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Beyond food production: Ecosystem services provided by home gardens. A case study in Vall Fosca, Catalan Pyrenees, Northeastern Spain


  • Calvet-Mir, Laura
  • Gómez-Baggethun, Erik
  • Reyes-García, Victoria


Interest in ecosystem services provided by agroecosystems has grown over the last decades with research focusing on the type of environmental, economic and social benefits delivered by agroecosystems. Researchers suggest that, besides the provisioning of food, fuel, and fiber, agroecosystems provide habitat, cultural, and regulating services. One type of agroecosystem that remains relatively unexplored from an ecosystem service perspective is home gardens. In this paper, we aim at advancing the understanding of the value of home gardens by conducting an assessment of home gardens ecosystem services. For the empirical analysis we use home gardens in Vall Fosca (Catalan Pyrenees). We identify and characterize the most important ecosystem services provided by home gardens, and conduct a valuation of the social importance of home garden ecosystem services. The methodological approach for this work included an in-depth literature review, participant observation, semi-structured interviews, a valuation questionnaire, and a scientific panel consultation. We identified and characterized 19 ecosystem functions and related services. According to our informants, home gardens provide a large set of ecosystem services, being cultural services the category most valued. We found that the most important ecosystem services provided by home gardens differ from those provided by other types of agroecosystems.

Suggested Citation

  • Calvet-Mir, Laura & Gómez-Baggethun, Erik & Reyes-García, Victoria, 2012. "Beyond food production: Ecosystem services provided by home gardens. A case study in Vall Fosca, Catalan Pyrenees, Northeastern Spain," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 74(C), pages 153-160.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:ecolec:v:74:y:2012:i:c:p:153-160
    DOI: 10.1016/j.ecolecon.2011.12.011

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Knoche, Scott & Lupi, Frank, 2007. "Valuing deer hunting ecosystem services from farm landscapes," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 64(2), pages 313-320, December.
    2. de Groot, Rudolf S. & Wilson, Matthew A. & Boumans, Roelof M. J., 2002. "A typology for the classification, description and valuation of ecosystem functions, goods and services," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 41(3), pages 393-408, June.
    3. Swinton, Scott M. & Lupi, Frank & Robertson, G. Philip & Hamilton, Stephen K., 2007. "Ecosystem services and agriculture: Cultivating agricultural ecosystems for diverse benefits," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 64(2), pages 245-252, December.
    4. Zhang, Wei & Ricketts, Taylor H. & Kremen, Claire & Carney, Karen & Swinton, Scott M., 2007. "Ecosystem services and dis-services to agriculture," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 64(2), pages 253-260, December.
    5. Rodriguez, Luis C. & Pascual, Unai & Niemeyer, Hermann M., 2006. "Local identification and valuation of ecosystem goods and services from Opuntia scrublands of Ayacucho, Peru," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 57(1), pages 30-44, April.
    6. Pascual, Unai & Muradian, Roldan & Rodríguez, Luis C. & Duraiappah, Anantha, 2010. "Exploring the links between equity and efficiency in payments for environmental services: A conceptual approach," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 69(6), pages 1237-1244, April.
    7. Bjorklund, Johanna & Limburg, Karin E. & Rydberg, Torbjorn, 1999. "Impact of production intensity on the ability of the agricultural landscape to generate ecosystem services: an example from Sweden," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 29(2), pages 269-291, May.
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    Cited by:

    1. Nurcan Helicke, 2015. "Seed exchange networks and food system resilience in the United States," Journal of Environmental Studies and Sciences, Springer;Association of Environmental Studies and Sciences, vol. 5(4), pages 636-649, December.
    2. Scholte, Samantha S.K. & van Teeffelen, Astrid J.A. & Verburg, Peter H., 2015. "Integrating socio-cultural perspectives into ecosystem service valuation: A review of concepts and methods," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 114(C), pages 67-78.
    3. Pröpper, Michael & Haupts, Felix, 2014. "The culturality of ecosystem services. Emphasizing process and transformation," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 108(C), pages 28-35.


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