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Urban Planning for Community Gardens: What has been done overseas, and what can we do in South Australia?

aussieimageIllustration by Robin Tatlow-Lord

By Elise Harris
Email: eliseharris2@gmail.com
An Honours thesis submitted as part of a Bachelor in Urban and Regional Planning School of Natural and Built Environments University of South Australia
October 2008

Excerpts:

Abstract

Community gardens have been shown to have positive social, nutritional and educational benefits for their users, and improve the amenity, safety and patronage of the surrounding area. They also tie into wider themes of sustainability and food security. Despite these benefits, urban planners, as the keepers of land and determiners of land use, have had little to do with community gardens. This thesis will explain the benefits of community gardens and detail planning policies throughout the world that support community gardens. Lastly, recommendations will be made on how the South Australian planning system can better support community gardens.

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January 26, 2010   Comments Off on Urban Planning for Community Gardens: What has been done overseas, and what can we do in South Australia?

Opportunity for 10 Canadians to study urban agriculture in Cuba

cubatour
Permaculture Cuba! An Immersion Experience in Sustainable Urban Agriculture in the Heart of Cuba

For seven weeks in May and June of 2010, ten Canadians will have the opportunity to experience first hand the thriving urban agriculture and permaculture movements in Cuba. Based in the beautiful city of Sancti Spiritus, participants will work hand-in-hand with local leaders and practioners on a variety of fascinating projects producing food in the heart of the urban setting. Grounded in a model of partnership and collaborative learning, the program will include:

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January 26, 2010   Comments Off on Opportunity for 10 Canadians to study urban agriculture in Cuba

Drought driving rise in urban agriculture in Zimbabwe

hararePhoto: Tonderai Kwidini/IPS
Small-scale farmer Ruth Chikweya working on her land near Harare.

By Varaidzo Dongozi
26 Jan 2010
Reuters AlertNet

HARARE, Zimbabwe (AlertNet) – Olivia Chitingo has been a farmer most of her adult life.

As a communal farmer in Murehwa district, approximately 120 kilometres east of Harare, the 46-year-old over the years grew maize, both as a cash crop and for her own consumption.

From her two hectares of land, she managed to produce 16 tonnes of grain each season, which was then ground into sadza, Zimbabwe’s staple food.
Most of it she sold to Zimbabwe’s Grain Marketing Board and mobile milling companies, and from each harvest she earned an average of $4,240, enough to meet most of her and her family’s needs.

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January 26, 2010   Comments Off on Drought driving rise in urban agriculture in Zimbabwe

Vancouver Compost Demonstration Garden welcomes Winter Olympic visitors

gardenjan2010webPhoto by Michael Levenston. Larger image here (4MB)

This is January!

It’s January, there’s no snow in our Vancouver garden (it’s up on the surrounding mountains). We’ve been out in the mild weather sprucing up the place for visitors from around the world who are already arriving for the Winter Games which begin February 14.

Fresh mulch is spread on the garden paths (Elm and London Plane wood-chips donated by the Park Board), our cob (clay/sand/straw) tool shed covered by a green roof is on the left next to the recycled metal entrance gate; the building in the top right corner holds our compost toilet and the new “red dragon” electric compost bin; a large Bay Laurel tree sits in the centre front of the picture; the wood-chip paths lead through the back fence into our teaching area and beyond to yet another garden, which we’ve named the “Youth Garden” where our dry-stack stone keyhole garden is located.

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January 26, 2010   Comments Off on Vancouver Compost Demonstration Garden welcomes Winter Olympic visitors

Most WWOOFers come from urban, non-agricultural background

taiwanwwoofTaiwanese WWOOFers.

Network gives urban volunteers a taste of organic-farm living

A group that goes by the acronym WWOOF connects urban volunteers interested in natural food production with organic farms in need of help. Business is booming.

Author: Dany Mitzman
Deutsche Welle
25.01.2010

Ezster Matolcsi and her huband Fabrizio Romagnoli, a couple with two small children, run an organic farm called the Azienda Agricola Angirelle. It lies in the hills outside Bologna, Italy.

The two have been hosting volunteers from the World Wide Opportunities on Organic Farm, or WWOOF, for the past four years.

The WWOOF network was set up in England in 1971 by a London secretary named Sue Coppard; she wanted to create a way for city people to experience the countryside and support the organic farming movement at the same time. Volunteers – called wwoofers – offer their services in exchange for free board and lodging.

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January 26, 2010   Comments Off on Most WWOOFers come from urban, non-agricultural background