The Pennsylvania Horticultural Society (PHS) is a nonprofit membership organization, founded in 1827, that connects people to horticulture to create beautiful, healthy, sustainable communities. PHS offers programs and events for gardeners of all levels, and works with volunteers, organizations, agencies, and businesses to create and maintain vibrant green spaces. The organization’s Philadelphia Flower Show is the nation’s largest and longest-running horticultural event and was named the top event in the world by the International Festivals & Events Association. With a 2015 Center grant, PHS presented Pop Up Garden: An Exploration of the Philadelphia Rail Park, an array of imaginative public installations and creative community interventions that introduced audiences to the rich architectural heritage of the three-mile park. In 2017, PHS received Center support for Farm for the City: Growing for Greater Good, a temporary “farm-as-art installation” that transformed center city Philadelphia’s Thomas Paine Plaza into a civic commons for conversations about urban agriculture, food access, and community revitalization. In 2020, PHS received a Center Project grant for sTREEt Work, a large-scale sculptural work and a series of public interactions that will raise awareness of how trees can combat the effects of climate change in urban communities.
Pennsylvania Horticultural Society’s (PHS) Farm for the City: Growing for Greater Good transformed center city Philadelphia’s Thomas Paine Plaza into a temporary “farm-as-art installation” to encourage public conversations about the role of urban agriculture in strengthening communities. Demonstrating to visitors that, as PHS says, “gardens are places where people come together,” the project offered gardening workshops, large-scale community dinners, and poetry and storytelling performances, along with interactive panel discussions organized around the themes of food access and community revitalization. Over the course of four months, the farm’s raised bed gardens grew more than 1,200 pounds of produce, which was donated to Broad Street Ministry, a nearby community service organization dedicated to serving the homeless. The project also enabled PHS to develop an apprenticeship model to cultivate emerging community and civic leaders who will continue the momentum sparked by Farm for the City.
Additional unrestricted funds are added to each grant for general operating support.