Abstract

A nationwide survey of community gardeners found differences in rankings of the importance of community gardens related to quality-of-life perceptions based on Maslow' hierarchy of human needs model. Race, gender, and city sizes affected perceptions. When comparisons were made among the four racial/ethnic divisions, responses to 18 of the 24 questions were found to be statistically different. Community gardens were especially important to African-American and Hispanic gardeners. Male and female gardeners rated quality-of-life benefits from gardens similarly in importance. However, women placed higher value on the importance of saving money and the beauty within the garden. Gardeners in small, medium, and large metropolitan cities had similar quality-of-life perceptions with only 4 of the 24 statement responses showing significant differences. Significant differences were found in 10 of the 24 statement responses between gardeners of the two large cities of Los Angeles and New York. In most cases, mean ratings were higher for gardeners in New York than those in Los Angeles.

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Author notes

2Graduate research assistant. Department of Horticultural Sciences, Texas A&M University, College Station, TX, 77843-2133.

3Professor, Department of Horticulture, Forestry and Recreation Resources, Kansas State University, Manhattan, KS, 66506-5506.

4Associate Professor, Department of Horticultural Sciences, Texas A&M University, College Station, TX, 77843-2133.