Proposal:Facade garden

From OpenStreetMap Wiki
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Facade garden
Proposal status: Draft (under way)
Proposed by: Joost schouppe
Tagging: garden:type=facade_garden
Applies to: node
Definition: tiny garden in the public domain, generally directly bordering a private house facade, operated by the resident of that house. Usually in an urban context, replacing just a few paving stones in the sidewalk with some greenery.

Draft started: 2021-02-15
RFC start: 2021-04-07


leisure=garden + garden:type=facade_garden is used to identify miniature gardens in urban areas. How to recognize them:
- perched against a private facade. The focus isn't on the facade itself; often it contains just flowers and shrubs
- replaces existing pavement, usually a hole in the sidewalk
- very small, usually just a meter or so along the facade, and about 30 cm deep
- not operated by the government, but rather a private initiative (this is usally recognizable by the very "personal style" of the little garden) - permitted or even encouraged by the governement. Usually you need a permit to open the space, or there is a list where you can create the space without a special permit. This is NOT about "guerrilla gardening" of underused bare ground, but about creation of a new space where a sidewalk used to be.

In Dutch they are known as "geveltuin" (facade garden) or "tegeltuin" (paving stone garden"), there's a Dutch language wikipedia article about them.

Since they are very small, it's probably only useful as a node. When micromapping, it could conceivable be used on ways or areas.

While they can have vines climbing the facade, it's not the same as garden:type=green_wall (which covers entire walls by design).

Some sub-tags are introduced in the tagging section.


While tiny, local governments encourage the creation of these gardens for their perceived positive effect on neighborhood livability, air quality and heat island effect. It is unclear if this concept is known in other countries than Belgium and Holland, so it is unknown if facade_garden is the best possible description.

An alternative could be leisure=facade_garden. That would avoid data consumers would have to treat these facade gardens very differently based on a specific value of the subtag, as all other gardens are of a much more significant. Since this is a very local phenomenon, there will almost unvoidably be places where the map is cluttered with facade gardens. However, this can already happen with the current use of gardens, including green walls.


Usefull combinations
Key value description
description=* free text If needed, a description of some aspects of the garden
direction=* 180 Orientation of the garden. In this case, the garden faces directly South. (0=North, 90=East, etc.)
direct_sunlight=* no/partial/yes Depends on orientation and nearby features. Plants when sold usually come with some info about their need of sun (full sunshine, semi shadowed, shadow). The type of plants that are thriving can help in the choice of the value. Note: this can be hard to tell, just skip if you're uncomfortable with it.
plant=* vine;flower;shrub;groundcover What types of plants are planted? Can be several.
rain_barrel yes Whether there is an on-site rain barrel. Assumed to be no.
start_date=* 2020 Year, month or exact date the garden was set up.
image=* (location of the file) Image depicting the garden. Note that this usually requires taking a picture of the facade, which can cause privacy concerns in some countries.
edible=* yes/no Whether some of the plants are edible (see Proposed features/Plant descriptors)


facade garden in Utrecht
facade garden with flowering plants


Features/Pages affected

garden:type=facade_garden : adding value description Two new tags would be introduced: direct_sunlight rain_barrel

External discussions


Please comment on the discussion page.