Is there a Guerilla Gardener in You?

I'd like to say that there is a Guerilla Gardener in me just waiting to come out. Ask my husband and he would probably tell you that I can envision a garden growing just about anywhere in my city. I'm always pointing and saying things like, "Why not plant a tree here, or flowers there?" I imagine turning abandoned buildings into greenhouses, parking-lot grass medians into botanical delights, and highway medians into evergreen forests.

Until recently I thought I was the only one that thought this way. Then one day I came across the Toronto Public Space Committee and their Guerilla Gardeners. I was overjoyed to discover that fellow gardeners out there were not just envisioning greener cities, but actively greening up the cities with their bare hands, guerrilla style.

Wondering what a Guerilla Gardener is exactly? Picture a group of people like you and me who secretly plant germinated seed bombs and "Please Water Me" signs in freshly made unauthorized gardens all over the city. These are Guerilla Gardeners and between buildings, on traffic medians, around billboards, near bus shelters or any non-green public place, you may run into one of their Guerrilla Gardens one of these days. They come in all ages, sizes and gardening experiences. No, they don't have to have gardening experience to participate. All they need is a passion to make more environmentally friendly cities in the secret of the day or night. I love that that gardening can be so beautiful and rebellious all at the same time.

I also love the Toronto Guerilla Gardeners' front page motto: "Without permit or license, we plant seeds and seedlings in all those neglected corners of public space. Join us as we vandalise the city with nature!" That is exactly what I want to do. I want to vandalize my city with nature. I want to make hot dark humid parking lots come alive with green and multicolored plants. I want 5 o'clock traffic to be something to look forward to instead of a place to fry in the middle of the day. But in this conservative non-green city I call home perhaps I must resort to guerrilla gardening tactics to bring back a little more nature. Maybe it's in my nature. What do you think?

Guerilla Gardening via Treehugger

Gloria Campos-Hensley
Featured Blogger

*Please note: Always try to use native seeds and plants! Non-native species can be invasive and harmful to the surrounding eco-system.

Jul 3, 2007
by Rob (not verified)

Guerilla Gardener

This is an excellent concept... kinda like Johnny Apple Seed. Just wish more people were sensitive to the potential. Wouldn't it be great to be able to travel an where and have abundant fruits growing everywhere on the road side for people to enjoy. However, most people will not water a plant if there is not something in ir for them. Sad fact... yet I will continue to plant. Thanks!

Jul 17, 2007
by Gloria Campos
Gloria Campos's picture

I looked up Johnny Apple Seed

Neat idea. My only concern is the planting of nonnative seeds.

Gloria Campos-Hensley

Sep 27, 2007
by flowers to go (not verified)

mad props

That is such a great exercise to act on will, and save the planet by our own account.


Sure it's just plants and flowers and a little clean up, but every little act counts.