Betty and Jacob Friedman, Houston Jewish Community Foundation



The Betty and Jacob Friedman Holistic Garden was established in 2018 by the Houston Jewish Community Foundation on behalf of the estate of Betty Friedman. Rice has had several small garden plots over the past 20 years that have come and gone, but thanks to the Friedmans' generous donation, the Holistic Garden sits on a permanent 2/5-acre plot, which is more than four times larger than all of Rice's previous gardens combined. Housed in Rice's Biosciences Department and cultivated under the tutelage of Dr. Joe Novak, the Betty and Jacob Friedman Holistic Garden is recognized as a model of sustainable urban agriculture.


Green Mountain Energy Sun Club


sun club logo

Thanks to a generous grant from the Green Mountain Energy Sun Club, the Betty and Jacob Friedman Holistic Garden is even more deeply rooted in sustainability. The Sun Club's partnership has enabled the addition of a greenhouse, solar power, rainwater collection and composting systems, a butterfly garden, apiary, and a chicken coop. These elements enhance the Garden's contributions to the Rice community and demonstrate the positive impact of gardening on its broader ecosystem.


Garden Club of Houston



The Garden Club of Houston has played an integral role in supporting the Betty and Jacob Friedman Holistic Garden's mission of making gardening accessible to people of all ages and abilities. People with disabilities are a special group of potential gardeners. Thanks to a grant funded by the Garden Club of Houston, we were able to purchase specialized gardening tools that can be used to make gardening possible or more comfortable for people who have physical disabilities. These enabling tools are now featured in a display case near the Garden's main entrance so that visitors and volunteers can learn about and use these enabling tools.