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Re: history of 'organic' in community gardens

  • Subject: Re: [cg] history of 'organic' in community gardens
  • From: Adam36055@aol.com
  • Date: Fri, 15 Nov 2002 09:05:13 EST


You may find that going to the ACGA website and reading through it will 
answer alot of your questions:  <A HREF="http://www.communitygarden.org/";>
American Community Gardening Association</A>  . The links to community garden 
organizations throughout the US, Canada and abroad can give you an 
extraordinary amount of background on community garden horticultural and 
sociological organization.  Contacting  these folks can get you the real 
skinny.  While most are usually very busy, the agricultural extension agents 
and program directors do respond to scholar queries.  Please be sure to thank 
them and acknowledge them in your paper.  Also, the ACGA is interested in 
collecting, in paper and digital form, all new community gardening 
scholarship.  Please contact Anna Maria Edmunds of the University of Michigan 
for more details on this.  Anna wears several hats on the ACGA board and 
probably can hook you up with the scholarship she has collected. Her direct 
e-mail is :     aedmonds@umich.edu.  

The Canadian City Farmer site is a must for any student of horticultural 
practices in community gardens and urban areas: <A 
HREF="http://www.cityfarmer.org/";>City Farmer</A>

You may want to also go to the archives of this listserve which are collected 
at the mallorn computing site. Follow the discussion strings.  There is much 
about community gardening organic practice here. 

My note:  While many community gardeners are "children of the sixties" and 
bought into organic practices as part of the zeitgeist of the time, there is 
no uniformity of practice, on a national basis, of organic methods in 
community gardens. In all seriousness, the professionals in COFA, NOFA and 
other organic certifying organization have worked hard to create a degree of 
consensus on best practices. Get any of these folks to tell you about their 
conferences and the battles to achieve a degree of standardization of organic 
practice would be a great piece of scholarship, in itself.  (What I've heard 
from people who attended these conventions  and have talked out of school has 
been fascinating - this would be a good book for someone to write.)

  Community gardeners are volunteers and often come to this avocation with 
nothing more than good intentions and a few Rodale publications in their 
backpacks.  Others, of course, are master gardeners with years of experience. 
 It really is a mixed bag.   Results and practices vary from city to city and 
often from one raised bed to another. 

For the purposes of your study, you may want to compare community gardening 
guidelines in a few cities and then visit a few gardens.  While most of us 
are pretty good about it, don't be suprised when some gardener tells you that 
they are organic when you find a bottle of Miracle-Grow in the garden shed.  
Questionnaires are good - but direct observation may give you some 
interesting results. 

Good luck with your work.

Adam Honigman
Clinton Community Garden
 <A HREF="http://www.clintoncommunitygarden.org/";>Clinton Community Garden</A>

The American Community Gardening Association listserve is only one of ACGA's services to community gardeners. To learn more about the ACGA and to find out how to join, please go to http://www.communitygarden.org

To post an e-mail to the list:  community_garden@mallorn.com

To subscribe, unsubscribe or change your subscription:  https://secure.mallorn.com/mailman/listinfo/community_garden

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