Vacant Lots Farm Club promotes outdoor nature based healing experiences.

Vacant lots sit empty as they await future development. We see a better way.

Our vision is to create an effective system for activating a diverse network of vacant urban lots throughout the city of Calgary.

"Food is the single strongest lever to optimize human health and environmental sustainability on Earth.”
EAT Lancet Commission

What is a Vacant Lot

A vacant lot is an unused parcel of land, often slated for future development. These can be future home lots, school sites, commercial development land, or even underutilized greenspaces.

In the current system unused land, or “commercial land waiting for improvements”, has no real value placed on it until the built environment has been constructed.

By filling these lots with volunteers, mulch and plants, we alleviate some of the problems with vacant lots: dust, runoff, garbage, and vandalism. We leverage this land as a current resource which starts creating value almost immediately.

How Nature Helps

Nature has complex mechanisms by which it can affect our health and wellbeing. Engaging with nature can improve your creativity, boost your immune system, and accelerate recovery.

Overwhelming research now links nature contact with positive mental, physical, and social outcomes.

Our Values

We acknowledge Mohʼkinsstis and Treaty 7 territory the traditional and ancestral territory of the Blackfoot Confederacy: Kainai, Piikani and Siksika as well as the Tsuu Tʼina Nation and Stoney Nakoda First Nation. We acknowledge that this territory is home to the Métis Nation of Alberta, Region 3 within the historical Northwest Métis Homeland. We acknowledge the many First Nations, Métis and Inuit who have lived in and cared for these lands for generations. We are grateful for the traditional Knowledge Keepers and Elders who are still with us today and those who have gone before us. We make this acknowledgement as an act of reconciliation and gratitude to those whose territory we reside on.

We embrace the wisdom passed down through generations, including the invaluable insights shared by Indigenous elders across the globe. Rooted in respect for the land and its inhabitants, our philosophy honours the interconnectedness of all living beings and recognizes the importance of sustainable stewardship for future generations.

Central to our approach is the concept of reciprocity—a fundamental principle in many Indigenous cultures. We understand that our relationship with the land is reciprocal, and we strive to give back as much as we take. Just as we nourish the soil, the soil nourishes us, fostering a symbiotic relationship that sustains life in all its forms. We listen to the land, learn from its rhythms, and honour its wisdom as we cultivate therapeutic urban landscapes that nourish the body, mind, and spirit.

Our values are:


Caring in a wise way for yourself and others.


Practical awareness of the realm of possibilities.


Doing the right thing even when no one is looking.

1000 Year View

The past tells us who we are. The future tells us who we want to be.

Our Story

We are a husband and wife co-founding team. Jack is a scientist turned ecological designer and urban farmer. Diane is an experiences interior designer and flower enthusiast with organic vegetable farm experience. Our personal interests, paired with our professional understanding of how things can be thoughtfully designed have laid the groundwork for our vision. W believe we can design a greener, more intentional future while enhancing quality of life in meaningful ways.

When we first met in 2015, we bonded over the shared experience of having accompanying our moms through cancer. We experienced the mindful connection and the critical nourishment of growing our own food and flowers in these difficult times. When the Covid-19 pandemic hit, we all watched our world simultaneously unite and crumble. Personally, we experienced loss, medical trauma, and long distances with family. All throughout we found ourselves with a growing reverence for home-grown food, the beauty of flowers, and the simplicity of working with the land. Engaging in these activities was not just soothing but truly healing. Now, we have a passion to create opportunities for others to experience the same.

One of the main inspirations for our work is the venerable Annie Gale (City of Calgary Alderman 1918-1923) and the Vacant Lots Garden Club that she helped to start more than a century ago.

The club was wildly successful, with 3,229 vacant lots growing vegetables and flowers at its peak including 200 acres of land around the General Hospital growing food for patients.

Our contemporary experience working with hundreds of volunteers, leveraging vacant municipal and provincial properties for growing for profit and charity, show us that these ideas are just as valuable today.

We're proud to be collaborating with amazing community partners:

The City of Calgary
Parks Foundation Calgary
Southern Alberta Institute of Technology (SAIT)
Vivo for Healthier Generations
Care Farming Network
Basil Ranch