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The Green Life: How to Be a Guerrilla Gardener

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June 03, 2009

How to Be a Guerrilla Gardener

Planterbox It's difficult enough weaving through the sidewalk line-up of undesired fliers people are handing out on the street -- who really thinks pedestrians will stop and take them on their own accord from the flier boxes that pockmark city corners? Most often, these boxes end up empty and abandoned with no greater occupation than a bin for garbage or post for graffiti and stickers.

Street artist Posterchild had a different view: He saw these empty boxes as a great platform for a public installation and guerrilla-gardened his way through the streets of Toronto, leaving a trail of flowers and inspiration in his wake. 

Guerrilla gardeners all over the world are covertly taking back the orphaned patches of that earth sit neglected in their cities. One 71-year-old Parisian woman, upon hearing of this form of independent cultivation, was "immediately delighted and interested, being by nature strongly independent and against any form of authority and conformism. I know it might sound stupid at my age, but it is so!" Elise set to work revitalizing a large concrete planter on her street that was only there to discourage bums from taking up that corner. She enlisted the owner of a local flower shop to join her cause. By summer, she was relishing in the sight of blooming flowers where there used to be just dirt and drifters.

Bringing life and beauty to discarded public grounds is generally fairly low on most municipalities' to-do lists. But if it's high on yours, learn to make seed bombs and join the movement to fight filth and grow guerrilla gardens.

--Jordana Fyne

Image courtesy of Blade Diary.

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