Gardenshare – further info
This is an archive page and is no longer updated.
Sowing the seeds for a growing community
Many people in the Totnes area have underused gardens, whilst others have no access to a garden but would love the chance to grow their own food, herbs and flowers.
The Gardenshare service matches people who would like their garden used more productively with enthusiastic, committed local growers. Unloved plots can then grow salads, connections – even friends! The benefits for the garden owners include a share of the produce, the pleasure of seeing a lovely vegetable plot developing, and the satisfaction of being part of a sharing initiative.
Aims of the project
The project aims are to be a long-term community initiative, with people gardening the land year after year if possible. Every person who grows food is taking an important step towards greater local food resilience - in terms of food security and local self-sufficiency, but also in contributing to the great tradition of growing, propagating, seed-saving, and making links within the community. In global terms, if each home-grown leaf in the mouth means less oil used to grow, package, and transport our food to us, this impacts the huge demand for oil that leads the UK to wage illegal wars against oil-rich nations.
The project has had around 30 or so local growers. Most of these gardeners come back year after year to cultivate the same patch, having established a relationship and long-term agreement with the garden owner. The sharing of produce and land between gardeners and garden owners is helping build community-wide relationships and foster trust - let alone feeding well over 50 families with fresh veggies.
The gardenshare scheme was featured on BBC Southwest News in 2008...Click here to see the clip. Hugh Fearnley-Whittinstall also filmed an episode of River Cottage featuring the Gardenshare scheme. Click here to see an article about it that appeared in the local media. It also featured in Inspired Times in Spring 2010. Click here to read the article. - See here for their website.
In 2008 and 2009, the TTT gardenshare scheme also organised gardening courses in Totnes, training over 40 gardeners.
Want to set up a similar project in your area?
All the forms and certificates are downloadable. The only thing we ask is that you let us know you are using them and doing it - just so we can get a sense of how wide it is going... All the best!