A shared garden
The 19th district of Paris has the largest number of community gardens in the French capital: 19 out of a total of 80. Managed by local community associations, these cooperative gardens are a place to meet, playing an important role in improving human relations within the neighborhood.
Located at 57 Avenue de Flandre, La Serre aux Légumes (“vegetable greenhouse”) is a community garden which can be glimpsed behind the gates. Its micro conservation spaces welcome biodiversity. The garden is home to a pond for aquatic wildlife and an “insect hotel” among the vegetable plots. Public events and activities are organized, for example during the Garden Festival in late September. Two associations which
are members of the Main Verte( green fingers) program look after this garden.
The “Main Verte” (green fingers) programme run by the city of Paris facilitates the establishement of community garden projects for residents on public land. There are more than eighty community gardens located in the capital. Local community associations initiating and managing community gardens on city lands comply with the “Main Verte” programme’s regulations, which stipulate that these gardens be open to the general public on a regular basis, that the organisation of events should be open to all, and that the sites are managed in an environmentally sound manner. The Main Verte programme promotes environmentally friendly practices and on a local level, works towards the city’s policies for sustainable development.
At the heart of the Tanger-Maroc buildings (entrance 49 ter av. de Flandre) which were constructed in the 1960s hides a public garden. The Tanger-Maroc Garden is accessible via the Passage Marcel-Landowski. This garden has been commended for its ecological management, and is shaded by remarkable giant redwoods (Sequoiadendron giganteum). These ornamental trees were imported to Europe from the USA in the 19th century. Redwoods can reach 30 to 50 metres (98 to 168 feet) in height. They are also notable for their thick, spongy bark.
Behind the beech hedge is the “Colors and Scents Garden”; a collective, educational garden managed by a very active local community in the 19th district. This community works towards the embellishment of local life. As part of the gardening and biodiversity program, an insect spiral will be created, with the help of local children and adults. This new type of community garden is part of the green fingers program set up by the City of Paris.
Environmental management is based on methods adapted to the design and uses of each green space, as well as encouraging the biodiversity. The gardens’ appearance evolves with a variety of compositions including more natural plots so as to support wildlife habitats suited to common flora and fauna. Green spaces, primarily encouraging contemplation, leisure and relaxation, now also have the vocation of conservation in addition to being sites dedicated to the observation of biodiversity. Maintenance and upkeep activities are streamlined to limit pollution (soil, water etc.), limit the consumption of natural resources such as water and preserve healthy conditions in general. This involves the replacement of chemical fertilisers and pesticides with natural and organic products, the development of plant treatments by alternative methods (e.g. plant range diversification), limiting water consumption (by efficient watering, rainwater collection, the recycling of lakes and rivers, etc.). It also involves reducing energy consumption, monitoring soil quality, planting low maintenance vegetation and green waste management (reduction, on-site use, development of mulching and composting).
The “Main Verte” (meaning green fingers/thumbs) programme run by the City of Paris facilitates the establishment of community garden projects for residents on public land. There are more than eighty community gardens located in the capital. Local community associations initiating and managing community gardens on city lands comply with the “Main Verte” programme’s regulations. It stipulates that these gardens be open to the general public on a regular basis, the organisation of events should be open to all, and the sites should be managed in an environmentally sound manner. The "Main Verte" programme promotes environmentally friendly practices and on a local level, works towards the city’s policies for sustainable development.
A mosaic of connected green spaces
The shared green spaces and neighborhood gardens are connected by a double row of lime trees in the Avenue de Flandre. These links between green spaces create a pathway, facilitating wildlife movement and encouraging wild flora in Paris.
Inner Paris features nearly 580 hectares (1.433 acres) of gardens, parks and walks open to the public and managed by the City of Paris or by the State. Though fragmented throughout the most densely urbanised heart of the city, there are over 650 natural areas and green spaces. This fragmentation of habitats which are exploited by wild flora and fauna however is a major cause of decline in biodiversity. In addition to adapted management, the ecological potential of these spaces can be strengthened by reducing their fragmentation. This can be done by linking and promoting connections to the major ecological corridors crossing Paris, thus promoting movement between these inner city spaces and more remote biodiversity reserves. The creation of a map of the green and blue corridors within Paris will ensure the effectiveness and consistency of these projects. This document will guide the creation of new parks and gardens as well as a network of uncultivated urban land not accessible to the public.