Wednesday, November 09, 2011

Proof that I'm really a radical and a hippie,

deep in my soul.

I approve of guerrilla gardening.

I once came across a group of hippies in Victoria who had taken over an abandoned house and started a huge garden in it, complete with sophisticated four part compost heap, ducks and chickens and the start of a seed company. The city left them alone because otherwise no one would be there keeping the rats and mice away.

It was cool.

I think Italians do a lot of this. When you travel around by train or walk around the outskirts of towns, you see a lot of suspiciously organised looking patches of greenery by the sides of the tracks and on bits of waste ground. There are some allotments that are clearly officially approved allotments, but there's plenty of stuff that looks allotment-y but is in little nooks and crannies or on impossible looking slopes with obviously hand-built wooden terraces.

Wish I had the nerve.



Nicholas Trandem said...

Nope, just proof you're one of those "stuck in the dark ages" Catholics.

The notion that anyone could cultivate the commons was an essential part of the social fabric in the Age of Faith. It was only after the Reformation when "enlightened" man turned against what they termed "the tragedy of the commons" (the tragedy being that those worthless poor people were allowed to use it for sustenance and greedy bastards were not allowed to totally exploit it for profit). The "Agricultural Revolution" largely followed the model of the Reformation - instead of greedy bastards raping the Church and grabbing Church land and assets for themselves, it was greedy bastards raping the poor and grabbing the commons for themselves.

Anonymous said...

Might be more of that in Italy in the coming years...


Teresa B. said...

I remember seeing that happen in the Italian areas of Hamilton many years ago.
Haven't been back to notice if it still happens.
I remember seeing this going on on Brampton pathways that went through forestry types areas. With backyards so tiny - people would take advantage of these areas for planting tomatoes etc...

Anonymous said...

A friend pointed out to me that this is a major source of regional differences in produce quality in the US - whether there was Italian or Japanese settlement. Maybe Canada hippies are better at gardening; American hippies are really bad at it and if you only have hippies growing your vegetables they are so terrible. You need Italians and Japanese. - Karen