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Guerrilla Gardening in our 'Hood

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Last summer our street community got together and decided to plant some fruit trees along the council verge of our street. We all agreed it would beautify our street and also, in time, allow us and our children to harvest fruit grown on disused space.

The idea of our children walking home from school and being able to pick a sun ripened apple off a tree and munch it as they walked home, was our driver I quietly asked a city councillor what the councils stand on people planting their street verge was and the reply was they don't really mind as long as the trees are maintained, don't interfere with services, including power lines, and remain attractive.

We never officially ask for consent from the Council, just thought it would be faster and easier just to do it. Anyway what sort of Guerrilla gardening would it be if we waited for consent from authorities. Firstly we checked where underground services were located.

We hired a post hole borer to dig through the clay pan we have in our area. added compost and planted a variety of grafted apples, and citrus. I used the milk bottle method for watering to help the trees get through the dry Hawkes Bay summers and mulched with lots of home made compost and horse manure.

This winter I plan to do some more grafting. I will graft several varieties of apples on to each tree so we have a good variety of fruit available. As a neighbourhood we have had a lot of interest from passer-bys wondering what we are doing and many people going back to their street with the hope of doing something similar. Imagine if every street was growing some edibles on their council strip, rather than just grass.

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