We hope that everyone has had a splendid week and is enjoying the cooler days! This workshop we talked about guerilla gardening! To many, myself included, it was a foreign topic, something that I had never really understood or talked about.
So what is guerilla gardening?
A Guerrilla is, by dictionary definition, 'a member of an irregular, usually indigenous military or paramilitary unit operating in small bands in occupied territory to harass and undermine the enemy, as by surprise raids'.
Therefore, guerilla gardening can be summed up as the act of gardening on land that the gardeners do not have the legal rights to cultivate, such as abandoned sites, areas that are not being cared for, or private property.
It encompasses a diverse range of people and motivations, ranging from gardeners who spill over their legal boundaries to gardeners with political influences who seek to provoke change by using guerrilla gardening as a form of protest or direct action. This practice has implications for land rights and land reform; aiming to promote re-consideration of land ownership in order to assign a new purpose or reclaim land that is perceived to be in neglect or misused.
Guerrilla gardeners generally work under the cover of darkness, organising “troop digs” and “actions” where keen guerrillas meet and transform an ordinary looking public (or private) space with trees, shrubs, annuals and more. They engage in on-going watering, maintenance and rubbish removal on planted sites, much of this also done under the cover of darkness. The general public is often encouraged, by signage located in the gardens, to water a guerrilla garden as they pass or collect rubbish if required.
For gardening in areas where access is difficult or a long dig is unsuitable, seed bombs are used (sometimes called green grenades). They are essentially seeds and soil held in an explosive or degradable capsule.
During our workshop this week, we tried our hand at making seed bombs! It was surprisingly easy and cheap. The steps are as follows:
- Combine equal amounts of clay (or potter’s powder) with compost or worm castings.
- If required add water as a binding agent (we did not need to do this!).
- Keep rolling both materials till you have seed bombs that are roughly the size of a golf ball.
- Once your balls are done, make a whole in the middle and add a teaspoon of seeds (we used a variety of flower seeds such as marigold, chamomile and wildflowers).
- When it is completed leave to dry in an egg carton.
- START YOUR OWN GREEN REVOLUTION!
Once the seed bombs have been planted, we wait for it to rain, which will wet the organic matter, swelling and forcing the bomb apart. The seeds will also soak up the rain and germinate into a lovely clay and compost soil. Hopefully in late spring and early summer the 'bomb site' will be filled with delightful flowers (remember to place the bombs in areas which will get enough light)!
Hopefully the above information encourages you to get on the guerilla gardening bandwagon!
Thank you to everyone who came out for our workshop and to those who stayed behind to help with our working bee! We really appreciate your support! Stay happy and remember to garden!