Main

Community Garden #1- In The Beginning

mp0906art1890It is early June here in Michigan and a friend of our family offered for us to share a community garden bed with her. She paid $25 for her bed and they gave her two extra beds since they were trying make sure all the plots were utilized this year. We usually do a vegetable garden in our backyard, but we are working on landscaping it this year and building a deck, so we decided that a community garden plot would be a good idea. I figured it might be nice to share our community garden experience and pictures as we move along this year. Since we are just starting I decided to look into community gardens briefly to get a better idea about the concept and origins. Bare in mind, I took the first reputable source that Google gave me so please don’t be offended if my history is not very thorough.

The Beginning– “Community gardens have been used in American cities since the 1890s, with the first gardens appearing in Detroit. During the initial phase of community gardening, a variety of groups, including social and educational reformers, along with those involved in the civic beautification movement, were responsible for promoting community gardening. Community gardens began as a way to provide land and technical assistance to unemployed workers in large cities and to teach civics and good work habits to youth.” [1]

1940’s Victory Gardens-  “The Victory Garden campaign during World War II encouraged people to grow food for personal consumption, recreation and to improve morale. After the war, only a few gardening programs remained, and it was these remaining programs that gave rise to the rebirth of community gardening in the 1970s.” [2]

1970’s Community Action- “The rebirth of community gardening in the 1970s was a response to urban abandonment, rising inflation, environmental concerns and a desire to build neighborly connections. Citywide organizations assisted people with acquiring land, constructing gardens and developing educational programming. Local residents, facing a myriad of urban problems, used gardens to rebuild neighborhoods and expand green spaces. Although common themes of food production, income generation, recreation, education and beautification still provided a strong rationale for gardening, a new focus was placed on rebuilding social networks and the infrastructure of blighted urban communities.” [3]

With better knowledge of where community gardens have come from and how important they have been to United States culture and urban communities, it is easy to understand why people are so passionate about preserving them. Lucky for me we have a great community garden within walking distance from where I live. Over the course of the gardening season I will talk about Humboldt Nutrients Natural line of products and how they can be utilized for success in an outdoor raised garden bed. I will also talk about pests, diseases, and what can be done naturally to prevent and or cure such issues. I will provide some pictures as we go along and hope that through all of this, it will be entertaining and possibly educational. Stay tuned!

 

Citations-

[1] Community Garden Toolkit, Missouri University Extension, http://extension.missouri.edu/p/MP906-4

[2] Community Garden Toolkit, Missouri University Extension, http://extension.missouri.edu/p/MP906-4

[3] Community Garden Toolkit, Missouri University Extension, http://extension.missouri.edu/p/MP906-4