Community gardens in Singapore

Singapore’s moniker as a Garden City is taken quite seriously. And it’s not just because we have trees that line our expressways or that the best attractions in Singapore for tourists include a visit to the Singapore Botanic Gardens or Gardens by the Bay.

It’s probably also because of the sheer number of community gardens we have on this Little Red Dot. There are 1,900 of them across the island, but we’ve picked out the best community gardens in Singapore where you can admire hand-grown veggies and flowers.

What is the purpose of a community garden?

Community gardens have a multitude of purposes, such as to cultivate edible plants, grow an interest in gardening, and foster community building among residents. The spaces are usually managed by volunteers to be enjoyed by the public. Some of these also have plots for rent, where you can grow your own flowers and plants.

Research has shown that community gardens or urban farms are also useful in the rare event that there’s a food shortage. In land-scarce Singapore, being able to grow your own fruits and vegetables ensures that residents have something to fall back on during tough times.

How do I join a community garden?

Community gardens are usually run by volunteers. The simplest way would be to go up to anyone you see tending to plants and asking if you can help. The ones listed here mostly have contact information where you can directly contact the volunteer group to join the community.

If you plan on starting a community garden instead, do contact NParks first before you start sowing seeds. This ensures that the land you’re using isn’t designated for other uses or that the plants you’re planning to grow won’t affect the natural biodiversity of the area.

You can find out more about starting your own community garden by reading the NParks Guide to Designing and Implementing Community Garden.

1. Community Gardens @ Jurong Play Gardens

Largest community garden in Singapore’s heartlands

community garden - Community Gardens @ Jurong Play Gardens
Image credit: Jurong Play Gardens

Serious gardeners without a place to exercise their green fingers and thumbs can consider getting a plot at the Community Gardens @ Jurong Play Gardens. It’s the largest of its kind in Singapore spanning 10,000sqft and has 56 plots for rent available.

community garden - Community Gardens @ Jurong Play Gardens school tour
Image credit: @jurongplaygrounds via Instagram

Half the plots are for farming purposes, so get this if you’re looking to grow your own vegetables. Easy plants to grow in Singapore include kangkong, cherry tomatoes, and even chilli. The other half of the plots are for plant collectors who need a space for the philodendrons, orchids, and lilies they can’t keep at home.

community garden - Community Gardens @ Jurong Play Gardens rental plots
One of the plant-collecting plots filled with rare leaf cuttings.
Image credit: @jurongplaygrounds via Instagram

You don’t have to worry about leaving your rare saplings here. The community garden is under CCTV surveillance 24/7. There’s even a 2m-high mesh fence and lockable gate for each plot to prevent anyone from the public from entering. You can still admire the plants here even if you don’t have a plot. Just be careful about not trespassing into individual plots when you walk by.

Single plot (320sqft): $500+/month
Double plot (640sqft): $900+/month
*Min. 1-year rental for all plots.

Address: 2 Jurong Gateway Road, Singapore 608512
Opening hours: 24 hours, Daily
Contact: 6275 3155 | Community Garden @ Jurong Play Garden website

2. Woodlands Botanical Garden

9-storey high garden with more than 200 plant species

community garden - Woodlands Botanical Garden
Image credit: @woodlandsbotanicalgarden via Instagram

There’s hardly anyone who doesn’t know about the Botanic Gardens that stretches from Tanglin all the way to Bukit Timah. But we bet few of you have heard of the other botanic gardens right in the heartlands – Woodlands Botanical Garden.

community garden - Woodlands Botanical Garden 2
Image credit: @woodlandsbotanicalgarden via Instagram

This community garden started out as a passion project by residents staying in Marsiling-Woodlands to transform a hill that was covered in tall grass and lalang. Volunteers spent weeks putting up trellises, planting more than 200 species of flowers and herbs, and even installing irrigation systems that can automatically water the garden.

community garden - Woodlands Botanical Garden fauna
Green Baron Butterfly and Green Pigeon.

Image adapted from: @woodlandsbotanicalgarden via Instagram

The garden has since attracted plenty of visitors, including various species of butterflies like the Painted Jezebel and Tailed Jay. If you stay long enough, you’ll even be able to spot other fauna like the Tropical Carpenter Bee and Rose-Ringed Parakeet. Plus, there’s an aviary for rescued budgerigars that adds to the unique fauna of the garden.

Address: 134 Marsiling Road, Singapore 730134
Opening hours: 24 hours, Daily
Contact: Woodlands Botanical Garden website

3. Blk 223A Jurong East Street 21

Uses fish waste to fertilise plants

Visitors to this community garden residing at Blk 223A Jurong East Street 21 will notice a large fish pond within its premises. Sure, it adds to the aesthetics of this place, but the pond actually serves a larger purpose.

community garden - Blk 223A Jurong East Street 21 water filter
The water filtering system that collects fish waste.

Image credit: Our Neighbourhood, Jurong-Clementi Town Council

Waste from the tilapia and koi that live here is used to fertilise all the other plants in the garden. But the process isn’t as easy as distributing fish poop across the different pots. The volunteers here devised a way to convert waste into usable plant food to grow vegetables like chye sim and baby bok choy.

community garden - Blk 223A Jurong East Street 21 bird aviary
Image credit: u/Innuendo6 via Reddit

Check out the complex filtering system the volunteers have set up if you plan on dropping by. You can even take a stroll around the serene garden that also has a bird aviary that keeps colourful lovebirds.

Address: Block 223A Jurong East Street 21, Singapore 601223

4. Cosy Garden @ Bukit Batok

Art sculptures & rock garden

community garden - Cosy Garden @ Bukit Batok chrome sculpture

If you just looked at pictures of Cosy Garden, we wouldn’t be surprised if you thought this Bukit Batok community garden was an actual public park. After all, you don’t see many community gardens with actual art sculptures or even a full-grown willow tree on site.

community garden - Cosy Garden @ Bukit Batok willow tree

But that’s not all. The chrome art sculpture is the centrepiece of the Japanese zen garden that comes complete with a rock garden. Take a seat at the sitting area under the metal shed to fully enjoy the peace and quiet here.

community garden - Cosy Garden @ Bukit Batok koi pond

When you’re ready to move again, there are koi and terrapin ponds to see too. The koi pond even has an impressive miniature waterfall that runs on renewable energy. Surrounding the pond are also fruits and vegetables that the resident volunteers have taken years to grow. The produce is grown using hydroponics, which uses water only and eliminates any need for soil.

The crew here has managed to successfully harvest watermelon, grapes, and kale from their farm.

Address: Behind 106 Bukit Central Road, Singapore 650106
Opening hours: Mon-Fri 9am-5pm (Closed on Saturdays and Sundays)
Contact: 6569 7769

5. The Peak @ Toa Payoh

Rooftop garden with papaya trees & bitter gourd vines

HDB rooftop gardens are aplenty. Most estates these days utilise the otherwise untouched space to add a bit of green to the landscape with shrubs, trees, and even play areas for the kids.

community garden - The Peak @ Toa Payoh plants

The residents at The Peak @ Toa Payoh have taken it one step further by growing their own flowering plants, fruits, and vegetables here. Some easily recognisable ones you can spot include papaya, bitter gourd, and even bananas.

community garden - The Peak @ Toa Payoh rooftop

The community garden is part of the much larger rooftop garden that’s situated here. You’ll often find residents taking a walk around in the evening enjoying the view or admiring the plants.

Address: 138 Lorong 1A Toa Payoh, Singapore 310138

6. Toh Guan Park Community Garden

Beds of leafy greens & brinjal grown by residents

Kampong Lorong Buangkok may be the last kampong in Singapore but that doesn’t mean the kampong spirit has died down anywhere else. It’s still quite evident at Toh Guan Park Community Garden.

community garden - Toh Guan Park Community Garden
Image credit: NParks via Facebook

Resident volunteers diligently tend to the multiple plots of veggies that grow here, including brinjal, chye sim, sweet potato leaves, ladies’ fingers, and bananas. It’s a huge plot of land that requires some 65 gardeners to help maintain the place.

The produce is then harvested about once a month, or whenever they’re ready, and sold to whoever wants them. The money collected goes back into buying more fertilisers, gardening tools, and even saplings so the garden continues to thrive.

Address: Next to 286C Toh Guan Road, Singapore 603286
Opening hours: 24 hours, Daily

7. ActiveSG Woodlands Sports Centre Urban Farm

Community garden right next to a swimming pool

The Garden Invasion Series: ActiveSG Woodlands Sports Centre Community Garden
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The Garden Invasion Series: ActiveSG Woodlands Sports Centre Community Garden

There are 29 ActiveSG gyms in Singapore, but only one of them has a community garden. The ActiveSG Woodlands Sports Centre Urban Farm is located right next to the swimming pool of the sports complex.

Volunteers have pretty much built this garden from the ground up. They have a strong mission to reduce waste as much as possible, so most of the trellises, identifying labels, and even the tank used to collect rainwater are made from recycled materials. One of the volunteers here even builds swings and benches out of scrap wood so visitors have a place to sit and relax.

community garden - ActiveSG Woodlands Sports Centre Urban Farm
Image credit: ActiveSG Circle

The team grows vegetables like kailan, brinjal, and bitter gourd that are harvested and used in home-cooked meals for the volunteers. Flowering plants are also grown here, and you’ll spot varieties of red ginger flowers, hibiscus, and Mexican creepers, the flowers of which you can make into tempura.

Address: 2 Woodlands Street 12, Singapore 738599
Opening hours: 7am-10pm, Daily
Contact: 6269 4192 | Woodlands Sports Centre website

8. Green Hub @ Bishan

Uses unconventional items to grow plants

community garden - Green Hub @ Bishan
Image credit: The Pride

Here at Green Hub @ Bishan, creativity knows no bounds. Old rice cookers and water dispensers have been repurposed into planting pots. Even a bathtub has been converted into a pond that now grows lily pads.

But the community garden here is much more than just a place to grow plants. It’s also a space for neighbours to meet and help each other.

community garden - Green Hub @ Bishan community fridge
Freshly-restocked fridge.
Image credit: Bishan East Zone 1 RN via Facebook

There’s a 24-hour community fridge where you’ll be able to pick up produce and even unsold bread from the bakery if you’re short on cash for the month. Any produce that doesn’t get taken up by residents goes into the composting bin that’ll then be used to fertilise everything else that is grown here.

Explore The Green Hub at Bishan St 12 | The Garden Revolution
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Explore The Green Hub at Bishan St 12 | The Garden Revolution

You’ll even find a cosy book nook filled with shelves of books donated by locals. The library has also been decorated with nostalgic items like antique rotary dial telephones, and vinyl records.

Address: Block 112 Bishan Street 12, Singapore 570112
Opening hours: Tue-Sat 2pm-10pm (Closed on Sundays and Mondays)
Contact: 9067 7776 | Green Hub Facebook

9. The Giving Garden @ Kim Tian West

Rooftop garden supplying residents with fresh produce

community garden - The Giving Garden @ Kim Tian West rooftop
Image credit: Archdaily

The Giving Garden @ Kim Tian West lives up to its name as vegetables grown here are given out to residents of Tiong Bahru estate, where the garden is located. Some 10 different types of vegetables are grown here, including kailan and kangkong.

community garden - The Giving Garden @ Kim Tian West volunteers
Image credit: The Giving Garden at Kim Tian West via Facebook

While most community gardens are independently run by volunteers, this one has the Tanjong Pagar Town Council involved. Volunteers and the council collaboratively decide what to plant, volunteer schedules, and even how the produce is distributed to residents. One resident was even hired by the council to look after the garden full time.

Address: Kim Tian Rd, Blk 119A Roof-top Level 5, Singapore 161119
Opening hours: 7.30am-9pm, Daily
Contact:  The Giving Garden Facebook

Grow your own produce at community gardens in Singapore

Many of us are probably already proud plant-rents with a collection of monsteras and ficuses at home. But gardening involves much more than just pruning and watering a couple of potted plants. If you’re looking to up your green skills, then volunteering at a community garden would do just that.

Of course, these gardens are just as enjoyable even if the only plants you can keep alive are fake ones. Drop by, take a stroll, and admire the hard work put in by the volunteers who’ve worked tirelessly to beautify their neighbourhood.

More places to get your dose of the garden city:

Cover image adapted from:

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