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Abandoned Garden Shed

abandoned garden shed

To my surprise, and if I remember right, a reader of my blog told me once that garden areas are not common in his country. So, when I talk about garden areas in Germany, they are very common here and I don’t talk about gardens in front of any houses. What I am talking about are large areas where you find several hundred plots that citizens can rent. The thing is, some people live in apartment complex, others live in an apartment tower, which means they don’t have a garden in front of their home. And that is where the point of these large garden areas comes from, because anyone can rent a garden plot.

They are basically recreational areas for citizens that want to get out of their apartment. And it doesn’t even cost a lot of money, it’s incredibly cheap and does only cost a yearly payment that anyone can afford. Most districts have at least one or two garden areas. Here in our city you find them everywhere, but it’s not much different in other cities. But even if it’s cheap to rent one of these plots, there are certain requirements that can vary depending on where you rent the plot. But usually they really just want that you grow things, that you take care and that you are a good community member.

Most people are realists and know a garden is work. There are basically three groups of people. The first group knows that a garden means work, and they accept that and the result of their work is a beautiful garden. The second group knows too that a garden means work, which is why they don’t want to rent one. And then you have the third group, they want to rent a garden because they have seen that gardens are beautiful, but soon they realize that a garden doesn’t become beautiful on its own. The third group is the reason why you find abandoned and overgrown garden plots in these areas too. Yes, some people don’t expect that it would be work.

These given up plots might not be beautiful for some, but as a photographer and someone who appreciates abandoned things, I see it differently. I mean you can find abandoned architecture beautiful or interesting as a photographer, but it doesn’t mean that you want to live in an abandoned structure. Same counts here with the abandoned garden plots, they look interesting because nature doesn’t need a lot of time to claim every square centimeter back. That’s what I find interesting about it.

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11 Comments »

  1. It’s an interesting photo and you are right nature doesn’t take long to claim back what man has abandoned. What happens to plots like this that have been abandoned? Do they belong to the city or private owners. If the people who rent them don’t take care of them can they be taken back? I imagine there is waiting list to get a plot. Of course here in Australia if you live in the country or the suburbs you have a garden but people who live in apartment blocks in big cities like Sydney and Melbourne don’t. There might be landscaped gardens around the complex if they are lucky but not their own bit of garden and I’ve never heard of this scheme in an Australian city. Some councils or organisationsdo have community gardens where people can share the work of growing vegetables. I guess land developers might make land available for private gardens if they thought there was money in it so if we had them I bet they would not be cheap. Silly I know. Australia is huge but developers want every metre of city space to be making money.

    • The plot in the photo must have been abandoned more recently, because it’s just the grass that grew tall. There are worse cases where you can barely still see the shed, because trees and plants grew over and through it 🙂 But that are also the ones that are hard to photograph… today I’ve seen some where I wondered if a wide-angle lens would do a better job.

      There are some plots that have been abandoned for so long that it would be a huge amount of work to make them beautiful again. People usually try to get a plot where the previous renter did a good job to maintain the garden, some give up due to illness, or because they get too old. But if the garden plot contains some special things like solar panels, or any other good things, you might need to pay extra… or the previous owner won’t give the plot up, or he will take the things of value out. There are plots that are more recently abandoned where people take the work and convert it into a beautiful garden. In the case of completely overgrown and horrible plots, you might get several years for free if you take them, because the management is interested to have them in good condition again. So, some people might think it’s worth it to take one in a desolate condition. About your last question, I think it’s mostly people giving up, but if you don’t follow rules, the management might make you leave the plot.

      Talking about the management, those areas are basically managed by garden boards… which means, the areas are controlled and managed by clubs. Since there are so many different garden areas, and all of them have their own club… I can’t speak for every garden area. Also I never really did a lot of research… but I’ve heard it’s often the city that did hand over these areas in the past… I’ve also heard of big farmers leasing large areas. I don’t know, I am no specialist. All I know is that this is not a short-term matter.. all garden areas in our city excist since I can think… my mother said they excisted already when she was still a child. So, as a whole, they don’t go away in a short period. But it’s an interesting question, that makes another question pop up… all those hundred small soccer clubs, who owns the assets, the field? I don’t know how that all works with clubs. Neither with garden clubs or soccer clubs.

      The German Wiki has a long page that I didn’t read yet, but it’s not just about recreational areas, these areas do also have ecologically reasons. I think the government wants these areas, and it’s part of the culture. In fact there is a nationwide club register… every garden club is part of it. There are probably also tons of laws for the clubs or whoever is leasing it. I never really looked into it, how and why it works.. it’s probably an as complex subject as any other German things 🙂

      I don’t think there is a waiting list. There are so many free and abandoned plots, you probably could get one tomorrow. It depends.. you can be put on a waiting list if you want a special plot, at a certain place. But generally, you can get a garden in no time, even those in very good conditions. I think there are more garden plots than there is demand.

      The garden you talk about, like botanik garden or parks and so on… we have them too. The garde areas, I think these are community gardens… it’s just that they are very common here. The person who told me it was not common in his country was actually from the USA… now I hear you and it’s not common in Australia either. To be honest, I never expected that… I actually learned that through my blog. 🙂

      • Well we do have lots of national parks, recreational areas and botanical gardesn. The community gardens I mentioned are usually set up by an organisation or possibly local governement specifically for people to learn to grow vegetables especially in low income areas. You don’t have your own plot the group works together and there is usually some kind of coordinator. We have one in Geeveston which I don’t know a lot about but I should visit some time and ask someone.

        • Then our and your community gardens serve the same purpose, it’s just that in our case the citizens do get access to their own plot. We have many national parks, some are big, but most are very small. But I guess all of them are much smaller than yours. I guess you could get lost in some Australian national parks, that’s at least what I saw in the TV.

        • That makes a lot of sense. I would probably not survive a day without asking an Australian hiker how to survive and navigate several days through the outback. 🙂 But since I do already have issues with the German temperatures, the heat in Australia mainland (I know you told me it’s not that hot where you are) would kill me alone.

          I never used these devices since I usually just do daily hikes like a half or whole day, but I did at least hear of them. In the past I watched YouTube videos of both, Australia or America where you could hike for many days without finding a street. They often mentioned these devices. I find these extreme hikes interesting.

        • In the Tasmanian wilderness you would be just as likely to suffer from exposure to low temperatures and there is a big chunk of the state that is World Heritage listed and there are no roads, no towns and no people.

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