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Radical Gardening

Updated on March 22, 2013

The Underground Gardening Movement

Guerrilla (or guerilla) gardeners grow plants on ground that they don't own. Their motives vary - many are trying to make the urban environment a more pleasant place. Some are protesting the inequality of land ownership. Some just have green fingers and thumbs and nowhere else to plant. These radical gardeners are making a statement, and they are increasingly visible and vocal about it.

We've come a long way from community gardens on empty lots, and seed bombing abandoned buildings. Radical gardeners are now growing up and up, banding together across the continents, and even planting up tiny spaces as art projects.

Moss Graffiti
Moss Graffiti

Moss Graftiti

Make your mark in moss

It's not quite as quick as spray paint, but it will get you into a lot less trouble and enhance the urban environment. Make a statement in your garden, or the street, by making art with moss. Visit Stories from Space to find out how to make your own moss graffiti.

Radical Gardening - Politics, Idealism and Rebellion in the Garden

War is the natural occupation of man... war-and gardening. Winston Churchill to Siegfried Sassoon, 1918 In the common public perception, contemporary gardening is understood as suburban, as leisure activity, as television makeover opportunity. Its origins are seen as religious or spiritual (Garden of Eden), military (the clipped lawn, the ha-ha and defensive ditches), aristocratic or monarchical (the stately home, the Royal Horticultural Society). Radical Gardening travels an alternative route, through history and across landscape, linking propagation with propaganda. For everyday garden life is not only patio, barbecue, white picket fence, topiary, herbaceous border.... From window box to veggie box, from political plot to flower power, this book uncovers and celebrates moments, movements, gestures, of a people's approach to gardens and gardening. It weaves together garden history with the counterculture, stories of individual plants with discussion of government policy, the social history of campaign groups with the pleasure and dirt of hands in the earth, as well as original interviews alongside media, pop and art references, to offer an informing and inspiring new take on an old subject.

Radical Roots - Sowing Green Seeds in Urban Environments

Here are some links to radical gardeners all over the world

On Guerrilla Gardening - A Handbook for Gardening without Boundaries

'Reynolds is quickly becoming both a subculture celebrity and a public intellectual, challenging ideas about what it means to live in a city' New York Times

'Probably the most unusual garden book of 2008, On Guerrilla Gardening is well-researched, thorough and truly inspirational' BBC Gardens Illustrated

'This lovely book is both a celebration of the international movement's recent history, and a how-to manual that advises on hardy species, planting techniques and social engineering' Guardian 'Exciting, high-adrenalin stuff. This is gardening repackaged for the 21st century' New Statesman

The Human Shrub

The Human Shrub
The Human Shrub

Green-fingered superhero the Human Shrub has scored a victory after shaming council chiefs into smartening up their gardens.

Growing Stuff - An Alternative Guide to Gardening

Growing Stuff is an ideal companion for anyone wishing to become part of the grow-your-own renaissance. It is packed with ideas to help transform windowsills, balconies, courtyards and gardens into urban oases. Written in an engaging and informal way, this quirky book is a perfect introduction to green-fingered activity, and is sure to convert even wary or novice gardeners to this creative and wide-ranging practice. With easy-to-follow instructions on the basics of growing flowers, herbs, vegetables and more, Growing Stuff not only provides an excellent introduction to the world of horticulture, but also looks at alternative approaches to growing and landscaping. Learn how to make seed bombs, grow carrots in Wellington boots and even construct your own mini polytunnel. It also features wide selection of creative recipes show you how to transform the fruits of your labour into culinary and craft delights. Growing Stuff puts the excitement back into gardening and shows that organic edibles can be grown in even the most unexpected places.

Holes of Happiness - The Pothole Gardener at work

Leave your mark - Lob a seed bomb into the conversation, and watch it grow :)

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    • profile image

      reasonablerobby 5 years ago

      I never knew about the project in Todmorden. Must give it a visit and take some photos.

    • TheMummyNextDoor profile image

      TheMummyNextDoor 6 years ago

      Hey, well done for lens on guerilla gardening, a worthy campaign! I hope you're getting involved in International Sunflower Guerilla Gardening Day May 1st (, I certainly am! x