FROM SMALL GARDENS TO MASS PRODUCTION

Vegetables were grown very early in fenced areas or gardens which were irrigated, in particular in the Mediterranean region. Products from the gardens played a significant role in terms of human food during the Middle Age, and were used in particular for preparing soups and pots.

Market-gardening developed in the former marshes that existed around the cities, and in which water was still plentiful, as in Mexico for instance.

In France, in the century of Louis XIVth, La Quintinie introduced new techniques into the king’s kitchen garden which allowed for a better use of the solar radiation by using glass bells, glazed frames, and greenhouses then called ‘incubators’.

Nowadays greenhouses and plastic tunnels allow for the production of vegetables to no longer depend on the season.

At the same time, mass consumption claims for mass production. Growing increasingly occurs on a very large scale and most operations have been mechanized.

Family and workers gardens, however, still exist along with artisan horticulture.