birds. I also noticed that easement gardens seemed to pop up in pairs or be clustered on certain blocks."
In 2009, Hunter and her field team collected formal data on 22,562 properties. Eleven percent had "e-gardens," and as she suspected, they're often clustered. But it also became apparent that most weren't planted to replace trees lost to the ash borer, since "two-thirds of all e-gardens held at least one street tree."
This summer, Hunter mailed surveys to residents with and without e-gardens. She hopes the results will "shed some light on why the easement gardens have a contagious spatial distribution. For example, are people learning from one another or imitating one another? Is garden style based on normative views of place--that is, people's ideas about what a front lawn and a neighborhood should look like?"