Guerrilla Gardening

This one is not only a bit wild, it's a little bit naughty. But it's fun to shake things up every now and again, isn't it? You see guerrilla gardening, by definition, is using land that's not your own, without permission, for growing plants. Normally I advocate foraging responsibly, which means not over stripping populations, and doing so only where it is legal. However, I find that doing a little guerrilla gardening is a good way to decrease my dependence on food megacorporations. It makes me just a bit more self-reliant, and is a sustainable practice.

There are a lot of guerrilla gardeners out there who are very political, and are using the practice to beautify and improve derelict lands, particularly in big cities. If this interests you, do a search for your area. You'll be amazed and inspired by their projects. There are some good forums and websites out there devoted to the subject.

I operate on a small scale, and try to be as non-invasive as possible. I haven't taken over any large plots of land. Instead, I tuck a few bulbs into the ground next to a fence post, drop a few seeds next to the ditch, or stick some herbs behind a nice tree. I do my guerrilla gardening just off the bike paths and in the fields surrounding my neighborhood. I plant seeds, carefully record the spot, and then let Mamma N do the rest. I don't have any guarantee these plants will grow, but with so many mini gardens started, I think the odds are pretty good that there will be something to harvest next year.

So what am I planting on my guerrilla gardening trips? Being autumn, I've put a lot of hard neck garlic cloves into the ground. I have high hopes that these will do well.

Despite my best efforts to find sunchokes growing wild in my area, I was unsuccessful. And now that all the plants have frozen brown, I don't have much hope of identifying wild sunchokes to forage. So I've started several populations of the cultivated variety through guerrilla gardening.

I've been using foraged motherwort for medicinal purposes, but the only patch I've found growing wild is 25 miles away from my home. I collected seed from that patch, and have guerrilla gardened seeds closer to home.

Come spring, who knows? I've got the winter to plot the course of future guerrilla gardening projects. The wild soil is rich and dark and much healthier looking than what I have at home. I might have to take advantage of that in the spring time, and plant some foods that won't grow in the depleted soil of my backyard.

Sounds like a riot, doesn't it? Even my mom, who has been quite ill over the last few years and doesn't get outside much, wanted to get in on the action. On one of my guerrilla gardening missions, she crushed heads of garlic for me, and sat on a big log and acted as my lookout. If a person was coming down the trail, she alerted me with the phrase, this is really fun.


I'm sharing this adventure with Fight Back Friday. Follow the link and enjoy.


  1. So much fun-I want to do this also!

  2. Oh! You're such a rebel...I love it ;)

  3. This is such an awesome concept. I love you and your wily ways :P

  4. This is definitely a radical concept! Awesome! Just make sure you only plant indigenous seeds, nothing invasive or alien. but I know you know that! Alex

  5. Ok - this is super awesome, and something I would NEVER have thought of - it is so wild and crazy! I can just imagine your mom, acting all nonchalant and you plant your seeds!


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