Garden Secrets episode 1 – Urban Gardening: The experts who work the grounds of the Smithsonian Gardens share their secrets and offer advice to everyday home gardeners.
Meet the experts who make the Smithsonian Gardens a stunning living museum year-round. See how our horticulturists work tirelessly to overcome urban conditions and freezing temperatures. Learn how all gardeners, from amateur to seasoned, can use their secrets to make their own gardens grow.
Garden Secrets episode 1 – Urban Gardening
Urban agriculture, urban farming, or urban gardening is the practice of cultivating, processing, and distributing food in or around urban areas. Urban agriculture is also the term used for animal husbandry, aquaculture, urban beekeeping, and horticulture. These activities occur in peri-urban areas as well. Peri-urban agriculture may have different characteristics.
Urban agriculture can reflect varying levels of economic and social development. It may be a social movement for sustainable communities, where organic growers, “foodies,” and “locavores” form social networks founded on a shared ethos of nature and community holism. These networks can evolve when receiving formal institutional support, becoming integrated into local town planning as a “transition town” movement for sustainable urban development.
For others, food security, nutrition, and income generation are key motivations for the practice. In both scenarios, more direct access to fresh vegetables, fruits, and meat products through urban agriculture can improve food security and food safety.
Many communities make community gardening accessible to the public, providing space for citizens to cultivate plants for food or recreation. A community gardening program that is well-established is Seattle’s P-Patch. The grassroots permaculture movement has been hugely influential in the renaissance of urban agriculture throughout the world.
During the 1960s a number of community gardens were established in the United Kingdom, influenced by the community garden movement in the United States. Bristol’s Severn Project was established in 2010 for £2500 and provides 34 tons of produce per year, employing people from disadvantaged backgrounds.