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On Guerrilla Gardening: The Why, What, and How of Cultivating Neglected Public Space
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On Guerrilla Gardening: The Why, What, and How of Cultivating Neglected Public Space

3.74 of 5 stars 3.74  ·  rating details  ·  196 ratings  ·  30 reviews

When Richard Reynolds began planting flowers secretly at night outside his tower block in South London he had no idea he was part of a growing global movement committed to combating the forces of neglect, land shortage and apathy towards public spaces. But his blog attracted other guerrillas from around the world to share their experiences of the

Hardcover, 224 pages
Published May 27th 2008 by Bloomsbury USA (first published May 5th 2008)
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I really dug this book. I have been a guerrilla gardener off and on now for several years, mostly planting giant sunflowers. To clarify, a guerrilla gardener gardens on neglected public land without permission. Discovering this book was like finding the handbook, and network, I always wished I had. Richard Reynolds takes it farther than I had previously imagined, enlisting troops to go on large digs (roadside embankments, traffic circles, vacant lots, etc.) in an attempt to beautify the urban la ...more
Pete Sharon
I read this when I was living with my first garden in London, and was totally smitten by the gardening bug. (This is easy to fall prey to, since the UK has a ferociously avid gardening culture that has no equivalent in the US. For example, the Chelsea garden show is covered on TV for three consecutive nights--in prime time!)
So now, I find myself slammed down in Slummerville, MA and completely surrounded by pavement, and this book is giving me ideas. Total punk rock approach to what has tradition
A very basic introduction to guerrilla gardening. So basic, I'm not exactly sure what demographic would read and learn by it. Written largely from a British perspective, for British spaces (plant suggestions are somewhat limited for other climates).
It has an oddly formal layout, a weird medium for this particular political message. I get that it's essentially a "handbook"--this is borne out much better in the latter half of the book than the beginning (the first half is history/politics; the se

Ever heard of guerrilla gardening? People all over the world are taking over unused land and planting gardens! It is such a fun idea, especially if the land is lying fallow. And now there is a manual for people who want to try it: On Guerrilla Gardening. The small book includes the history of the movement and pictures of people out there doing it.

Did you know that Victory Gardens during World War II supplied 42 percent of all fresh food to the country? There seems to have been a recent resurgenc
On Guerrilla Gardening is a delightful little book! The author mixes history, politics, environmentalism and practical gardening into an enjoyable weekend read.
Guerrilla gardening can be a strong political statement about the waste of good land and the potential for abundance even when we’re faced with a “food crisis,” or it can just be something you do for fun.
My only concern is the “waging battle” metaphor that sprouts throughout the book; I wish even as we guerrilla garden, that we could mak
Abby Hagler
The guy who wrote this book is hilariously candid. I wonder if he took his notes from a blog and just made a book out of it. He has funny side notes, such as not making jokes about gorillas and guerillas. He also has a lot of helpful information about plants, about organizing yourself to become a guerilla gardener, and about re-envisioning space around us. There's an entire web site dedicated to stories of guerilla gardening.
This sounds like a really fantastic idea, although I probably ought to get my own garden under control before I start toying around in random places. I do, however, find myself picking out weedy, dead-looking spots that could use some sprucing up every time I'm out and about. This is a really comprehensive how-to guide and it's filled with stories and bits of dry humor, so it's not like reading an instruction manual at all.
This is a pretty quick read, but it's got some great information about Guerrilla Gardening. The author is the founder of the website and gives an overview of the history of guerrilla gardening, how-tos, etc. It's a pretty good read and has inspired me to think about places in the Boston area that I can beautify with plants.
Aug 27, 2008 Aaron marked it as to-read
Really excited about this concept, especially in how it relates to other interventionist/subversive educational strategies (my own nascent terminology, I'm sure there is a better one out there) like culture jamming, graffiti and certain performative/conceptual art work. Really excited to read this and perhaps start some guerrilla gardening myself around the town!
An odd little book.

Guerrilla gardeners are people who garden, without permission, on property they do not own.

Includes anecdotes from many cities, but Milwaukee is not one of them.

It is not surprising to learn that some elected officials would rather have an ugly, neglected space than a space beautified by someone who is not under their thumb.


This was a lot of fun & surprisingly practical. Lots of great photos. There is plenty of advice about every aspect and complication of gardening without permission. Since I have already begun a bit of unauthorized planting it's cool to feel like part of something bigger. I especially liked the historical bits. (thanks for the gift Taylor)
Jack Ngan
Aug 11, 2010 Jack Ngan rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: anyone interested in playing outdoors, naturality, beautifying and urban culture
Recommended to Jack by: My room mate
I enjoyed it a lot. It provides a new perspective to and appreciation for gardening by introducing it as an activity that's part of a community or culture rather than an independent project in your back yard (which is kick-ass too though). This book has definitely enriched my life by presenting me with a foreign pleasure I now enjoy.
I enjoyed this book. It was sort of a revolutionary's approach to gardening, about taking over public spaces, changing the world, and well, making things pretty. : ) I don't know that I'll become a guerrilla gardener, as I have a short enough attention span with the garden in my own back yard, but it was a fun read.
Alison Kagen
great subject & a good collection of information, hints & anecdotes; but strangely not compelling, probably due to writing style; if you're already sympathetic/interested/possibly semi-guerrilla already, the frameworks of reasons for g/gardening & what one might garden are helpful
A really entertaining read!
An interesting idea, hard for me to grasp as a rural-living person, but I could see how city-dwellers would be into reclaiming un-gardened space and making it their own. A bit too heavy handed on do this not that, call it this, not that.
this doesn't feel like a book, its more like a website, where they only let the surface stories out. if you'd like to know a few things about the guerrilla gardening movement, i'd be happy to lend my copy, but don't buy it.
Nov 05, 2010 Leah added it
This book was interesting. I enjoyed it. Not anything I would need to own. Pretty basic information on the how-to, but really informative on how to be a guerilla gardener politely and how to handle others.
This was an incredibly enjoyable and informative read about the world of guerrilla gardening. Hopefully I will still feel inspired by it come spring and do a little illicit gardening of my own.
I was surprised to see a stack of this title at the library! Brought back memories of my involvement in Gardeners Against the Work Ethic.
(GAWE). Excuse me, I must go plant things now.
Jun 24, 2008 Shanna rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommended to Shanna by: NYTimes
Shelves: enviro-nature
Pretty cover.
First half much better than the second half. Second half should have just read: "Put some seeds in the ground" or something of the sort.
Nothing really new, but fun.
Joshua Sierk
always carry seeds with you.
grow the world. it's natural!
lovely photos in this book.

thanks to my sister&brother-in-law for the gift of the book
I've just started the book but it explains why I have suddenly seen a bunch of sunflowers around the lamp posts in my neighborhood and other places - good for them.
Heart-lifting reading that inspires more than one people to take part of this from the ground action ! :D
Oct 10, 2012 Karen added it
Another manifesto to go plant some goodies on land you don't own. Love it!
Very subjective but filled with lots of interesting ideas and history
Fascinating little book about gardening outside the lines.
Andy Stainton

Plant like a motherfucka!
funny, useful, inspiring
I <3 Guerrilla Gardening!
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