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January 15, 2014

The secret of the secret garden

Perhaps in response to the ever quickening pace of life, there’s been a surge in interest in rebuilding a connection with the land and in particular in growing things – food, fruit, flowers. Whether it is for the more random approach of guerrilla gardening or the established allotment plot, demand is on the rise. But if you’ve never grown anything before, and you want to make a start, how does one actually go about it? Eva Schonveld explains how she and some friends started their secret garden in Portobello. 


Eva Schonveld

There are hundreds of ways to start a community garden, each one specific to its particular location and the group of people who want to make it happen, but I’m going to tell you how I did it, which will hopefully be useful.  If you have other experiences, please do comment on our website and share your story and any useful tips you’ve picked up along the way.

I’m part of my local Transition group, so we were looking for land specifically to grow food.  I was lucky, as likely pieces of land had already been identified through a survey we did as part of a Climate Challenge Fund grant.  The researchers had searched on google for open spaces in our area and followed up in person, finding out who the owner of the sites were and checking whether they might be up for them being used for community growing.  We ended up with 5 good sites, all very different, so we called a public meeting to see who might be interested in working on them and to think about how to get started.

To learn more about what Eva did next, click here