A community garden project, Himmelbeet, recently opened in the middle of Wedding, just down the road from Leopoldplatz at Schulstraße/corner Ruheplatzstraße. As this space was not initially intended to be Himmelbeet’s home, the organizers had to adapt – and now they’re discovering the great advantages…
“Something typical at this corner are the manyp people who just find us by chance and are really surprised”, says Hannah Lisa Linsmaier. So at the new place, Himmelbeet all of a sudden attracts passers-by. Not surprising, as the spot just across from Leopoldplatz is located in the core of Wedding.
“We’re really grateful to the people from the Schulamt (school’s office) that they gave this spot to us so quickly”, says the organizer. Originally, the ambitious Urban Gardening project was meant to happen on top of the empty parking house at Schillerpark-Center – with the supermarket chain sponsoring the project. But so far there’s no construction permit for this unusual spot, and the problem of ire protection is not solved yet either. That’s why the empty roof of the shopping center car park will stay gray for another while.
The perfect spot
There’s one winner in this dilemma though: Leopoldplatz, which is located much more centrally anyways. 300 garden beds have turned the former ice skating area (which had been used as an oval for years) into a green paradise. About half of the beds are for rent, and they’re so wanted that now there’s a waiting list for them. Weddingers can grow their plants and veggies here and hopefully have a rich harvest at the end of the summer. All of this is happening with professional guidance and under the watchful eyes of curious neighbours.
During the entire summer, Himmelbeet will be open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. In a cute little garden shed you can buy drinks and cakes as gardening makes you hungry and thirsty. And you’re invited to stay: wooden pallets were turned into chairs, benches and some sort of stage.
The project is rounded (and partly financed) by the sale of plants. Twenty to thirty volunteers help to get Himmelbeet through the summer. The idea of gardening in the middle of the Kiez is so contagious that the project is meeting its boundaries already. “Maybe we can turn the space at the former senior citizen’s meeting point at Schulstraße into a garden as well”, hopes Hannah Lisa. Who knows – maybe the idea of gardening on the roof will be turned in a more widespread project reaching many spots in Wedding?
Translation: Daniela Hombach
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