Gardening in Basel
Many of us are lucky enough to live in an apartment building or house that has a garden or some shared green space. With the coming of spring, gardening season also begins, and it is important to know what obligations come with the privilege of having access to a garden space.
If you live in an apartment building and have a garden that is shared by all tenants, the regular garden work (mowing the lawn, weeding, trimming small bushes) is normally done by a hired gardener, and the costs are equally distributed among all tenants and paid for through your Nebenkosten (side costs). If, however, only one tenant can use the garden, then they alone must bear the cost or the responsibility for the gardening. What does that entail? If you live in a free-standing house, row house, or are the single user of a garden space, you are responsible for the garden maintenance, which includes work that does not require any special knowledge or training (lawn mowing, weeding, small bush trimming). For work that requires expertise, such as landscaping, cutting of trees, or cutting large branches from trees, it is the responsibility of the landlord to organize and assume the cost. Disagreements with landlords that cannot be settled directly can be taken up by the Mieterverband (tenant association), an organization for tenants’ rights (www.mieterverband.ch/mv-bs.html).
Gardening Program for Children
If you don’t have access to a garden but would like to introduce your children (ages 4-11) to the joys of gardening, sign them up for the “Gartenkind” gardening program for children. There are about 60 garden locations throughout Switzerland, where children can manage their own garden bed under the guidance of a course instructor. From spring to the fall school holidays, kids will learn about vegetables, soil, garden animals, and the cycles of nature, and they can harvest their vegetables, potatoes, berries, and herbs or learn to bind a colorful flower bouquet. If your children enjoy being outside and want to know more about gardening, you can sign them up for a garden course in your area now! Simply go to https://www.bioterra.ch/angebote-engagement/gartenkind/gartenkind-saisonkurse, find a location near you (there are several in Basel-Stadt and Baselland), and click on the contact person to register; for this course; only a registration and regular visits are necessary. If you enjoy gardening and being outdoors with children, they are also looking for adult leaders. Interested? Go to their website and check out the introductory courses available in your area.
Drop-in Gardens for Kids
There are also some open gardens in Bern and Basel where no registration is necessary. The garden in Basel is the “Gärtli im Park,” located between the car park and the pond at the Park im Grünen in Münchenstein. There are caregivers on site on specific days that always have exciting new activities for the visitors, rain or shine. For this program, there is no cost and no registration necessary, simply stop by on the operating days between 13:30-16:00; check the website for this season’s dates (https://www.bioterra.ch/angebote-engagement/gartenkind/regionalgaerten-offene-nachmittage/gaertli-im-park).Share