What land is covered by verge policies
Once we start thinking about verge gardens, we start seeing land everywhere that should be given some love. But...
To most of us, all the public land around streets and roads is part of a bundle. We don't have any reason to think about the different bits. This can lead to people planting what they think is a verge garden but find out the hard way that they've planted in the wrong place.
Check your council policy but the standard verge is the space between your front property line and the kerb. Nothing more.
It doesn't include median strips, laneways or other public land. If in doubt, check with your council. It also doesn't include privately owned land or other government-owned land, even if it doesn't look like anyone uses it.
That direct link between the verge and the resident is the reason that Councils have been able to provide verge garden policies that don't require you to go through things like planning applications or community garden proposals. If there is an issue, they can look at the verge, look up, and know whose door to knock on.
You can usually adopt a verge but only IF the property owner agrees and you must be clear about who will maintain it.
One verge at a time
Once we start thinking about verge gardens, we start seeing land everywhere that should be given some love.
But every garden created needs someone to look after it - long term. It's better to concentrate on inspiring your neighbours and making sure you don't get into a dispute.
We need lots of everyday people converting their own verges and through that having lots of conversations that build trust relationships and networks. It's groups and networks, not individual heroes, that change the world.
If you want to do more, and I hope you do, use your verge to develop your ideas and then participate in a group or community project.
This free article is part of the Understanding the Space section: bite-sized introductions to gardening in these small but wonderfully complex spaces.