Interested in starting a community garden and pollinator habitat? The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) is now accepting applications to establish gardens and seasonal high tunnels through the Texas NRCS Urban Conservation Project.

The project is an effort to challenge community organizations, educational institutions and tribes to establish community and school gardens across the state to address hunger and engage citizens.

“The simple act of planning a garden can help unite neighbors in a common effort and inspire locally-led solutions to challenges facing our state,” Salvador Salinas, Texas NRCS state conservationist, said. “The challenges that can be addressed with locally-led solutions can be diverse in an urban setting.”

Grants are available for up to $4,000 for a community garden and $6,500 for a seasonal high tunnel.

To be eligible, prospective projects must be located in one of the following counties: Bexar, Brazos, Cameron, Dallas, El Paso, Galveston, Harris, Hidalgo, Jefferson, Lubbock, Maverick, McLennan, Nueces, Polk, Potter, Tarrant, Travis, Webb and Wichita.

Grants of up to $3,000 are available for Monarch butterfly gardens.

Preference will be given to proposed Monarch gardens in the following counties because of their location in the butterfly’s flight path: Atascosa, Bastrop, Bell, Bexar, Blanco, Burnet, Caldwell, Comal, Dallas, Ellis, Gillespie, Guadalupe, Hays, Johnson, Kaufman, Kendall, Kerr, Lee, Limestone, Llano, Navarro, McLennan, Palo Pinto, Parker, Tarrant, Travis, Williamson and Wilson.

Applications are due Dec. 15.

The notice of funding opportunity is available at The opportunity number is USDA-NRCS-TX-UCP-18-01, and the title is Texas NRCS Urban Conservation Project.

Applicants can also enter the Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) number 10.902 to search for this grant.

For more information, contact Bertha T. Venegas at (830) 249-3508, extension 103.