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A shared vegetable garden in the city

Cultivate a plot of land with your neighbours!

Time to set up

One year



Investment cost


The solution

Use unoccupied spaces in the city to grow your own fruits and vegetables: this is possible with shared vegetable gardens.

The shared garden is designed and cultivated collectively by the inhabitants of a city or neighbourhood. This helps to create bonds of solidarity and to regain a certain autonomy of food.

Plus, it’s good for the taste buds, the wallet and the environment!

Who is it for?

  • I live in the city, I don’t have a garden and I want to create a vegetable garden close to home.
  • I am a city and I want to create shared gardens for all.
  • I am a collective/association that wants to create a shared garden.

Full PDF kit

Successful replications: 2


  • A motivated collective;
  • Seeds/seeds;
  • Gardening tools;
  • Soil/fertiliser/compost;
  • An association to be linked to
  • The keys to
    • Attach to a structure;
    • Make requests to find land
    • Establishing the rules of the collective
  • The basics in agriculture/permaculture;


Step 1: Finding land to grow

The ideal terrain is:

  • Untapped or waste-a-waste,
  • Pretty flat,
  • Close to home,
Step 2: Getting closer to the local/regional shared garden association

In each region, there is an association that deals with shared gardens.

This association will help you in the administrative process and to answer your questions

List of regional shared garden associations here > > ici

Step 3: Finding a team

It’s mainly in your neighborhood that you have to look. Introduce the project to your neighbours, in environmental protection associations ready for you…

Find out more about existing projects as well. Maybe you can join you building a shared garden already underway.

At the beginning you can only be a few people and by starting the work you will attract the curiosity of the neighbors who will surely join you to help you!

    Step 4: Set the rules of the garden

    It can be managed in different ways. So you have to set the rules for operation.

    Here is a template that will allow you to build an internal regulation quickly.

    Anyone wishing to join the garden will have to sign and respect this short regulation.

    An example of an internal regulation here > > ici

    >> Shared fonctionnement_Jardin rules

    Step 5: Acquiring the land

    There are two types of land that fall under different procedures to acquire them:

    Public land – request to the town hall.

    First, all you have to do is send a letter to the town hall to apply and initiate the procedure. A standard letter is available in the kit. Namely:

    • A graceful acquisition can be granted to you: this is the case for many vegetable gardens. But do you expect to pay certain costs: surveyor work(between 1.5 and 4 m2), notarial deed in particular.
    • Attach to this request a location map, a land map side as well as one or two photos.

    >> Information on the price of notarized deeds for donations here

    Private land – purchase/rental.

    Get closer to the owner and negotiate the price of the plot. Explain the end goal, he may be happy to help.

    >> City Council letter: request to acquire a plot,in the download kit

    >> Land maps alongside France are available here

      Step 6: Start landscaping

      Define the different spaces:

      • The plots
      • Water points
      • Location for a composter

      Even if at first it can be very simple it is possible to improve then: huts to store the equipment, space of conviviality (tables, benches …)

      To equip your land at a lower cost, recycle as much as possible!

      • Ask members to bring back all the material they want to share;
      • By tinkering with everyday objects, you can create bins with old crates, a greenhouse with salvaged windows, etc.;
      • Go to the resale sites between individuals.

      Step 7: Prepare the garden (weeding, soil improvement, flattening...)

      Gardening Encyclopedia: > >

      >> “3 youtube channels to see life in green”

      Step 8: Depending on the season, plant your first fruits and vegetables!

      >> See the calendar of seasons in the download kit.

      >> Gardening Encyclopedia:

      Step 9: Motivate gardeners and promote your garden around you

      You can organize many educational events, conferences, tours/tastings to attract new gardeners and inform about the benefits of shared gardens.

      • The maintenance of a vegetable garden is all year round. So you have to have someone available a little each week to maintain your plot and the common areas.
      • To raise awareness, to communicate to attract more gardeners through events.
      • Putting a very simple self-watering system with drip and a programmer – This system greatly reduces the time spent watering
      • Change fruits and vegetables to vary tastes.
      • You can create compost.


      Details of the figures can be found in our “sources” section below

      95% cheaper in your garden than in supermarket [2]

      • 1kg of carrot is: 2 euros at the purchase against 0.1 euros at the exit of the field [2];
      • Get free from time to time;
      • Produce vegetables at a lower cost;
      • Creating activities within the framework of the social and solidarity economy;
      • Seeking financial autonomy.

      1360km/person/year are covered for food purchases and out-of-home catering [1]

      • Reducing transportation for food;
      • Have the opportunity to grow organic and any type of variety;
      • Consuming local and seasonal;
      • Return of nature to the city – carbon sinks – heat sinks;
      • Conservation and preservation of biodiversity.

      Creating conviviality around fruits and vegetables

      • Creating a bond, of sharing between generations and cultures: it is open to all;
      • Learn gardening techniques and skills;
      • Create a shared resource that can help the most insecure;
      • Recovering autonomy on one’s diet.

      Precautions of employment

      • Long-term collective investment as gardening takes time and requires a permanent investment.

      They did it!

      2 successful replications

      LOS_DAMA (EUSALP) (Alpine Region)
      Creator of the solution

      See their website >

      The city of Trento (Italy)
      Creator of the solution

      “The goal is to promote shared gardens and showcase their social and ecological potential. These gardens are among the first stones for the construction of a green network, the rehabilitation of abandoned land and the preservation of biodiversity. »
      See their website >

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