Author Topic: Starting a community agriculture project  (Read 5575 times)

Brett

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Starting a community agriculture project
« on: April 09, 2012, 03:32:24 PM »
These last few months I have been growing veg indoors. I live in a tiny flat and it's not enough for me. I want earth, real actual earth to play with. I was hit with the realisation that I may not have much in the way of outdoor space, but my neighbours in their houses with gardens do, so I figure it might be a good idea to try to set up a small community agriculture project on my street.

I'm wondering if anyone has any experience with CSAs or working in this type of arrangement? Also it'd be awesome if anyone could relate experiences with contacting neighbours/people you don't really know about projects and how best to go about getting folks involved. I think this could make an absolutely massive difference to everyone who chooses to get involved and I'm so passionate about people becoming independent and self-sufficient as well as building community. Any suggestions or stories people would like to share would be appreciated.

Cheers all.

AJ

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Re: Starting a community agriculture project
« Reply #1 on: April 09, 2012, 05:51:11 PM »
I've never done something like this, so I can't help you there. However, I have 3 acres of land and I would be super happy if some apartment dweller in my town offered to use some of it for a garden in exchange for sharing a bit of their bounty. You might try finding someone with a large undeveloped yard and see if they would be amenable to a similar arrangement. The worst they could say is no, right? :)

Brett

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Re: Starting a community agriculture project
« Reply #2 on: April 10, 2012, 12:18:35 AM »
I've never done something like this, so I can't help you there. However, I have 3 acres of land and I would be super happy if some apartment dweller in my town offered to use some of it for a garden in exchange for sharing a bit of their bounty. You might try finding someone with a large undeveloped yard and see if they would be amenable to a similar arrangement. The worst they could say is no, right? :)

I like this idea. I'm kinda doing it with my parents, but they live soooo far away it's not really going to work out the way I'd like. My first thought there was to trawl google earth looking for gardens that could be suitable..... It's too early for me to think properly. Cheers.

arebelspy

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Re: Starting a community agriculture project
« Reply #3 on: April 10, 2012, 08:45:21 AM »
I've never done something like this, so I can't help you there. However, I have 3 acres of land and I would be super happy if some apartment dweller in my town offered to use some of it for a garden in exchange for sharing a bit of their bounty. You might try finding someone with a large undeveloped yard and see if they would be amenable to a similar arrangement. The worst they could say is no, right? :)

I like this idea. I'm kinda doing it with my parents, but they live soooo far away it's not really going to work out the way I'd like. My first thought there was to trawl google earth looking for gardens that could be suitable..... It's too early for me to think properly. Cheers.

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gestalt162

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Re: Starting a community agriculture project
« Reply #4 on: April 10, 2012, 11:37:05 AM »
I hope the OP isn't confusing CSA with community gardens. CSAs are where the resulting produce is sold to CSA shareholders. Community gardens are just spaces to grow for yourself on public land. I think you're looking for a community garden, in which case try googling for community gardens in your city. Decent-size cities tend to have private organizations dedicated to such things.

Brett

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Re: Starting a community agriculture project
« Reply #5 on: April 10, 2012, 02:46:33 PM »
I hope the OP isn't confusing CSA with community gardens. CSAs are where the resulting produce is sold to CSA shareholders. Community gardens are just spaces to grow for yourself on public land. I think you're looking for a community garden, in which case try googling for community gardens in your city. Decent-size cities tend to have private organizations dedicated to such things.

I actually was confusing what I want to do with CSAs, but I'm not after a community garden either. I want to get each person on my street to use a tiny part of their garden space to grow something then everything goes into a box and split up so everyone gets a share of everything. Well, regardless of what it's called, that's what I want to do. Maybe I'll just have to figure things out as it goes along.

Cheers all.

slugsworth

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Re: Starting a community agriculture project
« Reply #6 on: April 10, 2012, 06:21:56 PM »
http://www.urbangardenshare.org/
 


also take a look on wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Garden_sharing I think there may be a similar site for the UK (I'm guessing your a brit)

Brett

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Re: Starting a community agriculture project
« Reply #7 on: April 11, 2012, 08:50:14 AM »
http://www.urbangardenshare.org/
 


also take a look on wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Garden_sharing I think there may be a similar site for the UK (I'm guessing your a brit)

Was it my spelling realisation with an 's' that gave me away? Cheers for the link.

grantmeaname

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Re: Starting a community agriculture project
« Reply #8 on: April 11, 2012, 09:12:07 AM »
... veg ... flat ... realisation ... neighbours ...Cheers all.

It was a hint, but I wouldn't say it was the only hint.

:)

spacecoyote

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Re: Starting a community agriculture project
« Reply #9 on: April 11, 2012, 11:49:53 AM »
My advice would be to plant extra of something(s) in your own space and share the bounty with your neighbors to get the conversation started. That way, they'll see that 1) it can be done, 2) you care enough to do it on your own, and 3) you're a nice person. Reciprocity should help take over after that...and if someone's not interested just ask if you can "borrow" a corner of their yard :)

When you say your neighbors have gardens, do you mean vegetables? Flowers? Something else? Or does the term garden in the UK mean something more like yard or lawn does in the US?

Brett

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Re: Starting a community agriculture project
« Reply #10 on: April 11, 2012, 04:10:06 PM »
... veg ... flat ... realisation ... neighbours ...Cheers all.

It was a hint, but I wouldn't say it was the only hint.

:)

Random swell of pride... I'd break into a verse of God Save the Queen, but I'm a republican, so that wouldn't be much use.

My advice would be to plant extra of something(s) in your own space and share the bounty with your neighbors to get the conversation started. That way, they'll see that 1) it can be done, 2) you care enough to do it on your own, and 3) you're a nice person. Reciprocity should help take over after that...and if someone's not interested just ask if you can "borrow" a corner of their yard :)

When you say your neighbors have gardens, do you mean vegetables? Flowers? Something else? Or does the term garden in the UK mean something more like yard or lawn does in the US?

Garden just means yard. It's our generic word. Hell we even use it when we're talking about tiny tiny spaces that are all concreted over. A lot of the people around here have nice sized gardens, I think, for just turning over a few square feet and seeing what can be done. I really love your idea of sharing what I can grow first. That's brilliant. We've got a street party planned for the diamond jubilee, maybe I'll see if I can put together something for that with food I've grown. Spacecoyote you're a genius.


spacecoyote

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Re: Starting a community agriculture project
« Reply #11 on: April 12, 2012, 07:27:52 AM »
Garden just means yard. It's our generic word. Hell we even use it when we're talking about tiny tiny spaces that are all concreted over.

Looks like I just learned something new. Haha, culture!

Spacecoyote you're a genius.

Well, I wouldn't go that far...I hope that idea works out for you, and if you're neighbors are interested you can share the 'Square Foot Gardening' method with them. If you're not familiar: http://www.squarefootgardening.com/ ...the guy who popularized the idea was an engineer back in the day and the approach is pretty sound. It's a good way to get decent yield from a small space without too much hassle. I found it a good way to get started since it focuses on starting small and building up your space and knowledge over time.

twinge

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Re: Starting a community agriculture project
« Reply #12 on: April 24, 2012, 06:32:12 AM »
The "Foods not lawns" movement has a lot of ideas about community involvement in a variety of projects: http://www.foodnotlawns.com

I'm not an expert on them, and there may be  certain flavor to their community approaches that may or may not fit your style, but I imagine they've developed diverse strategies that might be inspiring.

In my neighborhood, we've evolved an informal trade of vegetables.  It began with someone noticing our vegetable garden and me bringing them some surplus.  They then brought me some surplus in the presence of another neighbor and I shared some back with the two etc.  We did that with a few individuals sort of naturally but I think it "primed" the possibility for doing it in a more widespread way. 

Brett

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Re: Starting a community agriculture project
« Reply #13 on: April 25, 2012, 06:17:47 AM »
That's great. Ideally that'd be the set up I suppose, it occuring organically because it's just a good idea. Thanks for the link, definitely going to check them out now. :)

MudHut

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Re: Starting a community agriculture project
« Reply #14 on: April 30, 2012, 11:33:52 AM »
There is a gardening non-profit in the community I live and they have a number of resources for starting community gardens. See:

http://wasatchgardens.org/community/start-a-community-garden/startup-manual