Community Food Growing in Dundee
Dundee has a long history of allotmenteering, and has seen a proliferation of community growing projects in recent years; this has coincided with a resurgence in public interest in growing food locally, for various reasons.
Growing your own has multiple benefits, helping to improve mental and physical health through exercise and healthy eating; reducing social isolation by connecting communities; closing the attainment gap by offering alternative education resources; improving biodiversity in the urban setting and reducing food miles to help shrink the city’s carbon footprint. Food production, storage and transport has a huge contribution to global greenhouse emissions; switching to locally-grown, seasonal produce can have a significant impact.
Change in our food systems is a vital tool to improve life in many ways and Dundee City Council is committed to helping to make that change through existing allotments and community growing opportunities across the city. Our commitments and vision are detailed in our Food Growing Strategy for the city.
Food-growing spaces provided by Dundee City Council comprise allotments and community gardens.
Allotments: Allotments are plots of land that are rented by individuals for their own use to cultivate fruit and vegetables. DCC run four allotment sites at MacAulay St, Ancrum Road, Magdalen Green and Arklay Terrace South. If you wish to join the waiting list for a council plot, please email firstname.lastname@example.org listing your name, address, email and telephone number as well as the site location(s) you are interested in.
There are many more allotment sites in the city that are leased by allotment associations such as West Law, South Road and City Road. These associations have their own waiting lists and must be contacted directly if you would like to rent an allotment on these sites. We recommend visiting the allotment site on a Saturday morning to have the best chance of finding an allotmenteer who can help.
Community gardens: these are run by community groups or organisations and usually have their own committee. They may have growing space that you can use, or may prefer that people muck in and help out with communal growing. For more information on existing community gardens, or setting up your own, please contact email@example.com, telephone 01382 432736.
Resources and further information: Food growing is supported in Scottish law by the Community Empowerment Act 2015 which requires local authorities to produce a Food Growing Strategy for the city.
National support for allotment growing comes from the Scottish Allotment Gardens Society. Support for community growing is from Social Farms and Gardens.
We recommend that food growing projects avoid the use of peat altogether. Most compost sold in the UK contains large amounts of peat unless specifically labelled as ‘peat-free’. Discovery compost is a locally-produced, peat-free, recycled alternative available from the Riverside recycling centre on Wright Avenue.