Southside Free Grocery Program
Our neighborhood doesn’t have a grocery store, so it’s hard for residents to access fresh, healthy food. For years, we have been offering our fresh produce for free on the farm. In 2022, we expanded our free grocery program to include outdoor refrigerator space on the farm (behind the Edington Center, 133 Livingston Street) and pantry space at our orchard (214 Livingston St.). We also partner with South French Free Fridge (382 South French Broad Ave) and the outdoor pantry at the Dr. Wesley Grant Sr. Southside Community Center (285 Livingston Street) by providing them fresh fruits and veggies. In addition to offering our own produce, we purchase staple foods from local and BIPOC producers to offer in our community free of charge!

In 2023, more than 60% of the produce we grew was freely distributed through this program!

Learn more about our Free Grocery Program!

Southside BIPOC Farmers Market
Since 2021 we have hosted a farmers market as a way to make healthy, fresh food available in our neighborhood and to promote local craftspeople and farmers of color. We host the market on the first Sunday of the month, May-October at the Arthur R. Edington Center (133 Livingston St., Asheville). Besides our own fresh produce, you’ll also find many other local Black and Brown vendors at our EBT-accessible market. Come visit Asheville’s only BIPOC farmers market!

Our next farmers markets will be 12-3 PM on Sunday, June 2. For more details, click here.

Meet some of the vendors at our BIPOC Farmers Market!

Feed AVL Veggie Boxes
Our Veggie Box program delivers weekly free, fresh food boxes to 22 BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Color) households in the Southside neighborhood. Our program runs for 20 weeks over the farming season. Each week our members receive a bountiful box of seasonal, organic vegetables & herbs grown in West Asheville and at Southside Community Farm. We partner with local farms and businesses to provide additional produce, fruit, eggs, herbal teas, medicinal products, and value-added products. We give priority to our BIPOC business community with at least one additional box item per week sourced from a local, BIPOC-owned farm or business. Learn more about the program here.

Youth Farm Program
At Southside Community Farm we believe that engaging with our youth is one of the best ways to steward land and support a resilient future. Our youth programs support young people while inspiring curious exploration of the outdoors and their neighborhood. This summer, we are leading an agroecology program for neighborhood youth at the Edington Center.

Southside youth participants mixing soil for planting herb starts. Summer 2024.

Southside Community Orchard
Our 0.2 acre food forest is home to fruit trees, berries, culinary herbs, medicinal herbs, and native pollinator plants. It also includes picnic tables and a little free food pantry. The orchard location is 214 Livingston St., just about a block up the road from our farm plot.

Medicine to the People!
The best medicine is grown in healthy soil. Besides growing fruits and veggies, SCF also grows a variety of medicinal plants for community use. We offer free BIPOC-only workshops and neighborhood herbal medicine distribution. Workshops have included herb identification, elderberry syrup making, salve making, fire cider, incense making, and more. As a Black-led organization in a historically Black neighborhood, it is important to us that we celebrate the long legacy of African American herbalism and folk medicine by growing some of our traditional medicine plants. We also focus on pertinent health needs here in our community, such as immune support, eldercare, childcare, nervous system support, and basic first aid. In 2023, SCF started the Southside Medicine Garden located next to Burton Center Head Start, at 59 Gaston St., Asheville.

Chamomile grown at SCF for tea making.

BIPOC-Only Garden Days

BIPOC-only events are a time for us to come together, connect, heal, and experience joy with the land as people of color. Within this affinity space, sometimes we garden, and sometimes we just sit in the shade and eat snacks, enjoying each other’s company and some well-deserved rest. SCF leadership team member Ember Phoenix has also offered a series of free herbal medicine making workshops to our group.

BIPOC-only workshop participants creating salves with herbs grown on-farm.

Southside Free Seed Library
We love to support our neighbors’ home gardens! Gardening isn’t just fun and healthy, it’s an important part of community food sovereignty by taking our food system back into our own hands. SCF offers a free seed library, always open and available at the Southside Community Farm pavilion (on the farm, behind 133 Livingston St, Asheville). Come by and take what you need! As we fulfill our goal of saving our own seeds, more and more of what is available is grown by us.

Southside Free Seed Library is located at the Southside Community Farm pavilion.

Mobile Market
Our elder and co-founder Mr. Harris is always telling us to “take the garden out of the garden,” meaning that we must always find creative, mindful ways to meet community members where they are and bring our offerings out into the neighborhood. One way we hope to make this a reality is by starting a mobile market. Not everyone in our community has the time, ability, or desire to come to the farm. So we want to bring fresh local food right to where our neighbors live! To help us purchase a vehicle for our mobile market, donate here.

Help us purchase a vehicle for a mobile market!