Why Butterfly Gardens?

  • Because otherwise there would be no fresh vegetables on these tables
  • Because they believe that they can change human destinies
  • Because this is a 3-in-1 program that unites protecting the environment, supporting healthy living and creating new jobs

What are Butterfly Gardens?

Butterfly Gardens are created and operated by the Butterfly Developments Association. This ecological settlement community agricultural model was especially created for underprivileged and other small settlements. In 2010 the program won the Hungarian award of the Social Business idea competition, a program founded by Mohammed Yunus, a Nobel Prize-winning economics professor, who is associated with the creation of the term social business.

Butterfly Gardens are currently operating in two settlements, while vegetable growing is still ongoing at Nagydobos, Szalaszend, Ároktő, Edelény, Hejőkeresztúr and Sajókeresztúr.  Hejőszalonta, Hejőkeresztúr, Bükkaranyos, Ároktő, Edelény, Pánd, Szirmabesenyő, Sajóvámos, Sajósenye, Sajóecseg, Sajóbábony and Szalaszend have also gained experience in gardening.

How does a chemical-free community garden operate?

Butterfly Developments Association researches and educates in several areas of sustainable living. In the course of the past years they have dedicated the most energy to chemical-free gardening. They have taught the basics of community gardening to people living in deep poverty. They have demonstrated how to sow seeds and raise seedlings, and how to rotate crops. Mulching and chemical-free pest protection have also been introduced to the participants, and they have made a compost container, learned what can be recycled in it and how to use the ready-made compost. These new gardeners were able to farm their own basic vegetables by the end of each season.

How can you make your kitchen greener?

Sustainability is a way of living: if you choose this path you will be thinking about staying healthy and protecting our planet in every area of your life. Gardening automatically brings up the next question – how can the produced vegetables be used? Healthy, delicious and last but not least chemical-free produce is the base for the most delicious dishes. Butterfly Gardens also convey this knowledge to the gardeners and any other interested parties, connecting gardening with cooking, preparing dishes and learning about preservation technologies. Group activities such as cooking on an open fire help to build a community among the participants too.

How can you make your whole home greener?

Having already talked about cooking and the kitchen and preserving the surplus produce, it isn’t possible to continue without talking about economical and sustainable households. The participants in the gardening program can learn about composting, recycling and basic sewing techniques that allow reusing textiles. Trainings also involve talking about natural tools and cleaning products that can be used in the household.

Would you like to hear more about Butterfly Developments?

Learn more about them!

Gardening is usually taught at a community garden during a whole agricultural season, but from time to time it’s possible to take courses composed of a few training sessions. Cooking and household management are covered at trainings. Butterfly Developments Association has also published some of the material gathered during their years of operation. Most of these publications are available via their website, along with other useful information (for example, recipes, knowledge libraries). They also regularly publish recipes and gardening tips on their Facebook page.