Everyone Guerilla Garden!
* This entry has a special place in my big, green heart. I force all my friends to read my blog (thanks everyone! Did I ever mention how awesome you are?), however most of them don't own houses. They live in urban centres, mostly in apartments, with little or no garden space. Consequently, though they (are forced) to read my blog, a lot of the information does not apply to them. So, I dedicate this entry to them and anyone else who is a non-garden gardener!
Even though Calgary has nowhere near the population, their geographical footprint is the same as that of New York. This is a ridiculous waste of space and the type of urban sprawl you can sadly see in cities across Canada. We are growing out without filling in. As a result, we are surrounded by empty spaces, trash-covered corners and land that looks like every other piece of land.
We have space, but no place.
Many people, myself included, hate the bland and monotonous feeling this type of land (mis)use creates, but we do nothing about it. I'm here to say that there is something we can do!
Let's keeping digging our gardens, but lets start digging our cities too. Let's be guerilla gardeners!
What are guerilla gardeners, you ask? Guerillas are non-violent, non-damaging gardeners that want to connect with their community, optimize the land around them and transform their neighbourhood in a positive way. Because of these gardeners, passersby are able to appreciate nature, even in their downtowns.
So here is my challenge to you: Take some extra seeds and plant cuttings and put them to use in your downtown. Once you have, celebrate your urban space victory by mentioning it on this blog. Let us know how and where you have reclaimed land!
Do a little, do a lot; just make sure you aren't just thinking about it - do it!
Below are 7 simple steps you can follow:
2. Gather your comrades
Let people know what you are doing and have them join in. It's just more fun that way.
3. Use local plants
This isn't about spending money and buying new things. It's about utilizing what's already there and giving back, so don't spend your money! Sometimes garden centres will have spare plants to donate to the cause. Or, go to your garden (or befriend a gardener... we are very nice people) and get some seeds, plant cuttings, etc.
4. Choose battle-worthy plants
Likely, you will be working with a small space that, initially, won't be recognized as a garden or plot for farming. Therefore, you need to use plants that are hardy and low-maintenance (e.g. plants that don't need a lot of water, cold resistant, etc.) Also, make sure to get noticed! Use plants that are colourful.
5. Don't forget to water
As you pass your reclaimed land to get to work, feed your flowers with some water from your water bottle.
Just like private gardens need help, drop by your spot with compost, coffee grounds, and egg shells.
7. Spread the Word!
Let people know! Put a marker in the soil, tape a poster nearby.
* Some great websites for inspiration: