Something that hasn't been mentioned in the discussion of the proposed system of community gardens in any of the meetings I have watched on Government Channel since January is the natural stormwater control that community gardens provide. Basically, a well-managed community garden projected to raise food has all the potential value to cleanse water and reduce stormwater runoff that the widely touted rain gardens provide.
The only difference is what is planted. Rain gardens with native plants can also contain what we think of normal food plants. In fact, World Peace Wetland Prairie has had a few tomatoes, okra and other edibles growing out front. And the blooms of many food plants, especially okra, are dramatically beautiful.
Admittedly, gardens aren't easy to develop on some of our steep slopes, but the flatter areas of Fayetteville that haven't been paved or filled with red dirt for construction offer some of the best soil for gardening that can be found!