|Raised vegetable beds.|
|More raised vegetable beds.|
|Vegetables and herbs growing thickly in the strip behind the garage, and the trees in the main back yard all produce edible fruits. It's a small space but surprisingly productive.|
|More personal orchard flanking a fenceline.|
|About half of what's growing in this yard corner is destined for the dinner table.|
|Yet another personal orchard in early developmental stage.|
|A cultivated side yard.|
|A large raised side yard vegetable bed, fallow in this photo because the house was in the process of being sold. The new owner plans to restore this garden.|
So with that kind of demonstrated concentration in mind, I thought you might find this NPR story interesting and relevant to our own suburban situation:
"The marketing of these new neighborhoods appears to be working — at least at Bucking Horse, where the developer says 200 single-family lots were snatched up within days of going on the market. Values of existing homes have jumped 25 percent since construction began on the agricultural amenities."
It doesn't surprise me. Think about it: If you're a subdivision developer, you could plop yet another live oak into your landscape plan, a live oak of which we already have an infinite boring number (they look nice but they add almost no incremental value). Or you could set aside an area where the POA could put some lemons, grapefruit, figs, and other local favorites. Which do you reckon residents would value more highly? Even if residents are not into gardening themselves, they tend to respond positively to initiatives that are just plain interesting and different.
|I had to pull the Meyer lemons off our tree last night before the worst of the cold front hit. I'm not sure what I'll do with them yet, but this article titled "100 things to do with a Meyer lemon" might give me some ideas.|
And in case you think that it would be too costly for a homeowner's association to maintain agricultural amenities, here's some news for you. We have ten kids just on our one cul-de-sac who would jump for joy at the chance to participate in something like a common area garden. They are outside playing every day, constantly looking for new things to do.
|Because when you think of it, there's only so much a roving band of children can accomplish in the limited concrete environment of a cul-de-sac like this.|
The NPR article talks about new subdivisions being designed around these amenities, but the potential also exists for retrofit within existing subdivisions.