DUG Garden Sign Policy

DUG provides gardens with one (1) main garden sign, which is consistent in appearance with the rest of the signs throughout the DUG garden network. The main garden sign highlights the name of the garden, highlights the contact information for the DUG headquarters, and lists sponsors who helped build the garden. DUG works closely with garden leadership and the garden’s property owner to develop the content for the main garden sign.

An example of a DUG main garden sign, 30 x 36”

An example of a respect garden sign, 18 x 15”

DUG also provides a pair of smaller “Respect our Garden” signs, with one in English and the second in Spanish. These signs are pre-made and standardized and cannot be altered with additional languages, design, or messaging.

DUG will replace (at no cost to the garden) the main garden sign and pair of respect signs if any of the three are damaged or unreadable. The cost of theses signs are included in our garden construction budgets, and are therefore paid for by those funding sources. If a garden wishes to replace a legible sign or have multiple DUG-branded signs at their location, we can add these requests to our production queue at the garden’s expense:

  • $270 for a main garden sign,
  • $100 for an additional pair of respect signs, and
  • $40/hour for any additional staff design time that might be required.

If you would like to have your garden’s sign replaced or if you would like additional signs to be added to our production queue, please fill out a request here. If you are requesting a replacement, please upload a picture of your current sign so we can prioritize its replacement on the basis of its condition.

If your garden has decided to create additional signs of your own design, please send a copy of the draft language you intend to use on the sign(s) to DUG’s Director of Garden Support for final approval. This is required because DUG is typically the garden’s land use agreement holder with the property-owner, and as such is ultimately responsible for the appropriateness of any signage content.

Garden Sign Design Process

Design: DUG uses the same template for every main garden sign, ensuring a consistent and recognizable appearance across our Denver Metro garden network. Each sign is customized with regard to the unique garden name, year established, sponsors and partners.

Logos: Sponsors and partners who have donated more than $1,000 (financially or in-kind donations) are eligible to be included in the blue space at the bottom of the sign. Logos added to the sign need to be high quality white logos with a transparent background. If this version of the logo doesn’t exist, it must be created prior to inclusion on the sign. DUG often spends significant time tracking down appropriate logos and helping to convert them to white with a transparent background, which significantly slows down the sign design process. In cases where a high quality logo is unavailable and can’t be created by the sponsor or partner, DUG is capable of producing one to the quality required for the sign, but this additional work adds time to the process as well.

Approval: Each new main garden sign must undergo a lengthy review and approval process to ensure that the sign is complete and accurate. This often requires one or more revisions to the sign content and arrangement. The review and approval process involves the garden leaders and property-owner partners, as well as the DUG staff members most familiar with the garden and its development history. Once the sign design is approved by all of the parties, DUG sends the completed sign design to our printer as part of batch of 10 signs to save on shipping costs. Prior to sign production, DUG works with the printer to confirm that the sign design file was received correctly. (Each batch of ten signs often includes a mixture of new gardens, existing gardens without a sign, and gardens with a damaged or illegible sign).

Printing: Sign production takes approximately three weeks to complete from the time that DUG and the printer confirm that the sign design file was received correctly, to the time when the printer is ready to ship the sign to DUG, from their production factory in Pennsylvania, as part of the next batch of ten. (The reason DUG’s sign printer is located in Pennsylvania is due to the fact that the company we use previously bought out the trusted Denver printer that DUG has worked with for years but has retained the same production process and quality product).

Installation: Once we receive the signs from the printer, we notify garden leaders that they are available for pick-up, at which time we provide the hardware required to attach the sign to the garden fence, and simple verbal instructions on how to do so. If a sign is not picked up, DUG staff will install the signs on the basis of our field staff’s availability. In these cases, and in the absence of input from garden leaders, we will use our judgment in determining the ideal location for the sign(s).

What can I do to expedite the process?

The two primary issues that slow down the sign production process the most include:

(1) slow response times from garden leaders, partners and sponsors during the sign content review and revision process; and (2) obtaining and preparing quality logos from sponsors. To expedite this process, we encourage garden leaders to facilitate prompt responses from everyone involved at their end, including ensuring that high quality logos are provided to DUG in a timely fashion.