Gandhi Mahal started growing some of its own produce in community gardens, Ruhel’s own backyard, and out front on the patio when we first opened in 2008. Last summer, our community came together to plant seven fruit trees in our new Peace Orchard. Businesses on our block and members of our sustainability team care for the trees, and the ripe fruit is free for individuals strolling by or waiting at the bus stop. Additionally, weekly summer visits by Ruhel to the Midtown Farmers’ Market keep us buying local veggies from small-scale farmers.
In 2012, Gandhi Mahal started working with students from the Higher Education Consortium for Urban Affairs (HECUA) to start an urban backyard farm. This was the beginning of Gandhi Mahal’s backyard farm initiative to build a network of backyard gardens supplying the restaurant with fresh, healthy, and local produce. Today, we still purchase backyard-grown produce at a wholesale price from gardeners in our community. Honey bees from the two beehives on our rooftop, a part of The Beez Kneez’s Urban Apiary program, even help to pollinate our neighbors’ gardens!
One of those backyard farms has grown into the Gandhi Mahal Interfaith Garden, a collaboration between Minnesota Interfaith Power & Light, First Nations Kitchen, and our restaurant. The garden is a community-centered space, located less than a half mile from Gandhi Mahal, where people dig into issues regarding urban soil health, climate change, and food justice. By hosting volunteers from communities of faith, youth groups, and individuals of all spiritual paths, we also explore our connection with the earth through food in how what we grow relates to diverse cultural and spiritual backgrounds. Watch the video below to learn more!
To learn more about our efforts to address climate change and build community, check out 'Growing Together,' a short video that tells our story.
MNIPL, First Nations Kitchen, and Gandhi Mahal Restaurant came together to form the Gandhi Mahal Interfaith Garden. This is their story.
Funding for this video is provided by the Center for Prevention at Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota.
We host individuals, faith community groups, businesses, and friends looking to get involved by volunteering at the Gandhi Mahal Interfaith Garden during the growing season. Sign up to volunteer.
or to learn more, please contact our Sustainability Coordinator, Claire Baglien, at firstname.lastname@example.org