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What is a community garden?

What is a community garden?

Community gardens are places where people come together to grow some of the food their families eat and to enjoy the conviviality of good company.

The gardens are found across Australia in big cities and country towns, in public parks and school grounds, and in other places. They offer fresh food and learning at the same time as they create a sense of place close to where the gardeners live.

Mapping gardens

The Community Garden Australia’s (CGA) map locates community gardens across Australia. 

The map is not a complete listing of community gardens, only those which have provided their details. The total number of community gardens in Australia is not known, however, the CGA map suggests that, since the first community garden in Australia came into existence in 1977, the number has grown significantly and continues to grow.

Types of gardens

There are different types of community gardens operated by a range of organisations. They adopt a range of management models:

  • COMMUNITY GARDENS — This is the common form.
    • Access: By general public.
    • Management: Self-managing.
  • NEIGHBOURHOOD CENTRE GARDENS
    • Access: By public associated with the neighbourhood centre. 
    • Management: By neighbourhood centre management.
  • SOCIAL HOUSING GARDENS
    • Access: Social housing residents.
    • Management: Self-managing.
  • RELIGIOUS INSTITUTIONS
    • Access: Many open to general public.
    • Management: Self-managing.
  • CITY FARMS
    • Access: By general public.
    • Management: City farm organisation.
  • COMMUNITY EDUCATION CENTRES
    • Access: By general public.
    • Management: Self-managing or management by community education centre.
  • FOOTPATH GARDENS
    • Access: By local residents.
    • Management: Self-managing.
  • SCHOOL GARDENS
    • Access: Either general public or exclusive to staff and parents of students.
    • Management: Community garden group in association with school.
  • COMMUNITY SUPPORTED AGRICULTURE
    • Access: people buy shares in thre farm’s projected harves in advance usually
    • Management: Farm with consumer members.

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