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Community garden definitions

  • Subject: [cg] Community garden definitions
  • From: Don Boekelheide dboekelheide@yahoo.com
  • Date: Sun, 16 Nov 2003 17:39:37 -0800 (PST)

Hi, all,

I tried to forward these, but that may not have
worked. Forgive me it they come up twice.

These are the three definitions so far, in response to
Amanda's question, posted on the international CG

Don Boekelheide
Charlotte, NC


Definition of community Gardening.

Community gardening is merely a focus on the real
world of air water soil rocks plants and animals
rather than a focus on the built environments. Once
engaged and involved in community gardening people
immediately recognize the need to minimize the
introduction of pollutants into the landscape because
of the risk of damage. There is an immediate sense of
responsibility, and people often experience a sense of
peace and harmony in their world if their immediate
surroundings and companion life forms are vigorous and
self-sustaining. These effects are a function of the
landscape itself and require little or no
reinforcement by us. These effects support ongoing
enthusiasm for sustainable and environmentally
friendly practices.

Paul Totterdell
Canberra Australia


Here in the UK, the Federation of City Farms and
Community Gardens bases its evaluation of whether a
gardening project qualifies for voting membership on
whether the management of the project is demonstrably
and directly accountable to the local community. 
"Community", of course, is a social construct as well
as a geographical one.  Sometimes a project in a
low-income area may be demonstrably and directly
accountable to empowered middle-class people living
nearby who define themselves as the community. My job
when visiting projects that aspire to voting
membership is to sniff such anomalies out.

Richard Wiltshire
Research Officer


From: Dr. Robert J. Holmer
To: landuse@listserv.ruaf.org
Dear colleagues

McNair gives a good definition of "community gardens"
in her publication "The Garden City Handbook: How to
Create and Protect Community Gardens in Greater


Community gardens are defined as gardens where people
share the basic resources of land, water, and
sunlight. This definition includes both allotment and
common gardens. Allotment gardens are characterized by
a concentrated area consisting of several small
parcels of about 200 to 400 m2 that are assigned to
individuals or families who are usually organized in
an association. Allotment gardens differ from common
gardens in such a way that the parcels are cultivated
individually while in common gardens the overall area
is tended collectively by a group of people. 

Best regards

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

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