Year-Round Local Resources
The following lists can help you find resources and get tips from other gardeners:
Check out the links below if you would like to connect with StopWaste about gardening.
East Bay Garden Friends Facebook Group: This East Bay Garden Friends group is meant for new and experienced home and community gardeners in the East Bay, CA who focus on building healthy soil while also growing plants.
StopWaste At Home E-Newsletter: Sign up to get tips for sustainable living in Alameda County, delivered to your inbox!
StopWaste’s Gardening Tips and Resources YouTube Videos: View all of our instructional and educational gardening videos and comment with your questions. We’ll respond to the best of our ability!
Explore the tools below for tips on building healthy soil and growing a beautiful garden.
Learn more about building healthy soil and find tips to help you get started in your garden. This guide introduces soil building strategies including composting, sheet mulching and cover cropping.
Congratulations...you have transformed your lawn into a garden, but now what? This brochure covers how to maintain your garden after sheet mulching and includes a calendar of tasks so that you will be ready for every season.
This 70+ page guide is written for the home gardener and provides how-to information, a design survey, profiles of East Bay gardens, and much more.
Wondering about the health of your soil? This interactive guide provides activities for you to engage and observe various aspects of your soil. Do just one activity or them all, at a pace that suits you.
Growing cover crops is an excellent practice for all gardeners with an interest in building healthy soil, and especially for growing food. This handout covers the basics and gets you started with step-by-step guidance.
This in-depth guide can answer all of your compost questions. Whether you are an urban farmer, community gardener, or a backyard homesteader, this toolkit supports you in becoming an expert composter.
El objetivo de este kit de herramientas es proporcionar un enfoque práctico paso a paso para los agricultores urbanos de cualquier escala para comenzar el compostaje en la granja agrícola, evaluar y mejorar el sistema existente, y convertirse en maestros compostadores.
After over a decade of gathering backyard fruit in Alameda and donating it to the Alameda Food Bank, Alameda Backyard Growers collaborated with StopWaste to produce this guide to starting a gleaning program in your community.
Check out our Healthy Soils Webinar Series, which includes our Healthy Soils, Backyard Composting, and Worm Composting webinars, plus all of the soil building resources mentioned in the webinars.
View all of our instructional and educational gardening videos and comment with your questions. We’ll respond to the best of our ability!
Free compost and composting assistance are now available to residents and community organizations in Alameda County. Compost Hubs are sites that offer free compost to residents, and StopWaste offers assistance with on-site composting to organizations and community groups growing food.
Our partner nurseries stock diverse Bay-Friendly plants and supplies that can help make your garden successful. Be sure to call before visiting as hours, inventory, and services may change.
Excited to build your own garden bed but need to borrow a drill? Maybe you need a pair of sharp loppers to trim your fruit trees? Several cities in Alameda County have tool lending libraries where residents can rent a variety of tools for 1-3 weeks at a time while participating in a circular and sharing economy.
- Alameda Library of Things
- Berkeley Tool Lending Library
- Fremont Centerville Library
- Fremont Irvington Library
- Oakland Tool Lending Library
- San Leandro Library of Things
Are you looking to start a spring garden or plant some herbs on your windowsill? Check out these seed libraries where new and experienced gardeners alike can find a variety of common and heirloom seeds! This is a great way to keep resources local and help develop seed varieties that are adapted to local micro-climates.
- Alameda Backyard Growers Free Seed Libraries
- Alameda Seed Lending Library
- Bay Area Seed Interchange Library (BASIL) - Berkeley
- Biofuel Oasis
- Castro Valley Seed Library
- Hayward Seed Lending Library
- Oakland Seed Lending and Gardening
- San Leandro Seed Lending Library
Visit the Lawn to Garden Marketplace for a complete directory of Bay Area sources for bulk recycled compost, mulch, and sheet mulch materials and visit the FAQ section for tips for buying bulk compost.
Here are some of our partner vendors who carry great products for home gardeners:
These partner organizations produce and distribute healthy food, provide essential services, community education, and resources, and are neighborhood models of carbon farming.
The Castlemont Farm and Garden is a working on-campus farm with a long history of supporters and stewards. Currently, a collaboration between Growing Together’s schoolyard program and Oakland Leaf’s Love Cultivating Schoolyards program engages students to learn about community food systems and provide food for families in the neighborhood.
Planting with Compost
Give your plants a boost by adding compost when you plant.