Agriculture  |  Successes  |  28.03.2013

Sharing Organic Gardens: My Land, Your Hands, Our Produce

“Huertos compartidos” (Shared gardens) is an initiative from the Spanish NGO Reforesta which aims  to bring in contact people that want to grow a garden but don’t have the land for it, with those who own a land and are willing to temporarily give it away in exchange of sharing the harvest.

“Huertos compartidos” is a virtual community created to help people that want to grow their own food to get in contact with owners of suitable lands for agriculture that are not being cultivated.  This initiative tries to promote urban horticulture, the recovery of traditional orchards, organic farming, local food production, food sovereignty and cooperation and solidarity within societies. 

Although it is a quite recent initiative the “Huertos compartidos” community already has 600 members working or supplying gardens in several Spanish villages and towns. Their website presents a google-map of Spain with all the current shared gardens, and with those people interested in either cultivating land or supplying land for agriculture. There are also other ways of cooperating in this network, such as sharing knowledge on organic farming, financially supporting the project or generally exchanging ideas and best practices on organic farming and cooperative societies.  

How does the exchange functions?

A land searcher or a land provider has to first register on the website and fill in the corresponding forms. In order to access the users networks you will have to pay a one time fee of 2 euros, which will grant you access to the  the list of  people offering or asking for lands, divided by Spanish provinces. 

If you find someone offering or asking for la garden in your own town or nearby you can get in contact and sign a contract provided by “Huertos Compartidos”. The core demands of the  contract are: 

  • The garden has to be organic
  • The exchange has to be in-kind (no money exchange)  - mainly by sharing the harvest. 
  • Harvest sale is not allowed, all the crops has to be for self-consume. 

Building a community 

“Huertos compartidos” has also built a virtual community where members can have an own profile. Like this, via the community, you can get in touch with people interested in ecological gardening, share good practices, upload your pictures and videos and even share organic recipes using produce from  your own harvest. 

In addition, this community is now starting a Social and Ecologic club to organise trainings on agro-ecology and agro-tourism and a network of schools to teach how to grow organic harvests. “Huertos Compartidos” also have a digital newspaper that puts together opinions, ideas and good practices on organic agriculture

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