A toolbox for garden governance

Valerie Dewaelheyns, Eva Kerselaers, Elke Rogge

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    Abstract

    A substantial fraction of the open space in (peri-) urban and rural areas is covered by domestic gar-dens which support the delivery of multiple ecosystem services. Although individually they may lookinsignificant, the aggregation of domestic gardens and of gardening actions can be significant. Referringto ‘the tyranny of small decisions’, we launch the concept of a ‘resource by small gardening actions’: thepositive cumulative outcome of individual garden owners adopting pro-environmental gardening prac-tices. Using qualitative research, we gained a thorough insight into the barriers and levers related to thedevelopment of domestic gardens as a ‘resource by small gardening actions’. By combining the data fromexpert interviews with a design workshop addressing garden and landscape architects, and focus groupswith private garden owners, we identified eight barriers and nine levers. These levers are part of a ‘mixand match’ toolbox, allowing the development of tailor-made strategies for garden governance. Theseinsights increase the understanding on if and how private actors and their properties could become partof policy plans to support ecosystem services. This adds to the global understanding of the strategic valueof daily-life landscapes that exist all over the world.
    Original languageEnglish
    JournalLand Use Policy
    Volume51
    Pages (from-to)191–205
    Number of pages15
    ISSN0264-8377
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2015

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