you have always wanted to have a garden but lack space or need some additional room to grow, there are a few community boxes and rows still available for rent at the Glenbow Community Gardens.

Last Wednesday (May 15), fellow gardeners, volunteers, board members, and students came together to clean up the shared community garden space as well as the rented out wooden boxes and rows at Glenbow School, to prepare for another fertile year.

Providing residents with the opportunity to grow together during Cochrane's gardening season for the past ten years, the Cochrane Community Gardens Society (CCGS) not only provides the opportunity for individuals, couples or families to grow fruit, vegetables or flowers, but also to connect with a community of like-minded people. 

Andrea Blonsky, Chair of CCGS, says the society's mandate is to facilitate the creation of communal garden space based on public interest. "It is a great project. We have beginner gardeners who have never gardened before, we have gardeners who have come for elsewhere, and we have gardeners who will garden with us and then build their own boxes in their backyard...so it's a constant evolution."

Community gardens have so many benefits, shares Blonsky from educational opportunities for young and old, to hands-on exposure and experience, to meeting the mandate of helping others. "We have even used produce from the garden to cook meals that go into freezers that FCSS distributes through the Helping Hands program; it meets our mandate as well for social responsibility."

The Horticultural Society also runs an incredible composting system which uses the composted soil to provide the best possible growing landscape. Hoping to get something up and growing in the East End, Heritage Hills, and perhaps even Sunset Ridge down the road; Blonsky is pretty proud of the partnership between the Cochrane Community Gardens Society, the Cochrane and District Horticultural Society, Glenbow School and all the tenant gardeners. More than just the large site at Glenbow; there are also two community gardens at the Cochrane Ranche Park in the front and back of the Westerner Cabin as well as a small memorial garden at Frank Wills Memorial Hall.

While the inaugural kick-off clean up event for this year's gardening season occurred last Wednesday, Blonsky says Monday's will once again be set aside to share in work bee duties such as mowing, trimming, and other various tasks, and have also become a great opportunity to share questions and experiences with other fellow gardeners. "This is one of our big events and with it being our tenth year of growing, I am hoping to have ten special events throughout the five-month growing season (May-September). We have done things like brunch in the garden, a big dessert buffet, and we have even had live music; so it is a collective gathering area as well."

Blonsky says although the garden boxes and rows are completely rented out year after year, this year they have a few remaining rentals left. "All of the boxes are typically rented out, but we do have some right now. If we have any excess at the end of the year that are not rented out, we will communally grow, and participating gardeners will share in the produce."

The two societies have many gardeners who are passionate and willing to share their knowledge about gardening in our zone, composting, and healthy eating, which is also an added benefit.

The community garden space at Glenbow initially came to be ten years ago thanks to a town grant as well as grant monies received from the Cochrane Foundation. With the cost of water/delivery, insurance, and ongoing maintenance/repair of the boxes, the group is always looking and open to receive sponsorship dollars and donations.


Below is information on the rental cost to become a community gardener:


  • If you rent ONE box, the rental for it is $30.
  • If you rent more than ONE box, the rental for the first box is $30, rental for any further boxes is $25 per box.
  • The rental rate for each row is $40. 

If you would like to rent a box, row, or learn more, contact Blonsky at cochrane.gardens@gmail.com