Title: Natural urban farming as a mean to connect community to sustainable food: the case of demonstration garden in Tor Mancina

Authors: Sara Spognardi; Claudio Beni; Ilenia Bravo; Enrica Iannucci; Patrizia Papetti

Addresses: Dipartimento di Studi Aziendali, Università degli studi Roma Tre, Via Ostiense, 159, 00154 Rome, Italy ' Consiglio per la Ricerca e la Sperimentazione in Agricoltura, Centro di ricerca per lo studio delle Relazioni tra Pianta e Suolo (CRA-RPS), Via della Navicella, 2, 00184 Rome, Italy ' Laboratorio di Analisi Merceologiche e Territoriali (LAMeT), Dipartimento Economia e Giurisprudenza, Università di Cassino e del Lazio meridionale, Via Sant'Angelo, Località Folcara, 03043 Cassino, Italy ' Laboratorio di Analisi Merceologiche e Territoriali (LAMeT), Dipartimento Economia e Giurisprudenza, Università di Cassino e del Lazio meridionale, Via Sant'Angelo, Località Folcara, 03043 Cassino, Italy ' Laboratorio di Analisi Merceologiche e Territoriali (LAMeT), Dipartimento Economia e Giurisprudenza, Università di Cassino e del Lazio meridionale, Via Sant'Angelo, Località Folcara, 03043 Cassino, Italy

Abstract: Urban agriculture plays an important role to provide an innovative and different connection to food. Visitors, scholars, and generally participants of community gardens activities become 'food citizens', shift from being passive food consumers to becoming co-producers. To achieve this goal, the demonstration garden of Tor Mancina with the involvement of schools and of local communities tests innovative and more sustainable agricultural practices and carries out experiments to test the phytostimulant and pest repellent effects of aromatic and officinalis plants extracts used as basic substances in plant protection management. These experiments aim at inculcating positive values on food, agriculture and environment in growing youth, providing effective solutions to increase crop performance, to enhance the tolerance of plants against stressors, to safeguard the nature, biodiversity and food quality. These activities teach sustainable agriculture practices which form basis for stable livelihood and informed consumption habits. For this reason more initiatives should be in place, nationwide, aimed at encouraging the visit of the community gardens and participation in their activities, in order to learn more about the provenance of food, agricultural processes, nutrition, safety and security, biodiversity and sustainability, and develop new skills.

Keywords: demonstration garden; sustainable production; community garden; urban agriculture.

DOI: 10.1504/IJEPDM.2019.110324

International Journal of Environmental Policy and Decision Making, 2019 Vol.2 No.4, pp.322 - 329

Received: 12 Jun 2019
Accepted: 21 May 2020

Published online: 30 Sep 2020 *

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