What we believe in
Micro food gardens guided by the principles of agroecology contribute to household and community food security.
Agroecology emphasizes safe production methods, the importance of bahay kubo biodiversity, and control over one’s production resources.
Agroecology recognizes the socio-political realities of the communities affecting food production and consumption. It provides an alternative to the unsustainable industrial food system that’s linked to malnutrition and obesity, climate and waste crises, and poverty and inequality especially among food producers.
Agroecology made sense to the growers who wanted their food gardens to be self-sustaining. Learning agroecological practices was undertaken in a collaborative manner, where the members of the different clusters would come together to share what they have learned, the difficulties they encountered and tried to address these together. Collaboration, saluhan, collective work, the sharing of resources and establishing a kind of “commons” (in some of the resources) also further defined the clusters as a necessary social support system beyond urban gardening and strengthened their bonds as neighbors and friends.
Different gardens took root in the Payatas community–in containers, on rooftops, and in shared spaces.
The urban growers learned agroecological and regenerative practices such as seed saving and composting so that they would no longer need to spend their limited resources on hybrid seeds and fertilizers. Volunteer agriculturists generously took the time to share information on plant health, pest management, and other topics that the growers raised. PLM also created its own agroecology committee to help replicate these agrobiodiverse gardens in different urban poor communities, acknowledging agroecology as a necessary strategy in their struggle for their rights.