So you want to garden but lack the space to do so? You're not alone. Countless people in every city in the world either live in apartments, and thus lack a lawn to tear up, or live in condos or rental units where the yard is not theirs to do as they please with.

Fortunately, you're in luck.

In 2006, a couple of Canadians posted a list of people willing to share their yards to the bulletin board at a local community garden site, to help take some of the pressure off the waiting list. The paper list grew into a web-based list, and eventually was developed into a specialized mapping program that works as a skin on top of Google maps.

The site was further developed to be able to be active in any city in the world. In Jan 2006,there were Sharing Backyards programs in 3 Canadian cities. By Jan 2009, there were programs in 10 North American cities. Today, there are 27 programs running worldwide, including Canada, the USA, Australia, and New Zealand. New programs begin every month.

The yard sharing programs are free to use, and there's no membership required to access the site.

To find out if there's a program active in your city, visit www.sharingbackyards.com

You'll improve your chances of finding a match (and thus space to garden) if you help promote the program in your area, or start a program where one doesn't yet exist. For information on starting a program, please visit here

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