Learning Gardens

Embark operates two Learning Gardens at Simon Fraser University. One is an outdoor community garden on the Burnaby campus and the other is an indoor vertical garden on the Surrey campus. As part of our Theory of Change, the purpose of both gardens is to give our membership a space to explore their connections to food production and security in our communities. Embark hosts events and workshops at garden locations. Check to see if there’s an upcoming Learning Garden event or workshop on our events page.


The Burnaby Learning Garden is located on the south side of TASC1. This garden space is a community-centred learning, social and event space. Our members will learn how to grow, eat, and share campus-grown food while making SFU Burnaby more sustainable. Each season, plots are rented to student groups such as clubs, departmental students unions, and graduate caucuses, as well as SFU departments, labs and instructors. Currently campus groups like the Indigenous Student Centre, Out on Campus, the SFSS Women’s Centre and SFU Tea Club have garden plots.


The Surrey Learning Garden is located at the southwest corner of Podium 3, between sections 340-C and 341-T. The purpose of this installation is to spark dialogue around food production and security in our rapidly urbanising community. Additionally, the garden demonstrates how students can create and interact with an indoor gardening model. This is a pilot installation from May to June 2018.

Rent a Plot

Spring is here! Ready to start planting seeds? We have plots available in our Burnaby Learning Garden. Please fill out this form if you would like a growing space on campus this year.

Learning Gardens FAQ

1Do I need to be affiliated with SFU (i.e. student, faculty, staff) to rent a garden plot?
Yes. The Learning Garden facilities are for SFU students, campus groups, faculty, and staff to develop community around gardening, cooking, and eating.
2Am I able to have more than one garden plot?
While renting multiple garden plots is a possibility, it is based on availability. Please contact Pablo Vimos at gardens@embarksustainability.org to confirm.
3Can I pay for my plot with cash?
Unfortunately, no. We only accept payment via credit card, PayPal, or cheque.
4Is this an organic garden?
Yes, the Learning Garden is a pesticide-free and wildlife-friendly zone. Garden users are required to use organic practices in the upkeep and operation of the garden plot.
5Do I need any equipment?
Yes. Since the gardening takes place in raised beds, the need for equipment is minimal. We’d recommend the following tools: hand trowel, pencil, pair of scissors, and a watering can.
6Can I plant flowers and/or berry bushes?
Planting berry bushes (blackberry, raspberry, blueberry, oregon grape, thimbleberry, etc.) in garden plots is prohibited. However, we permit strawberries, flowers, and flowering herbs that favour pollinators.
7Do I need to do anything in addition to gardening my plot?
To build community and make your experience as beneficial as possible, we host a series of instructional workshops as well as work parties throughout the year. It is expected that all gardeners attend at least one workshop or work party.

Burnaby Learning Garden
supported in part by:

Simon Fraser University
SFU Dining Services
SFU Parking Services

Surrey Learning Garden
supported in part by:

Simon Fraser University
SFU Surrey Campus
SFU Surrey Facilities Services