AN AMUSING EXCHANAGE ON LIFE & ALLOTMENT/COMMUNITY GARDENING
- Subject: [cg] AN AMUSING EXCHANAGE ON LIFE & ALLOTMENT/COMMUNITY GARDENING
- From: Adam36055@aol.com
- Date: Fri, 17 Dec 2004 13:54:34 EST
Subj: QUESTION ON COMMUNITY GARDENING
Date: 12/17/04 12:39:31 PM Mid-Atlantic Standard Time
Sent from the Internet (Details)
Adam-Thanks for the great insight.
I am now torn assunder from my assumption that in some way Goodman percieved
the negative side-effects of 'over-planning' since he was a loose associate of
Ivan Illich. And his professed 'black flag anarchism.
' However, in trying to track down his un-cited citation, I came across, in
the National Archives boxes of NRPB (Nanl Rec Plnng Bord) a very interesting
'expose' of what people were doing during the big 'depression.' They (American
corpoartions and townships) were handing over potato seed and land to the
out-of-workers so that people could feed themselves. I could mail you the
you send Address.
So, my question becomes, that IF growing food personally, outside the
center-periphery system of rural-urban interface, is percieved as a GOOD
crisis, can it follow that it is a "good" ideally?, so that these 'central
planners' who are approached by contmporary 'people' who want to start a
start pro-garden policy within a polity, can use history of the perception
and acts of the 'good' as an argument from tradition?
Go to geocities.com@haywardcg to see the organization I am associated with. I
follow your comments on the ACGA listserve carefully. Thank you very much for
your thoughtful reply (although I did ask for some citations on the history
of allotment gardens, and I hate to press you rudely on this, but as you see
I'm a bit of a serious student on this issue, unofficially of course.)
You see, being in CA, we are watching what you all in the east and Europe
have already suffered from--so its particularly irksome to not have learned
history in regards to making mistakes--this corporate 'housing for profit' is
creating fresh havoc here--watching not "housing by people" which ended in the
1940's--but stuff that pops up by profit 'housing FOR people."Also, I
remember 'empty lots' to be places of create mystery and joy as a kid--a
'waste' that seemed to be a law beyond the law.
Thank you for your note. It just happens that I'm at home today, waiting for
a plumber, the cable TV guy, and for a messengered envelope of hack-work
editing work from a publisher that should keep me busy though the weekend. My
phone just rang, and more stuff is on the way from another lady who needs
proof-read which should keep me busy for another day.
As we say in NY, it's a great life if you don't weaken, and thanks for the
A load of laundry is washing , I have the time to give you a more extensive
answer than I might have otherwise. But I won't have the time when the
arrives, so here goes nothin'.....
As you can see, I've clicked on your link, and gotten your e-mail, but not
your website. Please send the web link to me for your organization.
The corporate report interests me, but I'm not surprised that the large
corporations handed out potato seed to starving folks. The people in
especially in a time when things were bad probably thought," Look at our
customers, we can't have them starve - they'll never buy from us again. Let's
hand out potato seed to keep 'em going. They'll see that it came from us, and
they'll remember. I was hungry once, gratitude builds a brand. And I can look
at the minister in church and feel like I'm not a black-hearted heathen."
I see lots of corporate types show up during the holidays at soup kitchens
that I've worked, and dropping off clothes at local "clothes wardrobes," and
coat drives. We all have to work for a living, and the label, "corporate," on
somebody's lapel doesn't negate the humanity of the person who's wearing it.
all have to make a living, and none of us is perfect. A city is made up of
inperfect people. The garden where I volunteer is filled with imperfect people
including me. The wonderful thing about community gardening is that the sum,
garden is always greater than the whole.
A relative of my late wife's was fed by a strong arm guy, gunman and
bootlegger named Abner "Longy" Zwillman, who kept a Newark soup kitchen going
own dime througout the whole Depression. Maybe Zwillman felt guilt, maybe he
felt a latent social responsibility, but he managed to feed thousands of
he didn't have to. The world has more than a few people like him. We sure
could use more.
All you can say is, "thank you."
Re-community garden policy.
This 2002 South African Paper - "The German allotment gardens - a model for
poverty alleviation and food security in Southern African Cities, by A.W.
Drescher is in English, and splendid. And if you go into the ACGA archives,
find pieces on South African community gardens and food security. And of
course, a web search on South African community gardens will give you more.
A small bibliography on allotment gardens in English.
David Crouch is Professor of Cultural Geography, Leisure and Tourism at Derby
University in England. He has also written blue papers on the future of
allotments for English government, on the local and national level.
From the Derby University website:
"David Crouch has won a contract of #70,000 from the Office of the Deputy
Prime Minister to undertake a national survey of allotments, community gardens
and city farms, a component of the Government`s databases on public open
in England. This updates the Survey he made in 1996. and iis extended to
include city farms and community gardens. Peter Rivers of Research Evaluation
Services plays a key role in designing and delivering the Questionnaire and
SPSS database. There are 9,500 sites of these categories in England, owned or
managed by about 3,500 local councils and voluntary groups, involving some one
third of a million households. The Report will be delivered in December 04."
Contact: Professor David Crouch (email firstname.lastname@example.org phone 01332
Crouch, David, Ward, Colin: "The Allotment - Its Landscape and Culture."
London: Five Leaves Publications - 2003 -ISBN: 0 - 907123-91-0 ( Good book on
English Allotment Garden Culture.)
Two practical books on allotment gardening that are applicable to cg'ers as
Foley, Caroline: "The Allotment Handbook, " London: New Holland Publishers -
2004 - ISBN: 1-84330-583-6
Foley, Caroline: "Practical Allotment Gardening: A guide to growing fruit,
vegetables and herbs on your plot," London: New Holland Publishers - 2002
This is a new favorite of mine:
Ed. Pollock, Michael: "The Royal Horticultural Society: Fruit & Vegetable
Gardening, "London: Dorland Kindersley - 2002 - ISBN: 0 - 7513 - 3683 - 1
I believe in keeping things simple.
I appreciate your studies, and have full confidence in your ability to
research any cites you need on allotment gardens. There is an extensive
that you can access on-line, via inquiries to European allotment garden
organizations. I believe that the sustaining of community gardens depends on
things. If you're in a city, and this can be either a US, European Socialist,
Communist, Asian, Islamo-Fascist or whatever, you have to be part of the land
use decision making process. The city is it's own government, which dates
back to when cities were states. And all land uses have to either justify
themselves by utility to the city, or by political expediency. This runs
This is why community gardeners have to have contacts with, and positive
interactions with of the local power structure, either through neighborhood
councils, local political clubs, gardening clubs, charitable organizations,
the sponsorship of candidates,through campaign contributions, in cash or
volunteer time, to electeds who are involved with local land use decisions.
And sometimes they leave you alone, support you in your land use battles, and
in the case of the Clinton Community Gardens, even sponsor pro-community
garden legislation. And in the case of some community gardens, they even
to throw funding dollars, soil amendments and suggest that "helping out the
garden," is a good thing.
Commissar, Citycouncilman, Minister or Mullah, with community gardens, with
the price of land being what it is, it's always great for a community garden
have good relations with Casablanca's prefect of police.
Please feel free to go to our website and read the pages carefully. Clinton
Community Garden . We've come up with some answers that have worked for us.
If it's a wheel that will fit on your wagon, please feel free to use our
blueprints - nothing worse than re-inventing the wheel.
I have a long lecture on this topic, which I delivered at the 2002 ACGA
Conference which I can share with you which fleshes out the Hell's Kitchen
to the problem of community garden sustainability in cities.
All you have to do is ask.
The package just got delivered, my life is bodice rippers for the weekend.
Pray for me!
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