Million Gardens Movement (MGM) is a charitable and educational initiative that hopes to put a garden in every household—whether that’s on a fire escape, in a window box, or as part of a community garden initiative—and fresh fruit and vegetables on every plate. The brain child of Frank Giustra and Elon Musk’s brother Kimbal, MGM puts Little Green Garden units in homes and classrooms for just a $10 donation.
The Little Green Gardens are ready-to-use fruit and vegetable garden beds—and over 5,000 of them have already been distributed. Kimbal Musk explains that each garden bed comes with a customized growing plan and online lessons and activities to support the growing of culturally relevant at-home veggie gardens.
If you’re a gardener, sign up to join the community. Donate $10 to give a garden to a family that can’t afford it, or that lives in a food desert, read and contribute to the blog, and then tell other gardeners about it. With thousands of gardeners already joining up with the movement, celebrities like Harrison Ford, Zooey Deschanel, Nicole Scherzinger, and Kimbal’s brother Elon—are helping spread the word.
We’ve been so humbled by the overwhelmingly positive response and the passion surrounding our mission,” says Frank Giustra. “When Warwick Saint was photographing gardening activists for our launch, activists like Salma Hayek and Jonathan Scott were asking us “What more can I do for the Movement? What else can I do to help get more people involved? That’s a real sign of how dedicated people are to making a difference.”
7,300 gardens in total have been started, including some done out-of-pocket, while 632 have gone into schools to teach kids about gardening and grow a new generation of gardening-savvy adults. “We’ve been able to deliver garden kits to Denver, Detroit, Memphis, and Indianapolis so far,” Giustra said. “We’re working to deliver 5,000 kits in Denver alone in April for Earth Month, and we’re working on delivery plans for cities after that drop. The most successful aspect of the Million Gardens Movement has been the continual growth of an online gardening community,” says Giustra. “Our Movement, just like gardening, is about developing our best aspects slowly and steadily as we grow in numbers towards one million gardeners. Seeing people donate is wonderful because they are helping others garden, and those who donate might also take up gardening.”
Food insecurity was a problem in America long before the pandemic began. One study from 2017 found that 5.6% of Americans don’t have adequate access to fresh food. The benefits of a home garden can significantly reduce these impacts—even something the size of the Little Green Gardens given out by MGM can help. “Our hope is to quickly expand to Canada this year with sights on Vancouver and Toronto,” says Musk. “We hope to expand to Mexico and beyond to make this a worldwide movement to encourage millions of people to grow their own food.”