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A Community Garden Takes Root in Las Vegas


Rosalind Brooks plants a garden in the desert and fosters a new generation of urban farmers

By David G. Schwartz
Apr 21, 2016


In 2010, Brooks founded the Tonopah Community Garden on an otherwise derelict 5 acres at 715 N. Tonopah Drive. The land came from Frank Hawkins Jr., a former Las Vegas councilman and developer.

Brooks, a Las Vegas native, embraced the chance to grow despite a lack of gardening experience because there wasn’t a public community garden in Las Vegas. Her city was missing something vital, even if no one knew it yet. A classical dancer and a schoolteacher, she was content in the classroom until she felt called to do “something greater than what I was doing.” With the support of her husband and her two college-graduate daughters, she followed her calling, although she had no idea where it would lead. “Had I known I’d be coming out of the classroom to be a farmer,” she jokes, “I would have stayed.”

Renamed Vegas Roots Community Garden in 2012, the farm relies on an army of volunteers for everything from planting to harvesting. Students from several schools in the Valley, including the Meadows School, Green Valley High School, Wendell P. Williams Elementary and Rancho High School, have worked in the garden.

Read the complete article here.