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Meet Abhi Arora and Rishi Kumar of Healing Gardens

Today we’d like to introduce you to Abhi Arora and Rishi Kumar.

Healing Gardens was co-founded by Abhi Arora and Rishi Kumar in 2020. Rishi has been an urban farmer since 2010, growing food and teaching people to grow food at his farm, Sarvodaya Farms in Pomona. Abhi was one of his students and CTO founder of a public company. Rishi and Abhi often talked about how they could encourage people to create more gardens. They’d both seen how gardens were healing for both people and Earth. Gardens are places where trees are planted, compost is made, local & nutritious food is grown, all of which contribute to reversing climate change by sequestering carbon in soil. Gardens also have tremendous impacts on people’s mental and physical health. Rishi had seen this in his many years running urban farms. People would come for a compost workshop and not want to leave because they loved being in the garden. Abhi had this experience of healing himself. After a particularly intense period of stress at his previous startup, Abhi developed anxiety issues. Being in gardens was an important part of his healing process. Abhi also met others who were resolving their anxiety issues by being in nature. Realizing a way to propagate the benefits of gardens across our cities was the genesis of Healing Gardens. Bringing unique and organic gardens to people who need to de-stress and rejuvenate. At the same time empowering gardeners and farmers’ to reach and share their mission with a wider audience. Since inception, Healing Gardens has 25 + gardens and farms listed on their platform in Los Angeles, San Diego, San Francisco, Sacramento, and Ohio.

We all face challenges, but looking back would you describe it as a relatively smooth road?
Like in any new business, the road has not been smooth. Our biggest challenge initially was just clarifying the idea. Just that process took almost eight months of refining as we talked to friends, family and strangers about what we were trying to do and how we would market it. Only after we could explain the idea in one clear sentence did we even try to start creating a business out of it. We thought we would have trouble getting gardens to sign up because this was a new concept, and we weren’t sure how many people would be interested. What we found instead was that there were already many gardens doing exactly what we wanted to do, with many of the pain points we were trying to address: insurance issues, online bookings and payments, having an online presence. Today we experience some of the same challenges other startups face: getting the word out, getting people to understand what we do and what we offer, and getting to a size that’s sustainable for us financially. We are on target this year to give gardeners more than $100K.

Thanks for sharing that. So, maybe next you can tell us a bit more about your business?
Healing Gardens brings gorgeous gardens to people who need to de-stress and restore through an Airbnb-like marketplace. We have two sides to the marketplace that we bring together – on one side are all the people like us who are frustrated with living in urban concrete-filled places. And on the other side, we have gardeners who have built gorgeous oasis gardens in the middle of cities. Some recent experiences and interactive events taking place in Healing Gardens are yoga classes, outdoor workouts, comedy shows, meditation series, and goat petting for children, etc. Healing Garden hosts choose their own pricing structure depending on their offerings, amenities, and range of activities available. Reserving private time by the hour can range from $15 to $150 depending on the number of people, time being spent, and type of offering. For example, just working with your laptop from a garden would be just $15/hr. But booking the same garden for a birthday party would be more. We have rolled out nationwide and hope to have 10-20 gardens in all major US cities by the end of the year.

We are accepting garden and farm host applications to be listed on our site from all cities nationwide. If the garden and/or farm meets the requirements set by the Healing Gardens’ team then the host’s profile will be approved and available to book immediately. The online application can be found at the following link and only takes a few minutes to sign up and complete. https://healinggardens.co/host-your-garden What makes us unique are all the gardens listed on our platform. They are a feast for the senses and are curated to help people restore, rejuvenate and reconnect in the comfort of our plant elders. Each garden is intentionally created and designed so that guests can embrace their surroundings which is something you just can get at a public park. Your experience at our gardens will also be totally private! Healing Gardens also offer different events and activities on a regular basis for individuals to book.

So maybe we end on discussing what matters most to you and why?
By creating a marketplace economy that makes regenerative organic urban gardens and farms more accessible to urban communities, Healing Gardens’ mission is to draw awareness to the wellness benefits of gardens and also help create regenerative organic gardens that reverse climate change. We use technology to connect garden hosts with wellbeing seekers across the world. In the process, we empower hosts to become hospitality entrepreneurs while enabling and inspiring the wellbeing of people and the planet. Healing Gardens’ vision is to create a world where people can belong, share and experience the healing power of gardens.

Pricing:

  • There are a wide variety of offerings at a variety of price ranges. At the low end you can expect to pay about $15 per hour.
  • There are even free events at some gardens

Contact Info:

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