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UK: Residents rise up against’ plans to build over London’s oldest allotments

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alnorth
Northfields Allotments.

Northfields Allotments plotholders have been informed by Pathways in recent weeks of their intentions to build over at least 10% of the nearly 200-year-old site, with further plans to construct a mix of social and private housing.

By Luke Bartlett
They is Local London
Sept 16, 2016

Excerpt:

Francesca Bussey, Northfields resident and allotment owner, said: “We live in a social housing flat with no access to a garden of our own.

“In 18 months my daughter and I have transformed the plot from weeds and brambles to our own little patch of heaven.

[Read more →]

September 25, 2016   No Comments

UK: Hucknall Allotment Holders Searching for Historic Records – begun in 1840’s

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hucknall
Aerial shot of gardens on either side of bypass. Click on image for larger file.

The gardens date back to the time of the Land Enclosures in the 1840’s when the land was given to poor cottage holders of Hucknall by the Duke of Portland.

By Pam Wilkinson
Dispatch
Sept. 14, 2016

Excerpt:

Secretary Pam Wilkinson said: “We would like to record and present the history of this site and are asking for any stories, photos artefacts from the families of Hucknall.

“Generations of Hucknall families have since rented the allotments to provide much needed food for themselves and their families.

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September 21, 2016   No Comments

Eden Gardens Allotment, Whitefield, UK welcomes the public

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onions
Hannah, aged 12 and dad Gareth Evans with the onions they grew and are entering for a show.

The mayor and consort had the time of their lives and even wanted to sign up for our forthcoming Green Gym where, with the help of volunteers, we’ll plant hundreds of daffodils on the adjacent green.

By Sarah Yates
Bury Times
Sept 1, 2016

Excerpt:

The sale of seasonal vegetables, free-range eggs, garden plants and hanging baskets raised money to go towards the allotments, Pimhole Animal Sanctuary and a local charity which is yet to be decided.

Homemade cakes, tea, coffee, jams, pickles and chutneys were also popular at the allotment café.

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September 8, 2016   Comments Off on Eden Gardens Allotment, Whitefield, UK welcomes the public

New £50,000 allotments opened in Edinburgh

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scothar
Edinburgh’s Victoria Park allotments, formerly a council-managed bowling green, has been turned into a leafy crop of flowers, vegetables and fruit. Grower Colin Finlayson and his runner beans.

There are 16 “mini” allotments on-site, along with a toilet and communal storage unit, plus a community plot for use by pupils of the neighbouring Trinity Academy

By Brian Donnelly
Herald Scotland
Sept 1, 2016

Excerpt:

Retired teacher Colin Finlayson managed to secure an allotment from the new batch after nine years on the waiting list.

He said there are benefits on top of having the healthy fresh produce he has grown such as potatoes, leaks, raspberries and strawberries.

[Read more →]

September 7, 2016   Comments Off on New £50,000 allotments opened in Edinburgh

Ireland’s ‘Thank Potato’ Growers

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thpota
Andrew Douglas, with his potato plants of many different varieties. ‘Thank Potato’ potato collection is grown in up-cycled water cooler bottles and artificial grass off cuts, utilising waste stream materials to house and grow our potato plants.

Our main permanent feature is the growing and harvesting of over 180 different heritage and heirloom potatoes on the rooftop of a secondary school in Dublin city centre.

From UrbanFarm.ie
Thank Potato

Excerpt:

Why grow Potatoes as an urban food project?

The potato is the fourth most important food in the world. But so far, it has not featured prominently in the debate on food security. The potato crop is of key importance in that it provides high nutrition and is an adaptive species for climate change. Potatoes use less water per nutritional output than all other major food sources.

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September 6, 2016   Comments Off on Ireland’s ‘Thank Potato’ Growers

Italy: University of Bologna has launched the study SustUrbanFoods

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sutfa

Urban gardens, community gardens or small companies, the number of urban farming areas is growing quickly. But what are the environmental and social benefits that these initiatives can bring to cities?

Italy Research
Source Università di Bologna
Publication date 08/26/2016

Excerpt:

“In cities such as Bologna, urban agriculture is blooming using vacant land in city centres, available areas in the suburbs or unused spaces on and between buildings. These urban food systems are commonly associated with environmental, social and economic benefits and SustUrbanFoods aims to develop an interdisciplinary methodological framework to assess their sustainability”, explained Esther Sanyé-Mengual, researcher at the University of Bologna, who follows the project. The final goal of the initiative is to provide tools and data for supporting policies and decisions towards local and green economies. In particular, SustUrbanFood aims to assess the sustainability of urban food systems with reference to the three dimensions: environment, society and economy.

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September 3, 2016   Comments Off on Italy: University of Bologna has launched the study SustUrbanFoods

‘Greenside Up’ and Community Gardening in Ireland

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grensd
Photo of Dee Sewell.

I’m also promoting the idea of workplace gardens to encourage business’ to use some of the land or roof space they have and encourage office bound staff to get outside and grow.

By Dee Sewell
Greenside Up
Teaching Growth. Teaching Green
Aug 2016
From Food For Cities Listserv

I am a horticulturalist teaching adults how to grow food in Ireland and volunteering as a founder member and chairperson of Community Gardens Ireland.

I started ‘Greenside Up’ back in June 2009 with the idea of visiting and teaching people in their own gardens who wanted to grow food without chemicals but weren’t sure how. The recession was beginning to take hold and it soon became apparent that group workshops for adults would be the most cost effective way for people to learn rather than private consultations. I created a basic programme that could be delivered in health food stores and village halls and then applied to become a tutor with my local adult Education Training Board delivering ‘hobby’ gardening courses.

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August 30, 2016   Comments Off on ‘Greenside Up’ and Community Gardening in Ireland

Dublin: Derelict site transformed into thriving community garden

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bef
aft
The Mud Island community garden in Dublin. Before and after.

For 200 years up to the middle of the last century it was a locality of evil repute, “inhabited by a gang of smugglers, highwaymen, and desperadoes of every description”

By Brian Pelan
View Digital
November 17, 2015

Excerpt:

Following a two-year campaign by residents and the development of a clear proposal and committee structure, a yearly license was eventually granted by the local council to Mud Island. Since then the site has been cleared and leveled, raised beds built for vegetables, fruit bushes and trees, a polytunnel and water harvesting system erected and flower garden and sitting area created.

[Read more →]

August 30, 2016   Comments Off on Dublin: Derelict site transformed into thriving community garden

In Germany’s major cities, young families, nature lovers and amateur gardeners are increasingly taking up urban gardening

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slumClick on image for larger file.

In cities like Berlin, Bonn, Freiburg and Cologne, these gardens have become lively social habitats.

DW
Aug 2016

‘Is this a slum?’ (referring to photo above.)

Allotment gardens are typical of Germany. City dwellers without their own outdoor space are fond of these plots, where they plant their own organic veggies or just enjoy the nice weather. Looking at the wooden huts in these gardens, some foreigners wonder whether they’ve ended up in a slum. According to law, people are not allowed to actually live in these huts – but that doesn’t stop some people.

[Read more →]

August 23, 2016   Comments Off on In Germany’s major cities, young families, nature lovers and amateur gardeners are increasingly taking up urban gardening

Professional urban agriculture and its characteristic business models in Metropolis Ruhr, Germany

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caput1 Click on image for larger file. Institution: Institut für RealienkundeProvider: KulturpoolProviding Country: austriaCreation Date: 1716 Gemüsegarten, Vegetable garden.

Agriculture plays a significant role in Metropolis Ruhr cultivating about one-third of the metropolitan area, but on-going loss of farmland and short-term lease of land affect farms considerably by complicating access to land.

By Bernd Pölling, , Marcus Mergenthaler , Wolf Lorleberg
Land Use Policy
Volume 58, 15 December 2016, Pages 366–379

Abstract:

‘Low-cost specialization’, ‘differentiation’, and ‘diversification’ are three overarching business models of professional urban agriculture in developed countries. Manifold city-adjusted farm activities belong to these business models resulting in the characteristic farm heterogeneity of urban areas. This paper makes use of the business models as tool for a geo-statistical analysis to spatially investigate farming patterns in reference region Metropolis Ruhr, Germany. Additional farm interviews substantiate findings of the geo-statistical analysis by focusing on horticulture as a common farm activity towards ‘low-cost specialization’, direct marketing and participatory farming belonging to ‘differentiation’, and equestrian services as a representative of the ‘diversification’ business model.

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August 19, 2016   Comments Off on Professional urban agriculture and its characteristic business models in Metropolis Ruhr, Germany

Spain – Garden Inside: Communication, Representation and Transformation in Seville’s Urban Gardens

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Jardin Interior : Garden Inside from Christopher Yap on Vimeo.

A short participatory film made with producers across two urban community gardens in Seville, Spain

Christopher Yap
PhD Candidate and Participatory Video-Maker
Coventry University Centre for Agroecology, Water and Resilience

Excerpt:

In May and June 2016, urban producers in Huerto del Rey Moro (HRM) and Parque de Miraflores (Miraflores) engaged in a participatory action research process, using participatory video to explore the themes of communication and transformation within and between the two gardens. HRM is a squatted permaculture garden (huerto okupado) in Macarena, in the old centre of Seville. A committed collective of younger and older food growers maintains the open and democratic space, used by women, men, girls, and boys from across the city—building new forms of self-organization and reconnecting with the land for sustainable food production. Miraflores, in Las Almenas in the north of Seville, was formerly a dump site for construction debris during the city’s rapid expansion in the 1960s and 1970s. Reclaimed by a mobilized community in the 1980s, the garden is now a tranquil and productive space. Retired gardeners work alongside school groups to grow organic vegetables, and preserve and share knowledge. The two gardens are approximately three kilometers apart, but prior to this video-making project, there was only minimal communication between the sites.

[Read more →]

August 16, 2016   Comments Off on Spain – Garden Inside: Communication, Representation and Transformation in Seville’s Urban Gardens

Bank of Scotland staff swap calculators for gardening gloves to help community allotment

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scotb

“It was a huge amount of work carried out by the team and just shows what a bit of effort and pulling together can achieve.

By Kieran Beattie
The Press and Journal
23 July 2016

Excerpt:

A team of Aberdeen bank staff swapped their calculators for gardening gloves to bring the green shoots of recovery to a community allotment scheme in the city.

Volunteers from Bank of Scotland on Albyn Place built footpaths, marked out garden spaces, trimmed hedges and generally made the Cummings Park site more attractive.

[Read more →]

July 29, 2016   Comments Off on Bank of Scotland staff swap calculators for gardening gloves to help community allotment

UK: How we founded Croydon’s first rooftop community garden

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croydCroydon is a large town in south London, England, the principal settlement of the London Borough of Croydon. It is located 9.5 miles south of Charing Cross.

The rooftop cinema-garden will be here till the end of the summer when hopefully we’ll harvest and plan for spring.

By Joyce Veheary
The Croydon Citizen
22nd July, 2016

Excerpts:

On the rooftop of the Fairfield Halls NCP carpark, together we’ve created Croydon’s only rooftop community garden and with advice from @CroydonGardener, who specialises in ‘no-dig’ gardening, we’ve built raised beds full of veggies. Local businesses such as craft brewers Volden Brewery have donated spent hops to create compost, lavender has been lent from Mayfield lavender fields and individual locals have generously given soil and garden paraphernalia, making it a real community effort.

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July 27, 2016   Comments Off on UK: How we founded Croydon’s first rooftop community garden

10 Essential Allotment Gardening Tools

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peaf
Burgon & Ball Seed and Plant Spacing Rule.

UK’s National Allotments week from 18-24 August

By Richard Hood
The Independent
26 July 2016

Excerpt:

There’s still plenty of sowing and planting to be done in August – Swiss chard, spring onions and spring cabbages can all be sown now, and if you are quick about it, you should just be able to squeeze in a few fast maturing carrots. And to ensure your veg rows crop in precise, regimental, envy-inducing lines, you’ll need one of these. This ruler is made from sturdy beech wood, and comes inscribed with recommended plant spacings – perforated with poke holes for pinpoint sowing. A smaller, 30cm rule is available, but veg growers will get more use from the metre length version.

[Read more →]

July 27, 2016   Comments Off on 10 Essential Allotment Gardening Tools

Why Copenhagen Residents Want to Live on Urban Gardens

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dvasweDavid Skat Nielsen on his colony garden. (Lynsey Grosfield)

High rents are driving some Danes to not-quite-legal cabins and cottages.

By Lynsey Grosfield
City Lab
Jul 12, 2016

Excerpt:

For several years now, David Skat Nielsen has been cultivating a 7,400-square-foot patch of land on the island of Amager, in the greater Copenhagen area. Here, he pays 900 DKK ($133 USD) per month to get away from the stresses of apartment living, plant some fruit trees, build a greenhouse, and generally bask in the stillness of a hedged-in green space. Due to zoning restrictions, he can only live on the property for six months of the year, but he’s part of a growing group of Danes that would like to make these minimalistic garden lots into full-time homes.

[Read more →]

July 17, 2016   Comments Off on Why Copenhagen Residents Want to Live on Urban Gardens