Guerrilla Gardening: A Manualfesto

Maya Khankhoje in Rabble Book Reviews:

Screenhunter_10_sep_18_1724Guerrilla gardening can be summarily defined as gardening in public urban spaces with or without permission. Gardening by the citizens, that is, by urban guerrillas intent, not on destroying the status quo as such but on restoring the web of life that the status quo has been destroying so wantonly. Why do these citizens feel such a sense of urgency? Consider the following:

The earth is cultivated more than ever before…swamps are drying up and cities are springing up at an unprecedented scale. We have become a burden to our planet. Resources are becoming scarce and soon nature will no longer be able to satisfy our needs.

This pressing concern was voiced by Quintus Septimus Tertullian more than 2,200 years ago. This is the very same concern that has spurred urban guerrillas of a gentler, albeit no less radical bend of mind than armed guerrillas, to engage in urban gardening tactics, risking fines and imprisonment. These include fly-by-night plantings in urban wastelands, lobbing “seed grenades” into fenced-off empty lots, planting trees in the middle of nowhere, covering traffic circles with native ground cover, sowing edible plants in school-yards, draping lamp posts with decorative creepers, developing community gardens and empowering disaffected youth by reintroducing them to the joys of dirtying one’s hands in the soil. The list is as boundless as any warrior’s imagination.

More here.