Putting domestic gardens on the agenda using empirical spatial data: The case of Flanders

Valerie Dewaelheyns, Elke Rogge, Gulinck Hubert

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    Spatial data are considered to be an essential entry point to get domestic gardens on the agendas of land use monitoring, spatial planning and environmental policies. As a green facet of urbanization, gardens cover a substantial part of land all over the world. Moreover, domestic gardens deliver several ecosystem services. The sustainability turn in planning however focuses on densification. In densification scenarios, planners could consider domestic garden area as a land reserve. Yet, due to a lack of data they would be ill-informed on the domestic garden services and potentials and not be able to make well-founded choices. So, the strategic value of domestic gardens remains largely unquestioned. By developing and applying a mixed methodology that combines an existing land use map with empirical data, this study provides data and insights on the spatial coverage, distribution and growth of domestic garden area in Flanders (the northern region of Belgium). The results show that 8% of the Flemish area is covered by domestic gardens, as well as 21% of the total area of Flemish residential cores. The highest concentrations are found in peri-urban areas and around ribbon developments. About 8% of the garden area that existed in the period 2002e2005 was new compared to the period 1988e1990 and occupied mainly former agricultural land (90%). The results clarify the regional significance of domestic gardens in terms of spatial coverage. The developed mixed methodology made the domestic garden theme analysable. The insights offer an entry point for a debate on the strategic value of domestic gardens.
    Translated title of the contributionPrivétuinen op de kaart zetten met behulp van empirische ruimtelijke data: gevalstudie Vlaanderen
    Original languageEnglish
    JournalApplied Geography
    Pages (from-to)132-143
    Number of pages12
    Publication statusPublished - 2014


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