Philadelphia does Yardsharing: Part 3

By lawrence

Philadelphia does Yardsharing: Part 3

Sharing Backyards


In 2004, Christopher Hawkins, a web developer located in British Columbia, started Sharing Backyards as a side project. Sharing Backyards is an online garden match-maker, connecting people with extra yard space but no one to garden it with aspiring gardeners who don’t have yard space. Over time, the website has expanded to 400 cities in Canada, and has even extended to cities in the United States and New Zealand (go figure!).

Current Status

The Philadelphia listings for Sharing Backyards are outdated, and though I emailed six different users, none of them replied. Most of the listings are from 2011, when the Philadelphia branch of Sharing Backyards launched.


In dense cities, backyards with enough sun for gardening are rare, and there are long waiting lists for plots in community gardens. Sharing Backyards has the potential to help people connect and find ways to garden.


Sharing Backyards has expanded to include many different cities, and although a broad reach is exciting, it is likely that there isn’t enough capacity to follow through with all these cities and promote/encourage the service.

Organization Structure/Contact Info

Sharing Backyards is split into cities/regions and (unfortunately) it is unclear whether or not each city has its own local leadership/organizing team. The leadership of the Philadelphia program can (supposedly) be contacted through