Stories from the NFCCA Newsletter, the “Northwood News”

Northwood News ♦ June 2019

‘Everybody Grows’ Shares Its Flowers, Its Message

By Jacquie Bokow

Some of the walkers in the neighborhood might have strolled past 10706 Lockridge Drive and noticed the removal of the grass in the sloping front yard in favor of terraces.  A profusion of flowers now appears on these “swales,” the earthwork trenches that capture rain runoff.  Swales are a feature of permaculture, the development of agricultural ecosystems designed to be both sustainable and self-sufficient.

You may see Jake Ifshin or his colleagues working in the impressive garden.  Ifshin is the Executive Director of Everybody Grows, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization which, according to its website, was “founded to inspire and equip people to grow fresh, healthy food by bringing the home garden to everybody, wherever home may be.”

Part of the “Everybody Grows” mantra is that all people should be able to grow food for personal consumption no matter where they are, how old they are, how much they earn, or how mobile they are.  Everybody Grows is “committed to making fresh food accessible.”

The newly terraced front yard on Lockridge Drive dispenses with the usual lawn in order to grow flowers and vegetables.

All of us are aware how important the nutrients in fresh vegetables are for our health, but Everybody Grows also believes that gardening offers transformative and therapeutic benefits to individuals and communities.

Based in the Washington, D.C., area, the nonprofit has installed “Inspiration Gardens” at fire departments, churches, and nursing homes.  They planted a rooftop garden for the Discovery Channel and have installed accessible gardens for wheelchair-bound seniors.

“Our work brings families and communities closer through sharing the life-sustaining joy of growing food,” says their website.

These community-focused gardens provide an opportunity for people from all walks of life to learn how to plant, nurture, and harvest their own vegetable gardens.  Doing so is an educational experience that brings people together.  Everybody Grows provides the training and equipment.

If you have questions, visit their website for more information at or view a short film online at, Or you can email Jake AT EverybodyGrows DOT com.

“The intention of our gardens to create habitat for beneficial insects, grow food, and enrich the community,” said Ifshin.  “The gardens include a wildflower front yard and in-ground beds growing herbs and vegetables.  We welcome neighbors to harvest a few flowers as they pass by!”   ■

   © 2019 NFCCA  [Source:]