chapter  7
26 Pages

Gender and Gardening

This chapter empirically examines if the garden is a classed and gendered space.

I argue that the construction of gender rests on its proximity to positions of class.

Working-class women, for example, have historically been denied the right to be

‘ladies’, because of their distance from middle-classness (Skeggs 1997). In this

chapter, I interrogate what gendered proximities to class bring to gardening practices:

I ask, what differences inhered in the kinds of masculine and feminine gardening

working-and middle-class people did in 1990s British culture. Comprised of three

sections, the first part of the chapter explores the historical antecedents of gendered

gardening; the second turns to garden practices and asks if men and women do

different types of gardening; and the third using case studies of floristry and flower

arranging, asks if there was a specifically gendered collection of aesthetic practices

among the people of the study.