Advertisement

Economic Botany

, Volume 64, Issue 3, pp 235–247 | Cite as

Gendered Homegardens: A Study in Three Mountain Areas of the Iberian Peninsula

  • Victoria Reyes-GarcíaEmail author
  • Sara Vila
  • Laura Aceituno-Mata
  • Laura Calvet-Mir
  • Teresa Garnatje
  • Alexandra Jesch
  • Juan José Lastra
  • Montserrat Parada
  • Montserrat Rigat
  • Joan Vallès
  • Manuel Pardo-de-Santayana
Article

Abstract

Gendered Homegardens: A Study in Three Mountain Areas of the Iberian Peninsula. As an example of the importance of gender relations in the use of natural resources, several authors have analyzed the role of women in homegardens. Gendered differences in homegarden management have been difficult to disentangle due to the often–shared nature of gardening. Here, we use an innovative approach to analyze gendered differences in the characteristics and management of homegardens. Specifically, we use information on the prevalence of different household members in gardening activities to classify homegardens as women’s, men’s, or shared. Then, we compare several garden characteristics across the three types of homegardens. For the case study, we use data from homegardens in three rural areas of the Iberian Peninsula. We found that household members generally share homegarden responsibilities in these three regions and that many homegarden characteristics vary with the distribution of gardening tasks. Specifically, we discovered that gardens managed mainly by men were larger, more distant from the dwelling, and better exposed than gardens managed by women. Men and women also used different management techniques; organic fertilizers and traditional pest control management systems predominated in gardens managed by women. Men and women also differed in how they reportedly use garden products, with women favoring household consumption versus sale or gifting. Last, gardens managed mainly by women had a larger diversity of uses for species and a larger diversity of species per unit area. Cultural norms of what is considered appropriate behavior for men and women help explain differences in garden characteristics and their plant composition and structure.

Key Words

Catalan Pyrenees Central Asturias diversity index gendered division of labor kitchen gardens Sierra Norte de Madrid 

Resumen

Huertos y género: Un estudio en tres regiones de montaña de la Península Ibérica. En un intento de entender la importancia de las relaciones de género en el uso de los recursos naturales, varios autores han analizado el papel de las mujeres en los huertos domésticos. Debido a que muchos huertos son gestionados por varios miembros del hogar, es difícil identificar las diferencias de género en el manejo de los huertos. En este artículo utilizamos un enfoque innovador para analizar diferencias de género en las características y manejo de los huertos. Específicamente, utilizamos información sobre el predominio de diferentes miembros del hogar en el cuidado del huerto para clasificar los huertos como de hombres, de mujeres, o compartidos. Luego comparamos las características de estos tres tipos de huertos. El estudio fue realizado en tres zonas rurales de montaña de la Península Ibérica. Hallamos que las responsabilidades del manejo de los huertos son a menudo compartidas y que muchas características de los huertos varían según la distribución de las tareas. Los huertos manejados por hombres principalmente son más grandes, más alejados de la casa, y tienen una mejor exposición que los manejados por mujeres. El género también influye en el predominio de técnicas de manejo; la fertilización orgánica y los métodos tradicionales de control de plagas predominan en los huertos de mujeres. También hallamos diferencias en el destino de los productos del huerto: las mujeres favorecen el consumo en el hogar en vez de la venta o el regalo. Por último, los huertos manejados principalmente por mujeres tienen una mayor diversidad de usos de especies y una mayor diversidad de especies por unidad de área. Las normas culturales que determinan el comportamiento culturalmente correcto para hombres y mujeres ayudan a explicar las diferencias en las características, la composición, y la estructura de los huertos caseros.

Notes

Acknowledgments

Research was funded by the Programa de Ciencias Sociales y Humanidades del Ministerio de Educación y Ciencia (España) (SEJ2007–60873/SOCI). We would like to thank all the tenders who collaborated in the project. We also thank Gerardo Ochoa and Laura Vaqué-Núñez for help collecting the data, Martha Chavez for help in data management, Javier Tardío for bibliographic leads. We also thank the editor and two anonymous reviewers for comments to a previous version of the article. Those comments have greatly improved the manuscript.

Literature Cited

  1. Aceituno-Mata, L. 2006. Estudio etnoecológico de los huertos familiares de la Sierra Norte de Madrid: Dinámicas en la composición, uso, y manejo. Master’s thesis, Universidad Autónoma de Madrid, Madrid.Google Scholar
  2. Acosta-Naranjo, R. and J. Díaz-Diego. 2008. Y en sus manos la vida. Los cultivadores de las variedades locales de Tentudía. Centro de Desarrollo Comarcal de Tentudía, Tentudía, Extremadura.Google Scholar
  3. Agelet, A., M. À. Bonet, and J. Vallès. 2000. Homegardens and Their Role as a Main Source of Medicinal Plants in Mountain Regions of Catalonia (Iberian Peninsula). Economic Botany 54:295–309.Google Scholar
  4. Barry, H. and A. Schlegel. 1982. Cross–Cultural Codes on Contributions by Women to Subsistence. Ethnology 21:165–188.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Bernard, H. R. 2006. Research Methods in Anthropology. Qualitative and Quantitative Approaches. Altamira Press, Walnut Creek, California.Google Scholar
  6. Boster, J. S. 1986. Exchange of Varieties and Information between Aguaruna Manioc Cultivators. American Anthropologist 88:429–436.Google Scholar
  7. Buckingham, S. 2005. Women (Re)construct the Plot: The Regen(d)eration of Urban Food Growing. Area 37:171–179.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Camou-Guerrero, A., V. Reyes-García, M. Martinez-Ramos, and A. Casas. 2008. Knowledge and Use Value of Plant Species in a Raramuri Community: A Gender Perspective for Conservation. Human Ecology 36:259–272.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Carr, E. R. 2008. Men’s Crops and Women’s Crops: The Importance of Gender to the Understanding of Agricultural and Development Outcomes in Ghana’s Central Region. World Development 36:900–915.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Carvalho, A. M. 2010. Homegardens in Northeastern Portugal: Features, Roles and Gendered Knowledge and Practices. In S. Heckler, ed., Gardening and Dwelling. The Aesthetic and Pragmatic Value of Home Gardens. Berghahn, Oxford, United Kingdom (forthcoming).Google Scholar
  11. Chambers, K. J. and J. H. Momsen. 2007. From the Kitchen and the Field: Gender and Maize Diversity in the Bajio Region of Mexico. Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography 28:39–56.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Corlet, J. L., E. A. Dean, and L. E. Grivetti. 2003. Hmong Gardens: Botanical Diversity in an Urban Setting. Economic Botany 57:365–379.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Crouch, D. and C. Ward. 1994. The Allotment: Its Landscape and Culture. Mushroom Bookshop, Nottingham, United Kingdom.Google Scholar
  14. Finerman, R. and R. Sackett. 2003. Using Home Gardens to Decipher Health and Healing in the Andes. Medical Anthropology Quarterly 17:459–482.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  15. Gajaseni, J. and N. Gajaseni. 1999. Ecological Rationalities of the Traditional Homegarden System in the Chao Phraya Basin, Thailand. Agroforestry Systems 46:3–23.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Gispert, M. 1981. Les jardins familiaux au Mexique: leur étude dans une communauté rurale nouvelle située en région tropicale humide. Journal d’Agriculture Traditionnelle et de Botanique Appliquée 33:159–182.Google Scholar
  17. Greenberg, L. 2003. Women in the Garden and Kitchen: The Role of Cuisine in the Conservation of Traditional House Lots among Yucatec Mayan Immigrants. Pages 51–65 in P. L. Howard, ed., Women and Plants: Gender Relations in Biodiversity Management and Conservation. Zed Books, New York and London.Google Scholar
  18. Guzman-Casado, G., J. Soriano-Niebla, S. García-Jimenez, and M. Diaz-del-Canizo. 1999. La recuperación de variedades locales hortícolas en Andalucía (España) como base de la producción agroecológica. Pages 339–362 in E. Sevilla-Guzman, ed., Introduccion a la agroecologia como desarrollo rural sostenible. Ministerio de Educacion y Cultura y Mundiprensa, Madrid.Google Scholar
  19. Howard, P. L. 2003. Women and Plants. Gender Relations in Biodiversity Management and Conservation. Pages 1–48 in P. L. Howard, ed., Women and Plants. Zed Press and Palgrave McMillan, London and New York.Google Scholar
  20. ——— 2006a. Gender and Social Dynamics in Swidden and Homegardens in Latin America. Pages 1–24 in B. M. Kumar and P. K. R. Nair, eds., Tropical Homegardens: A Time–Tested Example of Sustainable Agroforestry. Springer, Heidelberg, Germany.Google Scholar
  21. ——— 2006b. Gender Bias in Ethnobotany: Propositions and Evidence of a Distorted Science and Promises of a Brighter Future. Distinguished Economic Botanist Lecture. Kew Royal Botanical Gardens. http://kent.academia.edu/PatriciaHoward/Papers (18 April 2010).
  22. ——— and G. Nabanoga. 2007. Are There Customary Rights to Plants? An Inquiry among the Baganda (Uganda), with Special Attention to Gender. World Development 35:1542–1563.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Jesch, A. 2009. Ethnobotanical Survey of Homegardens in Patones, Sierra Norte de Madrid, Spain: Management, Use and Conservation of Crop Diversity with a Special Focus on Local Varieties. Master’s thesis, University of Natural Resources and Applied Life Sciences, Vienna.Google Scholar
  24. Kehlenbeck, K. and B. Maass. 2005. Crop Diversity and Classification of Homegardens in Central Sulawesi, Indonesia. Agroforestry Systems 63:53–62.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Kothari, B. 2003. The Invisible Queen in the Plant Kingdom: Gender Perspectives in Medical Ethnobotany. Pages 150–164 in P. L. Howard, ed., Women and Plants: Gender Relations in Biodiversity Management & Conservation. Zed, London.Google Scholar
  26. Kumar, B. M. and P. K. R. Nair. 2004. The Enigma of Tropical Homegardens. Agroforestry Systems 61–2:135–152.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. ———, S. J. George, and S. Chinnamani. 1994. Diversity, Structure and Standing Stock of Wood in the Homegardens of Kerala in Peninsular India. Agroforestry Systems 25:243–262.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Major, J., C. Clement, and A. DiTommaso. 2005. Influence of Market Orientation on Food Plant Diversity of Farms Located on Amazonian Dark Earth in the Region of Manaus, Amazonas, Brazil. Economic Botany 59:77–86.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Mendez, V. E., R. Lok, and E. Somarriba. 2001. Interdisciplinary Analysis of Homegardens in Nicaragua: Micro–Zonation, Plant Use and Socioeconomic Importance. Agroforestry Systems 51:85–96.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Naredo, J. M. 2004. La evolución de la agricultura en España (1940–2000). Editorial Universidad de Granada, Granada, Spain.Google Scholar
  31. Oakley, E. and J. H. Momsen. 2007. Women and Seed Management: A Study of Two Villages in Bangladesh. Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography 28:90–106.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Pieroni, A. 2010. People and Plants in Lëpushë. Traditional Medicine, Local Foods and Postcommunism in a Northern Albanian Village. Pages 16–50 in M. Pardo-de-Santayana, A. Pieroni, and R. K. Puri, eds., Ethnobotany in the New Europe. People, Health and Wild Plant Resources. Berghahn Books, New York and Oxford.Google Scholar
  33. Reyes-García, V., V. Vadez, E. Byron, L. Apaza, W. R. Leonard, E. Perez, and D. Wilkie. 2005. Market Economy and the Loss of Folk Knowledge of Plant Uses: Estimates from the Tsimane’ of the Bolivian Amazon. Current Anthropology 46:651–656.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Rigat, M., M. À. Bonet, S. García, T. Garnatje, and J. Vallès. 2009. Ethnobotanical Studies in the High River Ter Valley (Pyrenees, Catalonia, Iberian Peninsula). Non–Crop Food Vascular Plants and Crop Food Plants with Medicinal Properties. Ecology of Food and Nutrition 48:303–326.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. San Miguel, E. 2005. Etnobotánica de Piloña (Asturias). Cultura y saber popular sobre las plantas en un concejo del Centro–Oriente Asturiano. Ph.D. Thesis, Universidad Autónoma de Madrid, Madrid.Google Scholar
  36. Schneider, J. 2004. Toward an Analysis of Home–Garden Cultures. On Use of Sociocultural Variables in Homegarden Structures. Pages 41–45 in P. Eyzaguirre and O. Linares, eds., Homegardens and Agrobiodiversity. Smithsonian Books, Washington, D.C.Google Scholar
  37. Soemarwoto, O. and G. R. Conway. 2009. The Javanese Homegarden. Journal of Farming System Research 2:95–118.Google Scholar
  38. Soriano-Niebla, J. J. 2004. Conservación y manejo de los recursos genéticos y producción de semillas por los campesinos. Pages 8–28 in J. J. Soriano-Niebla, ed., Hortelanos de la Sierra de Cádiz: Las variedades locales y el conocimiento campesino sobre el manejo de los recursos fitogenéticos. Mancomunidad de Municipios Sierra de Cádiz, Cadiz, Spain.Google Scholar
  39. Voeks, R. A. 2007. Are Women Reservoirs of Traditional Plant Knowledge? Gender, Ethnobotany and Globalization in Northeast Brazil. Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography 28:7–20.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Vogl, C. R. and B. Vogl-Lukasser. 2003. Tradition, Dynamics and Sustainability of Plant Species Composition and Management in Homegardens on Organic and Non–Organic Small–Scale Farms in Alpine Eastern Tyrol, Austria. Biological Agriculture & Horticulture 21:349–366.Google Scholar
  41. Wezel, A. and S. Bender. 2003. Plant Species Diversity of Homegardens of Cuba and its Significance for Household Food Supply. Agroforestry Systems 57:37–47.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. Wildhaber, C. 2010. A Comparative Study of Rural and Urban Allotments in Gravesham, Kent, UK. Pages 330–359 in M. Pardo-de-Santayana, A. Pieroni, and R. K. Puri, eds., Ethnobotany in the New Europe: People, Health and Wild Plant Resources. Berghahn Press, Oxford, United Kingdom.Google Scholar
  43. Zent, S. 2001. Acculturation and Ethnobotanical Knowledge Loss among the Piaroa of Venezuela: Demonstration of a Quantitative Method for the Empirical Study of Traditional Ecological Knowledge Change. Pages 190–211 in L. Maffi, ed., On Biocultural Diversity: Linking Language, Knowledge, and the Environment. Smithsonian Institution Press, Washington, D.C.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The New York Botanical Garden 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Victoria Reyes-García
    • 1
    Email author
  • Sara Vila
    • 2
  • Laura Aceituno-Mata
    • 3
    • 4
  • Laura Calvet-Mir
    • 3
  • Teresa Garnatje
    • 5
  • Alexandra Jesch
    • 6
  • Juan José Lastra
    • 2
  • Montserrat Parada
    • 7
  • Montserrat Rigat
    • 7
  • Joan Vallès
    • 7
  • Manuel Pardo-de-Santayana
    • 4
  1. 1.ICREA and Institut de Ciència i Tecnologia AmbientalsUniversitat Autònoma de BarcelonaCerdanyolaSpain
  2. 2.Departamento de Biología de Organismos y SistemasUniversidad de OviedoOviedoSpain
  3. 3.Institut de Ciència i Tecnologia AmbientalsUniversitat Autònoma de BarcelonaCerdanyolaSpain
  4. 4.Departamento de Biología (Botánica)Universidad Autónoma de MadridMadridSpain
  5. 5.Institut Botànic de Barcelona (CSIC-ICUB)BarcelonaSpain
  6. 6.Institute for Organic FarmingUniversity for Natural Resources and Applied Life SciencesViennaAustria
  7. 7.Laboratori de Botànica, Facultat de FarmàciaUniversitat de BarcelonaBarcelonaSpain

Personalised recommendations