Urban environments offer various opportunities in an individualized society. At the same time they bear considerable risks, requiring adaptive demands due to a high complexity of external stimulation, arousing a strong need for restoration (Hartig, 2007).Attention restoration theory states that physical characteristics in natural environments support this process by evoking automatic attention and restoring focused attention (Kaplan, 1995). Small-scale natural environments in an urbanized society could actively support people’s physical activation, social contact and psychological well-being in an every day context.Urban gardening projects experienced a strong resurgence in Europe in the last years and could play a key role in an escape experience for urban dwellers searching restoration. A temporary project has been initiated at a former airport in Berlin, serving neighbor’s every day restoration by community gardening. On a 5000 m2 public space, about 1000 people with different cultural background built and planted raised plant beds. Additionally, they organized events such as community picnics and workshops on sustainable behavior.Due to the groundbreaking interest in the former airport area, several interdisciplinary studies serve the evaluation of the effects of self-organized community gardening on the social, physical and psychological level.In an explorative approach, qualitative half-structured interviews with initiators and participants are carried out at different stages during the first year after initiation of the project. Questioning the perception of the restorative and social aspects, the research aims to explore direct and indirect effects of community gardening. A focus is laid on the effect according to different economic, social and cultural background.Results show the relevance of restoration and additional factors such as meaning of place and identity processes. Participation and repeated social interactions in the project is shown to increase responsibility and empowerment of the protagonists.Results suggest that community gardening in the neighborhood can provide a base for low-threshold social support. The temporary character of the community garden is critically reflected.Discussing the results, the potential to enhance public health and social equity is promising. By activating people and serving their individual need for restoration, urban intercultural gardens provide an important opportunity to enhance quality of life for urban inhabitants. The positive effect of community gardening in a natural environment is enhanced by social interaction and self-organization. Spatial concepts such as place attachment and identity processes need to be considered carefully in future. Longitudinal designs are planned to represent the development of restoration, social interaction and empowerment processes. An outlook for planning concepts achieving the need for restoration of urban inhabitants is given.