What is foodscaping?

foodscaping in geneva switzerland
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Is Foodscaping real?

Yes, foodscaping is a very real hobby and has been around for a long time. It is essentially a relabelling of the term ‘Edible Landscaping’. Foodscaping or Edible Landscaping is the conversion of an outdoor space into one that is used to grow edible plants and food. 

Another great example of when a foodscaping community flourished in Britain in WW2. This is when a campaign known as ‘Dig for Victory’ saw the country produce 75% of its food from empty spaces & back yards.

If you have been searching the term ‘Foodscaping’ it is likely you have come across the community in Geneva Switzerland. This community set a great example of how we could all do some things a little differently . The way we source our food. So, what is foodscpaing and why do they do it in Geneva Switzerland? We will explore the idea in this article.

Need some ideas to get started foodscaping? Check out this article

What do they do in Geneva?

It is a simple idea, everyone grows food and at harvest, the community will trade the vegetables, fruits, and herbs they have grown. In some cases, one person may only grow one type of fruit or vegetable which they will then trade. Not only is homegrown food cheap, but it is also highly nutritious compared to mass-grown food. The example of the foodscaping community in Geneva is something we can all aspire to.

Where exactly is this place?

The foodscaping community is based in a town called Jardins familiaux de Bel Essert which is in Geneva Switzerland. It is becoming an urban legend in the sustainable community and it’s easy to see why, their use of land is not only clever but essential to the survival of future communities.

foodscpaing genf

Urban Homestead & Suburban Farm

As you can see here, from the ground Jardins familiaux de Bel Essert looks just like an average suburban town. It is only from the air we can see the wonderful display of greenhouses, vegetable plots, orchards, and sheds. It is amazing how much food you can produce in your average suburban garden or yard.

Do you want to start foodscaping?

If you want to get stuck into foodscaping head to our homepage here and bookmark it! 

We have a wealth of hands-on articles about foodscaping, just like the community in Geneva Switzerland. Our goal at The Backyard Farmer (the urban homestead blog) is to turn the globe into a foodscaping community and help people eat better as well as help the planet recover.

Why should we start foodscaping?

Growing food has always been good for us as humans. It gets us out into the fresh air and amongst the plants which we know is great for our well-being, it can even stave off depression. 

From a food security & ecological perspective, now is the time we should start foodscaping and growing some of our food.

Industrial farming is damaging the planet and producing less nutritious foods. By growing our food we can take some pressure off the supply chain. In turn, food grown at home is also more nutritious. 

What does ‘foodscape’ mean?

‘Foodscape’ or ‘Foodscaping’ is the process of turning your outdoor yard, space, or garden into somewhere you can grow food. Fruits, salads & vegetables like tomatoes, potatoes, salads, onions, garlic, and carrots can all be grown easily in a small amount of space. There are many different ways you can convert garden space into a food grower’s paradise, inviting fresh food and wildlife into your home.

How do you make an edible landscape?

It’s easier than it sounds, but if you are new to gardening in general then the best thing to do is start small. The best edible plants to grow for absolute beginners are herbs like basil, chives, rosemary, mint, lemon balm, coriander, and parsley. Herbs are usually quite hardy, fast-growing plants and can be used in the kitchen quickly. This will get you into the great experience of growing your food… and eating it!

After adding more and more edible plants to your collection, you will end up with an edible garden!

Why do we have Lawns anyway?


When we look back through history as to why we keep empty green spaces, we find an answer. Which essentially boils down to wealth and demonstrations of power. The ‘Lawn’ as a common house feature has only been around since the 19th century. Before this, it was very much a sign of power and wealth to be able to have a well-kept lawn or garden. Any ‘common folk’ would have had to use any space to grow food or raise cattle for food or income. The garden lawn had its peak during the 16th century when rich landowners would maintain a lawn where they could play sports or host garden parties in geometrically landscaped gardens.

Geneva / Switzerland – Foodscaping

The best and most popular example of modern foodscaping is in Geneva Switzerland where a community grows and exchange food among themselves, this is also still common in parts of the world like Bulgaria and Azerbaijan.

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