Gaia Gardens

Raising Awareness on the Benefits of Urban Farming through Puppet Show Performances
Posted on: September 3, 2013


Gaia Gardens, located in the heart of Santa Fe, is an educational nonprofit organization dedicated to demonstrating and teaching urban farming, incorporating sustainability and permaculture practices.  We believe that lasting ecological health and social well-being can be fostered by rekindling our connection to the Earth and reclaiming our food sovereignty.

Our farm has recently gotten a lot of press and public support after being issued a Notice of Violations from the City because of alleged violations in current zoning codes.  The current codes do not allow a business (or non-profit) to operate in a residential neighborhood with more than two employees (volunteers are viewed as employees by the City).  And, Gaia Gardens has had lots of enthusiastic volunteers and interns over the past two years, eager to learn about organic farming.  In addition, the City claims we have too many visitors (like school children!).

We at Gaia Gardens know urban farming is part of the future – not only as a sustainable practice, but also as a way to create community.  To this , we int to launch initiatives that will help create a new city ordinance to support and protect urban agriculture in Santa Fe.

We plan to host a series of events for the community to introduce the benefits of having farms in the city.  Events will feature puppet show performances celebrating farming in community and honoring the local folk heroes who have contributed to maintaining the rich agricultural heritage of Northern New Mexico.

The situation that Gaia Gardens is encountering – city codes not supporting urban agriculture and the sale of farm produce in a residential area, is a great opportunity to bring the community together in a joyous, multi-generational and creative way.


Research historical characters who have contributed to preserving the rich agricultural heritage of New Mexico
Build a mobile puppet theater
Design puppets and write screenplays
Design publicity for the events
Hire art director to coordinate music and puppet performances


The events will begin as soon as the puppet theater is ready, as time is of the essence in the drafting of a new urban agriculture ordinance.
Performances will be presented at schools, libraries, churches as well as other venues throughout the City.
Talented musicians and artists have already offered their services for our events.


Urban farming is a critical aspect not only of a sustainable future, but also of community building and resilience.
Santa Fe doesn’t have codes that support urban farming or educational programs on the topic.
To the degree that our events can be successful at winning the heart of the community, it will greatly enhance the chances of an urban agriculture ordinance to be adopted by the City Council.
An urban agriculture ordinance will pave the way for other urban farms to come into being and bring Santa Fe one step forward into its sustainable future.