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Defining community gardening

  • Subject: [cg] Defining community gardening
  • From: Don Boekelheide dboekelheide@yahoo.com
  • Date: Fri, 7 Nov 2003 16:24:13 -0800 (PST)

Hi, all, and Amanda,

Excellent question. I've been playing with defining
'community garden' and 'community gardening' for a
couple of days now, but it isn't as easy as it looks.
I'll send a 'real' reply as soon as I'm happy enough
with my words to share them. I think I'll also post
Amanda's question to the internation CG list. I
suspect there are 'global' and  'North American'
definitions.

Meanwhile, I'm hoping more people will reply. I'm very
curious about this, too.

At this point, I'm playing with:

Community gardening cultivates community through
gardening, and gardening through communities.

Both 'community' and 'gardening' are essential to
community gardening. Community gardening puts
community first. Without gardening, community
gardening doesn't exist. 

(In this, I respectfully differ from Jack, who sees
community building as unquestionably the primary
function of community gardening. Which illustrates my
point - community gardening both needs and makes room
for the Jacks (community organizers with a deep
respect and affection for gardening), the Dons
(hort/aggie types with deep respect and interest in
community organizing), the Alritas (folks who want a
place they can grow tomatoes and be with friends) and
the Amandas (always asking questions! <:)) 

Community gardening embraces diversity as it
cultivates common ground.

In North America, community gardening means working
for greener, healthier and stronger communities
through cooperative gardening-based projects at the
grassroots level.

CGs are cooperative efforts, even Ďallotment gardensí
of individual plots. Community gardens involve shared
space, shared effort and shared benefits.

I haven't had this much fun since trying to define
'sustainable' (as in 'sustainable agriculture') a
'few' years ago in grad school!

Enough for now - can't wait to see your definitions.
And, Amanda, how about sending us _your_ definition in
a week or so (to not bias your respondents)? By
Thanksgiving? Again, thanks for a wonderful question.

Don Boekelheide
Charlotte, NC

>   1. definition of community garden (Amanda Maria
> Edmonds)

> Date: Wed, 5 Nov 2003 14:59:06 -0500
> From: Amanda Maria Edmonds <aedmonds@umich.edu>
> To: community_garden@mallorn.com
> Subject: [cg] definition of community garden

> Here's a question for everyone...
> 
> If you had to define community garden/-ing in one or
> two sentences, how 
> would you do it?  I'm curious how people's
> definitions vary.
> 
> :)
> Amanda


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