Any urban Episcopal Church congregation that thinks it does not have enough green space for community gardening could learn a lesson fromSt. Andrew’s here.

Along the way, those congregations would also learn about an integrated effort to reduce the parish’s carbon footprint.

“We’re trying to be a model,” said J.B. Hoover, parishioner and garden volunteer. “An urban parish can do something. It’s not limited to a suburban or rural parish that has a lot of land.”

Approaching St. Andrew’s front side shows a mid-1950s A-frame-style building overlooking the Interstate 5 Expressway in Seattle’s Green Lake neighborhood. The building’s west and south sides reveal a different story. Two small terraced gardens flank the side street stairs into the church. In the side yard between the church and the house next door, owned by St. Andrew’s, are some old City of Seattle Green Cones ( for recycling food waste. Volunteers are transforming the house’s backyard from what had been an over-gown mess. Now, there is a terraced garden, a four-level composting system and some compost storage bins recently built by a fledgling Eagle Scout.