Allotment Sheds

The British concept of allotments might be foreign to most Americans. These small garden plots are temporary, but that doesn’t stop many gardeners from building their own creative allotment sheds—many of which could become a tiny house, as it happened to this man a few years ago.

An allotment garden, or just allotment, is a small plot in a community garden given to a group or individual for growing food plants. The gardens are granted for a short amount of time and are rotated through different paid memberships. The term victory garden, coined in World War I and II, can also be used for these small (usually between 500-5,000 square feet) plots of land. Allotments are utilized in many countries including Denmark and Sweden, the Czech Republic, Russia and Greece.

While allotments and their sheds are not for residential purposes, many sheds built to house tools and other garden implements become temporary homes for gardeners as they work on their land. These sheds will sometimes have small wood stoves to keep gardeners warm in some of the rainy, cold weather that plagues Northern Europe. Other sheds have seating and tables, cots for napping and small camping stoves or a storm kettle to stir up some fresh garden fare. What is also fun and unusual is how creative some people can get with their sheds by using recycled materials or whatever is lying around the allotment.


The lovely Katie Lane gardens, cooks and eats at her allotment with a storm kettle and a small gas stove and oven. She writes about her adventures on Plot 15c on her blog, Lavender and Leeks. She even gives us a peak into her “girly” shed on YouTube.



This allotment shed is made from recycled pallets. This website gives you tips on how to build an allotment shed.


Skansens koloniträdgård





Photos by Wikimedia, The Telegraph, Mary Ellen Garden, Democracy Street, Rule Brittania


By Christina Nellemann for the [Tiny House Blog]

19 thoughts on “Allotment Sheds”

  1. Many allotments in Denmark have slightly larger sheds, that many people live in during the summer. Many of those sheds are very similar to tiny houses.

  2. Sorry, but these look like shacks. Is this what we’re destined to live in once the 1% takes everything. Small homes are great, but I would go nuts in such a little space.

    • they aren’t for living in. they are tool sheds that are also used for cooking/relaxing in while working on a garden which may be some distance from your home.

  3. Stellar idea Love the work sheds!!!

    Gerrie, If you had a garden, hopefully you would be too busy to spent much time in the tool shed and could go home to your abode
    when the days work is done in your garden.

  4. Some of my all-time favorite TV shows incorporate allotments and their sheds in the storylines: Last of the Summer Wine, Good Neighbors, and one episode of Rosemary and Thyme. I had never heard of these until watching these British shows. I have often thought that it’s too bad they can’t be used for permanent dwellings

    • You’re not supposed to live in an allotment shed, that’s very true, but I know of at least one instance. I used to have an allotment on a large site up in East Finchley, in North London, and an old guy who rented two plots side by side gave up living with his married daughter and just moved in to his shed. The management connived at the arrangement, and the old guy even got his pension books delivered to the shed, care of the management office. It was a pretty good shed too, warm and weatherproof, and I’m sure he was comfortable. Made me rather envious!

  5. I love these photos and think the allotment movement makes city living bearable. I’m in Vienna at the moment and here allotments ‘Kleingarten’ originally rented out for growing food from almost 100 years ago have recently been built on with tiny houses.
    I think people live in them in the summer months and then only at weekends later on. If anyone knows more about them I would love to find out! You can see my photos here.

  6. yes, gardening and sheds go together like the horse and carriage! An outdoor storage shed is a good thing to have to keep your tools. I’ve seen many people transforming sheds like the ones in your pictures into nice summer houses. I like the recycled pallets one 🙂 very original!


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