The Guerrilla Gardening Guidebook – Safety

BeautyAndBeast

“Beauty and the Beast” – Lamar Avenue – Wilkinsburg, PA – If you would have told me 10 years ago that I would be gardening here… I would have laughed…

Safety

This post is part of a larger body of work titled ”The Guerrilla Gardening Guidebook”. For the introduction and table of contents please click here

I originally posted this post with the title “Safety in the Urban Jungle”, it was popular and fit this series so I am posting it again wearing a new edit and photos… Hope you enjoy!…

I like to think that I write about experience, experience tells me I need to write about safety! Most people probably don’t consider gardening a dangerous hobby, and it normally isn’t when performed on the safety of your own property. Technically speaking, the moment you step on to property that isn’t yours, you are guilty of trespassing, alter the property in any way, and now it’s vandalism, remove anything… and it’s burglary… Which is a felony in PA!

Most of the time what you are doing will be seen as a good thing, and you will find support from the neighbors. Occasionally your presence will not be accepted, and it’s time to do some serious soul-searching. As with any “wild” area like a severely blighted urban community, you will encounter hazards that will need to be dealt with. This post is to relate some of the safety lessons I have learned while guerrilla gardening in a blighted community.

I would like to mention that while a lot of people believe guerilla gardening is a new thing, it has been around for a long time. Contrary to popular belief, guerilla gardenings roots have nothing to do with food, and everything to do with drugs. The first “guerilla gardeners” were pot farmers, the term was coined by them for the obvious “renegade” aspect of what they were doing. Wikipedia claims it was coined in New York in 1973, the term was used much earlier than that though.

I think the most important rule that I could possibly write about is “know your surroundings”, I seriously can’t stress this enough. When you are doing “anything” in a sketchy area be aware of everything, and everyone around you. If you are about to walk through an area that you think is suspect, it doesn’t hurt to be preparing a mental plan on what you would do if something goes wrong.

I have been in several situations where I was obviously being followed for whatever reason, I don’t carry cash and only had garden tools on me. After identifying the situation I immediately made myself as visible as possible by walking in the street and heading for the closest, most occupied area I could. I know at least a few people on every street and was able to make it a friend’s house, the guy walked past the house and waited on the corner for me to leave. I was able to wait him out but this could have been so much worse, I am lucky to know someone in at least 50% of the neighborhoods in Wilkinsburg.

daf

“Miss Lorna’s Daf” – Whitney Avenue – Wilkinsburg, PA – When working near a street… Always face the street…

I think “keeping a low profile” is a logical rule, but just in case I’m going to cover it. Blending in with your surroundings can save your life, if you walk around looking like you have money… well… people will think you have money. Just the simple fact of looking “normal” can be the difference, skip the straw farmers hat! A great secret is to figure out what color shirts your local DPW wear, then purchase several shirts in that color, makes you look a little more “official”. Sometimes the situation will put you in regular contact with people, always say hello and speak if spoken to… remember that they are now your neighbors, and will play a huge part in the success or failure of your garden.

Sometimes it is acceptable to garden in plain sight, in the case of food production you should consider hiding it. I have found that allowing people to freely pick is not always a good thing, people damage plants and often take unripe, or way more than they could possibly personally use. Now when I have non-gardeners on my sites I always spend time educating on the “harvesting” aspect of gardening. Gardens used as a protest, memorial or beautification should obviously be visible, public guerilla gardening efforts have issues as well.

I pride myself on my ability to completely zone out while I garden, this was a tough one to break. If you have the ability to work as a team I would recommend a spotter, someone to have your back. Guerilla gardening requires you to be aware of everything around you, even while you work you should be aware of everything. I was taught this lesson by an 11-year-old boy, he was always trying to find me and sneak up on me. He got close enough to reach out and touch me on several occasions, one time I almost punched him in the face, this was a huge wake up call.

If someone can get close enough to touch you while you are gardening, then they are close enough to rob you. When you do get approached by a stranger, stand up immediately, face them head on and NEVER get caught with your pants down. Consider a 6′ perimeter around yourself “personal space” and do not let them in it, if they do break that perimeter let them know you want “personal space”, they will normally understand, if they don’t “SOMETHING IS NOT RIGHT”, act accordingly!

Things you may find can harm you as well, caution should be taken with anything that you come in contact with. Guns should always be considered loaded and lethal, age weakens components and can make it very dangerous. If you ever find a gun, leave it as you found it and immediately call the police, they will respond quickly.

Cookie

“C is for Cookie” – Taylor Way – Wilkinsburg, PA – I was out photographing an alley on the other side of Wilkinsburg when I came across this hat… As I was photographing this hat a man came out of a house and told me to “mind my business”… Which I did… It wasn’t until later that I realized this was a meeting point… Some things never change…

Drug dealers don’t keep their drugs and guns at home with them, they often stash them nearby in a vacant house or yard. If you ever find one of these stashes, “DO NOT TAKE ANYTHING!!!” 9 out of 10 times you ARE BEING WATCHED, they do not stray far from the stash. Your best chance of leaving this situation with your life is to walk away like you saw nothing, I would forget I ever saw it and if anything tell someone else what you saw and let them call the police. Basically I am saying if you ever find yourself in this situation the most important thing is to get as far away, as quickly as possible. What you do from that point forward is on you, but your physical safety should be considered.

Animals can also be a serious problem with dogs being the most common, and often the most dangerous. I have always had an unexplainable thing with animals and rarely have problems, but it does happen. Dogs are almost always curious animals that don’t want to hurt you, extreme home environments are the problem. Starvation, neglect, fighting, abuse and torture of dogs does happen, this can turn an otherwise friendly dog into a killing machine.

If you encounter an animal in this condition after you secure your own life you need to report it to the police, they can handle it. Mace can be a good dog deterrent, and is rather effective on humans as well. I was planting pumpkins in the backyard of the house across the street, I heard the barking before I even saw it. The biggest, scariest pit bull I have ever seen was hauling ass right towards me, I spent the next two hours chain-smoking cigarettes locked in the kitchen of an abandoned house.

Hypodermic needles can also be commonplace, with blight comes pain. Never ever touch a used needle, if you have to do it, wear protection. If finding needles becomes commonplace, talk to a doctor or hospital and acquire a used needle box with a safety lid. Paramedics and police will respond when called about a dirty needle, they have the equipment needed to recover used needles. Basically the safest thing you can do is dial “911″, they would rather pick up a needle than pick you up after stabbing yourself.

In closing I just want to stress how important being aware of your surroundings at all times is, this WILL save your life. The boy scouts have a motto “Always Be Prepared” that I think applies nicely here, keep your head up. Guerilla gardeners fight blight with beauty, wherever there is vacant land you will find us in one form or another.

plant petunias and question everything – chriscondello

This site… And all the photographs and information presented within are provided free of charge by the author… I am not affiliated with any product or business… Only myself… Writing this blog takes a ton of time… If you find any of this information helpful, please consider purchasing a print from my online store… It is obviously not a requirement… But it helps…

I sell prints of my photography here – http://www.society6.com/chriscondello Or you can contact me directly at c.condello@hotmail.com for commissions or locally/personally produced prints… Thank you for reading…

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

The Guerrilla Gardening Guidebook – Annuals

moonflower

“Moonflower” – Whitney Avenue – Wilkinsburg, PA – Datura wrightii… Sacred Moonflower that was given as a gift a few years ago… Frost kills it to the ground… Depending on how harsh of a winter I have it typically sprouts again in spring… This plant also creates a ton of seeds making it a perfect plant for vacant lot gardening…

Annuals

This post is part of a larger body of work titled ”The Guerrilla Gardening Guidebook”. For the introduction and table of contents please click here

Every guerrilla gardener dreams of a wall of color growing in place of litter and blight, nothing can match the flash and glitter of a profusion of flowering annuals when a statement is to be made.  When it comes to sheer flower power, no other plant matches up to these prolific bloomers.

Many garden annuals bloom practically nonstop from late spring or early summer, only stopping with the killing fall frost. By definition an annual plant lives for only one year, completing its entire growing season in one year. It germinates, develops into a mature plant, blooms, sets seed, and finally dies… All in a span of several months…

Some annuals, especially hardy ones such as sweet alyssum and larkspur, can reseed in your garden. They may come back the next year without even planting them. This can be a good thing, or a disastrous situation depending on what you are dealing with. Many self-seeders are borderline invasive if not full-blown invasive. Amaranth comes to mind, setting millions of seeds that seem to sprout legs and walk all over the neighborhood. Research and experience will help determine your problem plants, deadhead your flowers before the seeds fully develop.

Most annual plants die because of a hormonal trigger set off by seed formation or ripening. Gardeners can trick this natural phenomenon, at least for a time, by continuously removing the dead flowers… AKA Deadheading… By preventing seed formation, deadheading encourages the annual to continue blooming an a desperate attempt to set seed… Sometimes this will promote blooming in an overachiever… Some modern annuals are sterile and do not set seed, they typically bloom right up until frost without any human intervention.

Impatiens, petunias and marigolds are probably the most popular garden annuals sold today… Probably too popular because I see them everywhere… I swear to God I can tell you what annuals home depot stocks just by walking through a suburban neighborhood. I can also typically tell you who shops at privately owned nurseries… The world of available annuals is constantly expanding, though I recommend the standards for guerrilla gardening due to the issues associated with maintenance.

Not all annuals are created equal as far as temperament and growing requirements are concerned. Annuals can be classified into several broad categories, all with different characteristics. Knowing the specifics of the annual you are planting helps you understand the plants habits and needs.

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“Pineapple Sage” – Whitney Avenue – Wilkinsburg, PA – Stunning pineapple-scented gold foliage covers this plant through the summer months… As fall approaches… Pineapple Sage begins stretching towards the low sun followed by a display of red flowers often unmatched in the autumn garden…

Tender Perennials – Many of the annuals sold at the typical garden center are actually tender perennials. These are long blooming perennials in their native habitats… But the cold of winter… Not their genetic makeup, kills them in the winter… So they behave like annuals when grown in the north…

Warm-Season Annuals – Flourishing in heat and blooming best in summer, warm-season annuals like zinnia, marigold, and cosmos cannot survive even a light frost. Freezing temperatures kill tender seedlings and sometimes seeds. Because plants take several months to mature and begin flowering, you may want to start your seeds indoors.

Cool-Season Annuals – Nasturtium, sweet alyssum, pot marigold, and other cool season annuals flower best during cool weather and wither or die in during summers heat. Freezing temperatures usually do not kill seeds, which often self-sow and overwinter in the garden, sprouting in spring or summer. In temperate regions, early planting provides the best show from cool-season annuals… Allowing them to bloom until the heat of summer…

Hardy Annuals – This type of cool-season annual withstands the most cold. Sow the seeds in spring before frost danger has passed or in late fall for spring germination. Hardy annuals include Iceland poppy, pot marigold and larkspur.

The following are annuals tolerant of guerrilla gardening conditions…

Snapdragon, Begonia, flowering kale, pot marigold, periwinkle, bachelor’s-button, cornflower, Cleome, coleus, larkspur, cosmos, annual dahlia, dianthus, California poppy, Annual Blanket Flower, Sunflower, Strawflower, Heliotrope, Impatiens, Lantana, Sweet Pea, Lobelia, sweet Alyssum, Flowering Tobacco, Corn poppy, shirley poppy, Flanders Poppy, Geranium, Perilla, Petunia, Annual Phlox, Moss Rose, Zinnia, Marigold, Nasturtium, Verbena, Pansy.

Planting should be done on a cool cloudy day, rain in the forecast can be a huge help whenever possible. Water the cell-packs so the plants slide right out. If they do not, push the bottom of the cell with your thumb, and the roots should pop right out. Well grown annuals will have a network of white roots growing around the soil ball.

A root bound plants roots should be broken apart before transplanting, this encourages the roots to grow out into the soil as opposed to continuing around in a circle. Gently split the matted root ball up the middle by pulling with both hands in opposite directions and untangling as many roots as possible.

Water immediately after planting… Because the plants are young with relatively tiny root systems, you may need to water every day for a few weeks until everything gets established. Annuals that are allowed to wilt at this stage of their life, often suffer for a considerable amount of time after.

plant petunias and question everything – chriscondello

This site… And all the photographs and information presented within are provided free of charge by the author… I am not affiliated with any product or business… Only myself… Writing this blog takes a ton of time… If you find any of this information helpful, please consider purchasing a print from my online store… It is obviously not a requirement… But it helps…

I sell prints of my photography here – http://www.society6.com/chriscondello Or you can contact me directly at c.condello@hotmail.com for commissions or locally/personally produced prints… Thank you for reading…

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

The Guerrilla Gardening Guidebook – Plant Selection

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“Heucherella” – I am including this photograph to illustrate a point… This was an empty pot when I got it… Tagless and destined for the dumpster… An inspection of the roots revealed life and a crown was clearly evident after some minor digging… I took a chance on it and several others…

Plant Selection

This post is part of a larger body of work titled ”The Guerrilla Gardening Guidebook”. For the introduction and table of contents please click here

A tough subject to write about for the guerrilla gardener, often the deciding factors end up being cost and availability. Given the high likelihood that the garden will be destroyed faster than it was created, I recommend starting with the cheapest plants available. A garden that survives through the first or second year can then be considered for nicer plants, but only after passing the test of time. Trust me when I say that if someone really wants to mess with your garden, there is very little you can do other than use plants that can survive regular abuse.

Stick to the tried and true plants, do not choose the newest cultivars or craziest colors. Plants that are considered tough in their original “un bred” state, can become extremely finicky when you get into the special cultivars. An example of this is Echinacea, look through any catalog and you will find dozens of colors and bloom styles. Although the Native Echinacea purpurea is a “bomb proof” plant perfectly suited to the harshest conditions you can throw at it, almost all of the new cultivars are extremely finicky and have little resistance to all but the most controlled garden environments. These finicky cultivars should be avoided until you have a good idea of the space you are gardening, if some “old school” flowers survive and flourish in the location, then, and only then should you consider adding some flair.

Plant acquisition is a surprisingly straight forward task, step one is taking all of the plant magazines you receive in the mail and throw them straight in the garbage. Plant porn has no place here! Step two is being patient, greenhouses and box stores order much more stock than they could ever possibly get rid of. Given the recent surge in dumpster diving hipster trendiness, dumpsters are being padlocked or waste stored indoors until right before pick-up. My suggestion to you is to find a manager and ask if he would be willing to sell you any plants destined for the dumpster at a discounted rate. More often than not they will be happy to do this, and will typically let things go for pennies on the dollar. This method is typically most effective in the off-season, in the peak sales season discounts are much less due to demand.

SingleRed

“Single Red” – Whitney Avenue – Wilkinsburg, PA – With bulb planting season mistakenly thought of as being only the month of October… Discounts can be found anywhere that stocks them…

Guerrilla gardening often forces a gardener to perpetually study plants, in doing so we often learn tricks pertaining to specific plants and planting methods. Fruit trees for example can be bought for next to nothing anytime other than early spring, I am always asked if it is possible to plant a fruit tree in the middle of Summer… Of course you can… If the choice comes down to leaving a tree in a pot until spring or just planting it as soon as possible… The answer will always be plant it…

For my permaculture based article on rehabilitating discount plants click here

Seeds are another method of getting plants, about mid-summer the prices drop to next to nothing. Not many people realize it, but seed packets have expiration dates on them. A secret about that date is it is really only there to force the stores to buy new seeds each year, think of it as a sell by date. Although seeds lose viability with age, many are perfectly viable long after the expiration date.

The last source of plants I am going to quickly talk about is friends sharing. Gardeners are typically proud of what they have, many of us love our plants so much we won’t throw out our divisions. Those divisions often only cost the time it takes to tour a garden, an early lesson you will learn is people like to share plants. Trading can also be effective, always have a few divisions potted up just in case opportunity comes calling… A plant given away today often returns ten fold in the future…

The next few chapters will each deal with different types of plants and their uses in the guerrilla garden…

plant petunias and question everything – chriscondello

This site… And all the photographs and information presented within are provided free of charge by the author… I am not affiliated with any product or business… Only myself… Writing this blog takes a ton of time… If you find any of this information helpful, please consider purchasing a print from my online store… It is obviously not a requirement… But it helps…

I sell prints of my photography here – http://www.society6.com/chriscondello Or you can contact me directly at c.condello@hotmail.com for commissions or locally/personally produced prints… Thank you for reading…

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

The Guerrilla Gardening Guidebook – Water

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“Urban Rain Garden” – The Garden Table Urban Garden – Rebecca Avenue – Wilkinsburg, PA – Looking in the background you will notice a brick cutaway in the berm running along the abandoned house… I built that there because the gutters above leak profusely during rain events… The rain garden is my answer to the flooding that used to result because of this… Flooding that before this rain garden regularly covered 50% of the lot…

Water

This post is part of a larger body of work titled ”The Guerrilla Gardening Guidebook”. For the introduction and table of contents please click here

Whiskey is worth drinking, but water’s worth fighting for. Water is the great garden equalizer, any guerrilla gardener will tell you lugging water 4 gallons at a time in the middle of a heat wave sucks. Did you know you have to do this, like, every couple of days? Vegetables require regular water for the first month, then periodic water depending on the amount of rain that falls. Ornamental plants also require water during the first month of establishment, perennials that make it through the first year may never need supplemental irrigation. Annuals will need water throughout the entire course of their life, regular in establishment and periodic after.

There are options other than lugging water, observation during rainfall is often the key to success. Leaky gutters, when coupled with a rain collection barrel is just one example of collection without physical contact or alteration… A screen placed over the top will keep leaves and debris out. Where a roof does not exist, create one. One inch of rain, falling on a 1000 square foot roof will produce 600 gallons of water. One inch of rain on a small shed sized roof will fill a small rain barrel.

Even a rain barrel has its limits, with most commercial models topping out at 50 gallons. The important thing to remember is without a downspout, even a thousand rain barrels won’t do you any good. The answer to this problem is often as simple as meeting the neighbors, you would be surprised how receptive someone can be to a rain barrel when it does not involve any money or work on their part. If saving the local stream does not seal the deal, offer vegetables.

Storm water run-off is a huge problem in urban areas, pavement is quick to shed water and storm drains quickly drain that water to the local stream. In a pollution, litter and chemical free world this would be a perfect system, but we are not any of these things and therefore our watershed suffer the consequences. Urban lots consisting of compacted fill often do not soak up rainfall. Depending on the grade of the lot, much of that water is allowed to run right off it into the street. Every effort should be made to keep this water in the garden, or slow it down enough to allow it time to absorb into the earth.

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“Grand Arrival” – Whitney Avenue – Wilkinsburg, PA – The sewers on our street our filled to ground level with litter and debris… This is the result of a Summer thunderstorm… As you can see by the photo not everyone thinks this is a problem…

Rain gardens and bioswales, when placed based on your observations of water flow, can effectively harness run-off for plant use. Water flowing down hill can be effectively stopped using a miniature bio-swale, excess water can then be routed to a central rain garden. Essentially this system is nothing more than small trenches dug perpendicular to the flow of water, the downhill side can be reinforced with a small dam made with the soil removed from the trench. This trench is then filled with loose organic materials, and covered in stones or wood mulch. This trench can then be routed to a central rain garden, with the garden beds radiating outwards from the collection garden in the center. My theory behind this is that the rain garden would distribute the collected water down the connected gardens, working essentially like a wick style irrigation system.

The plant-based answer I would give to the water problem is to use plants that don’t require supplemental water. Xeriscape plants like sedums, thyme and Echinacea often require no water beyond the time of planting. Any succulent will grow in the worst soil you can find, or the driest conditions you can throw at it. Some plants, like “Stella Dora” day lily are very common in parking lots, not only are they drought tolerant, they can be accidentally cut to the ground and still grow fast enough to continue blooming after a few short weeks. Native plants should be where your research begins, many of them have already adapted safety responses to the occasional drought or dry spell. Much more on plants later…

Properly amended soil holds more water than flat lifeless dirt, the amount of water your soil can hold has a direct relation to how much organic material it contains. Leaf mulch and grass clippings are often readily available in urban neighborhoods, these can be mixed into the soil, or layered on top to slowly decompose… You would be surprised how much organic material, when left on the surface of a garden, will be consumed and moved by the earthworms below… Learning about earthworms made me a lazy gardener… That’s right… I’m blaming it on the worms!..

Mulch is a material placed over the soil to reduce water loss through evaporation. Mulch is typically an organic material such as wood chips or hay, whatever is available locally is typically best. A mulch layer should be applied generously, keep in mind that water lost to evaporation only means you will have to replace that water later. When possible, a thick layer of mulch on top of your new topsoil layer will greatly increase the water holding capability of your garden.

plant petunias and question everything – chriscondello

This site… And all the photographs and information presented within are provided free of charge by the author… I am not affiliated with any product or business… Only myself… Writing this blog takes a ton of time… If you find any of this information helpful, please consider purchasing a print from my online store… It is obviously not a requirement… But it helps…

I sell prints of my photography here – http://www.society6.com/chriscondello Or you can contact me directly at c.condello@hotmail.com for commissions or locally/personally produced prints… Thank you for reading…

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

The Guerrilla Gardening Guidebook – Sunlight

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“First Rays of Sunlight” – Stone Cairn – Frick Park – Pittsburgh, PA – Another renegade activity I take part in… Natural sculptures made of stones found on site…

Sunlight

This post is part of a larger body of work titled ”The Guerrilla Gardening Guidebook”. For the introduction and table of contents please click here

Urban environments can be thought of as a collection of microclimates, one of the greatest determining factors of these is the sun. Plants require sunlight to survive, so gardening often becomes a hunt for the best sunlight. Knowing a few little facts about the sun can help you determine where the best light in an area will be.

The earth spins around the sun in a counterclockwise motion. If the earth was straight up and down the sun would be 90 degrees to the earth at all times, the result of which would be no seasons. Because the earth tilts 23.5 degrees, in the winter we are tilted away from the sun, and in the summer we lean towards the sun. The sun rises in the eastern sky, and sets in the west. During the summer months, the sun passes directly overhead. During the winter months, the sun will be much lower in the sky and to the South. March 23rd and September 23rd are known as the vernal and Autumnal equinox, this is the day the vertical sun crosses the equator.

Walls that face to the south will act as heat traps, the reflected sunlight heats the ground, and in turn will heat the area at the foot of the wall. North facing walls on the other hand can experience nothing more than indirect light most of the year, this side of a building will stay frozen much longer than the south facing wall during the spring thaw. The effects of this can raise your USDA hardiness rating a zone or two on the south facing wall, and possibly lower it on the north wall. The reflection of solar energy is known as albedo and can be harnessed for use in the garden, this is a subject I have already explored in a previous post… You can find my post here- Albedo and Absorption of Solar Energy

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“Sunlight Through Pineapple Sage” – Whitney Avenue – Wilkinsburg, PA – The first peaks of sunlight photographed through my pineapple sage… This salvia is photosensitive… Meaning it blooms only after we reach a certain amount of hours of sunlight… In this case around 12 hours of light and 12 of dark… AKA – Fall…

East and west facing walls are a little more complicated, even if both walls get the exact same amount of direct sunlight. The first thing you will notice through observation is that the soil at an east facing wall is always drier than the west. The wall to the east has the benefit of warming throughout the course of the entire morning, although the west wall is also warming, it is happening much slower. By the time the sun starts warming the west wall, the ambient temperature is up, and the east wall does not loose heat as fast as the west after nightfall. Because of this, you can often get away with plants typically suited for full sun on the east side of a building, and plants suited for full shade on the west.

I have published several other articles about shade gardening, for that reason I will not be writing about it now… Instead you can check them out from these two little links – Gardening in the Shade – Woodland Mimicry in the Urban Garden

Determining the type of sunlight you are working with will not take all day. Now that you understand how the sun moves across the sky relative to the current season, you will be able to map your gardens sunlight without even being on site. Just remember the sun rises in the east and sets to the west… The sun will be high in the sky in the summer… And low and to the south in the winter… Eastern sunlight is always better than west, and south facing walls create a warmer microclimate than walls facing other directions… Easy as pie…

plant petunias and question everything – chriscondello

This site… And all the photographs and information presented within are provided free of charge by the author… I am not affiliated with any product or business… Only myself… Writing this blog takes a ton of time… If you find any of this information helpful, please consider purchasing a print from my online store… It is obviously not a requirement… But it helps…

I sell prints of my photography here – http://www.society6.com/chriscondello Or you can contact me directly at c.condello@hotmail.com for commissions or locally/personally produced prints… Thank you for reading…

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

The Guerrilla Gardening Guidebook – Soil Conditions

© chriscondello 2013

“Sunset Clover” – Hamnett Place Community Garden – Jeanette Street – Wilkinsburg, PA – Clover growing in the lawn of a local community garden… Clover is often one of the first plants to take root in a recently disturbed lot… If it is not… Then you should be planting it… A nitrogen accumulator that benefits the topsoil through decomposition…

Soil conditions

This post is part of a larger body of work titled ”The Guerrilla Gardening Guidebook”. For the introduction and table of contents please click here

When guerrilla gardening in urban environments, all soil should be considered contaminated fill until you have a good reason to believe otherwise. Lead has been banned from household paint since 1978, all homes built before this time are possible sources of contamination. For this reason I always recommend testing your soil before breaking ground. Empty lots typically had structures on them at one time, the way the building came down can affect the level of contaminants left in the soil. For example… A wood frame house that burnt to the ground will have a greater effect than a brick building that was professionally demolished.

When a building is built, or a road bed laid, the extent of the excavation extends well beyond the actual perimeter of the building or road. The excavation will be considerably larger to facilitate construction. The subsequent soil that is used to fill this hole back up is never black compost-gold, it is always the cheapest material available. Therefore all of the “no-till” concepts are pretty much thrown out the window. Soil structure less than 50 years old, in my mind, is exempt from the idea that tilling will disturb the existing layers of soil.

Much of the soil I find in my neighborhood is a mixture of yellow and red clay, shale, slag, coal and sand… Only occasionally do I find black topsoil deeper than a few inches, and the places I have found topsoil deeper can often be explained by a past homeowners love of gardening. Tilling is often necessary, and amendment required.

Oftentimes, the brown spaces near streets and sidewalks are only filled with stone and sand. Plants will often be seen growing in these desolate spaces, but they are only growing in a thin layer of garbage and debris that has broken down at the surface. Cut the weeds to the ground, cover them in newspaper, and fill it with as much rich, organic material as you can fit. Plantings go right in this layer, when putting this bed to rest do your best to mix your new layer with the existing one… The following year repeat…

R-Room

“Forget-Me-Not” – Lamar Avenue – Wilkinsburg, PA – Growing in the decaying garage at the end of the alley behind my house… Freemasons began using the flower in the 1920’s as a symbol not to forget the poor and desperate… Perfect flower for Wilkinsburg…

If food is in your garden plans, get a soil test done regardless of cost. If you are reading this and thinking it is not really required, Google “lead poisoning” before reading any further. Plant roots often reach much deeper in the soil than you would think, a few inches of compost placed on top of 12 inches of heavy metal contaminated fill does nothing to protect you from the possibility of lead poisoning. If the space is relatively small, you could always excavate by hand and fill the hole with organic material. The issue of what to do with the soil is typically the bastard of the situation, there’s really no good answer… Phytoremediation would be my answer… Read my post about it here

The urban areas targeted by the average guerrilla gardener are commonly vacant lots that at one time contained a structure. Demolition contracts typically go to the lowest bidder, and corners often have to be cut. In my neighborhood, the second and third floors are typically ripped off and placed in a dumpster. The rest of the structure is then pushed into the basement, and covered over with a few inches of the cheapest fill available. Brick buildings are the worst, they can make the tines on even the best rototiller look like butter knives.  The only advice I can give you is get a shovel, mattock, and pry bar, and start digging… Remember to save the bricks for borders later!

The good news of the soil situation is, you can always build up. Raised beds with a barrier between the existing soil and the bottom of the bed are often the only choice. This will effectively stop the plant roots from accessing contaminated soils below, as well as keeping the edible leaves high enough off the ground to stop contaminated splash.

Soil should look, smell and feel alive, the living organisms are what work to eliminate contamination. The incorporation of organic material is often the starting point of remediation. If your soil is lifeless and dead, add organic material… It is the key ingredient to a healthy garden.

Organic material is available from all kinds of sources, I often just rake

plant petunias and question everything – chriscondello

This site… And all the photographs and information presented within are provided free of charge by the author… I am not affiliated with any product or business… Only myself… Writing this blog takes a ton of time… If you find any of this information helpful, please consider purchasing a print from my online store… It is obviously not a requirement… But it helps…

I sell prints of my photography here – http://www.society6.com/chriscondello Or you can contact me directly at c.condello@hotmail.com for commissions or locally/personally produced prints… Thank you for reading…

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

The Guerrilla Gardening Guidebook – Traffic

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“Aster on Mini Bus” – Whitney Avenue – Wilkinsburg, PA – Where on street parking is a thing, I recommend staying away from the hell strip… Damage to your garden is unavoidable… People are not always paying attention when they open their car door… Or they step out of the car right onto your garden… If you must plant a garden then I suggest creeping groundcovers…

Traffic

This post is part of a larger body of work titled ”The Guerrilla Gardening Guidebook”. For the introduction and table of contents please click here

Cars, trucks, motorcycles and bicycles will all have a major impact on the success or failure of a guerrilla garden placed within 10 feet of a street or sidewalk. Even tall curbs will not stop a careless delivery driver from backing 5 feet into an urban yard, and for some reason they always spin tire in the grass or garden that they have just reversed into… My theory as to why this happens is once a man has made a fool of himself, it is of the utmost importance that he drive that point home.

Trees and utility poles will often be your guide in determining traffic. The street I currently live on is a dead-end, no cul-de-sac and no place to turn around. To make things worse, GPS shows my street as a through way… Which it is most certainly not… All of the utility poles on my street bend away from the road, the street trees really show the signs of repeated abuse, leaning imposingly into the sidewalk making sidewalk passage all but impossible.

Bicycles and motorcycles can also be a problem. Motorcycles, in my neighborhood at least, are not typically parked on the street. Bicycles that are not brought indoors, are chained to a sign, utility pole, or street tree. The important thing to remember when dealing with these types of problems is most people are not aware that guerrilla gardening/urban gardening is even a thing. These are not situations to get upset over, don’t think along the lines of eliminating the problem… Think along the lines of accommodation… Oftentimes, the answer is as simple as facilitating the motorcycle with a pad… Or creating a space for the bicycles… Urban and guerrilla gardens require one to think outside the box in “every” aspect of creation and maintenance, the truly creative gardeners will be the ones who withstand the test of time.

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“Blue by the Red Bricks” – Whitney Avenue – Wilkinsburg, PA – Brick roads become slick in the rain… A moving car should always be considered a hazard… Always pay attention to your surroundings…

Speeding and out of control traffic can also be a safety concern for the guerrilla gardener. A moving car or truck is a deadly weapon that will kill you. When gardening in high traffic locations, I recommend wearing high visibility clothing, never turning your back to traffic, and always working with a spotter. Safety should always be factored when choosing guerrilla gardening sites, many of the unmaintained areas near roads are unmaintained for a reason… Safety… If it is too dangerous for the professionals, then it is probably to dangerous for the guerrilla gardener… That’s why we have “Seed Bombs”…

Even cars parked on the street can affect nearby gardens, plants typically get trampled when people carelessly exit their vehicles. The only plants that seem to succeed are the ones planted next to utility poles and signs. These plants will still suffer some abuse from people walking by, but they will be at least somewhat protected from direct traffic. The most frustrating thing I encounter is when someone walking down the sidewalk picks tulips or flowers along the street, I could understand one or two but some people will walk along kicking them or pulling them out of the ground by the stem… Very frustrating…

My hometown of Pittsburgh is known for having a lot of pot holes, so when I saw photos on the internet of someone in England gardening in them… I had to give it a try… My first attempt lasted only 15 seconds, it was run over faster than I could even get my camera out. I tried it again a few days later, but again I was thwarted. I quickly realized two things… America is probably not quite ready for pot hole gardening… And that 99% of the photos I saw of pot hole gardens probably were taken immediately after planting… The goal of my gardening campaign is longevity… I want them to look nice… And produce food for as long as possible…

To close this article I would like to stress that while gardening near a street can have some drawbacks, nothing looks nicer than a beautifully maintained hell strip or road berm… And what makes it even cooler is the fact that it was gardened in a renegade fashion without government money. Although some damage is to be expected, in my own experiences, once a garden has matured and the plants reached a decent size the likelihood of something getting trampled decreases greatly. If you can get your garden through the first month, typically it will row large enough to force people to park somewhere else… Or at least far enough away from the curb to easily exit their vehicle without damaging themselves or their car.

BrandonPhotoBomb

“Garden Photo Bomb” – The Garden Table Urban Garden – Rebecca Avenue – Wilkinsburg, PA – A full lot urban garden built two years ago… I have done everything but put up a fence in an attempt to keep thieves out… Sadly… A fence is next…

First time guerrilla gardeners, often make the mistake of putting the entire garden out there for people to see. This is a rookie mistake that often goes punished by the theft, or vandalism of the garden. I learned early on that a “cut” through the middle of a garden does nothing but invite trouble. Every situation will be different, but a few simple guidelines and lessons learned may be able to help you in your final choice.

Vacant lots in urban areas quickly become short cuts, foot traffic will present as a trail through the grass and weeds. Initial attempts to remediate this situation, by whatever means, is almost always met with hostility. Locals who have often been using the “cut” as a regular means of travel are often quick to remove whatever blockade has been installed. The usual response I have received is that it has been a cut for a long time, and I have no right to block it. This is typically a tricky situation, my advise is to attempt to claim ownership, without actually claiming anything. No Trespassing signs can be surprisingly effective when placed in a very noticeable place, you may have to enforce it a few times but it will eventually get your point across. As a last resort you can always accommodate by re-routing the cut through an outside path, foot traffic is never a good thing when vegetables are concerned.

Gardens placed near roads and sidewalks, though cool, rarely last longer than a few years unless placed in a more aware location. Hell strip gardening, although trendy enough to warrant a book, is really just a dream in a neighborhood with on-street parking. Flowering plants growing in the cracks of the sidewalk will oftentimes be targeted, very low ground covers and plants that can tolerate regular foot traffic are all that will typically survive. I have found that if there is enough foot traffic to wear a path in the grass and weeds of an unmaintained lot, then the surrounding sidewalks will probably not be suitable for plants of any kind. Beware of social media photographs showing street side and hell strip gardens, most of those photos were taken on the day of, or within the first year of planting… They never show any 2nd or 3rd year pictures – which is one way to spot a trend…

A trick I often employ is to raise street side gardens well above the height of the street or sidewalk. A few flowers growing in the sunken dirt next to a sidewalk often give the impression to the untrained eye as simply being a weed. Even more confusing can be a native/wildflower garden growing… Well… Anywhere… Even borough employees don’t know what an engineered wildflower gardens look like and will quickly weed whack that garden to the ground. A garden should look like a garden, it should look like a spot a person would not want to step. Add soil to raise the level of the garden a few inches off the sidewalk, plant and mulch so the garden is imposing enough to require people to walk around it…

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“Danger Rose” – Lamar Avenue – Wilkinsburg, PA – Invasive Rose-of-Sharon growing in the yard of a crumbling building… Sometimes… The best option is to just prune and care for what is already growing… I promise when this house comes down you will not want to be keeping a garden next door…

Some foot traffic problems will only show up every once in a while. You may not have a problem all Summer, then a church opens a Summer camp for two weeks and the added traffic of children will be the nail in the coffin. My first guerrilla garden was having issues early Sunday mornings. Something, or someone was coming through and picking vegetables and throwing them at the abandoned houses behind the garden. It turned out to be a family walking to church, the parents didn’t even attempt to stop their kids. So I woke up really early one Sunday morning and positioned myself strategically in the tomato plants. An hour later I had caught them red-handed, even the parents were participating. I calmly explained myself, and asked them to quit. I did not stop them from walking through the garden, I just simply explained my intentions. We still say hello to each other to this day!

When traffic is unavoidable, but you absolutely must stop it, planting a tree or quick-growing shrub may be your only option. The idea here is to plant something opposable enough to force someone around it. Conifers often shine in this situation, with many varieties being rather quick growers with the added benefit of being covered in a dense layer of needles. “Knockout” and “Double-Knockout” Roses also make excellent barriers tolerant of even the most extreme of parking lot gardens. They tolerate regular pruning, whether by the gardener or passerby. Profusely bloom throughout the gardening season, and grow large enough to effectively block a humans path.

Pedestrian traffic is often unavoidable, but I promise you traffic directly through a garden causes problems. The best advice I can give you is to re-route the traffic elsewhere… A ripe tomato hanging in plain view is a rather tempting sight, it is only a matter of “times passed” before someone decides to steal it. My advice is to avoid the situation altogether and force them to admire from the sidewalk.

plant petunias and question everything – chriscondello

plant petunias and question everything – chriscondello

This site… And all the photographs and information presented within are provided free of charge by the author… I am not affiliated with any product or business… Only myself… Writing this blog takes a ton of time… If you find any of this information helpful, please consider purchasing a print from my online store… It is obviously not a requirement… But it helps…

I sell prints of my photography here – http://www.society6.com/chriscondello Or you can contact me directly at c.condello@hotmail.com for commissions or locally/personally produced prints… Thank you for reading…

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

The Guerrilla Gardening Guidebook – Site Selection

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“Comfrey Flower on Blight” – Whitney Avenue – Wilkinsburg, PA – I have removed enough Comfrey to know better than to plant it in my own yard… So I grow it in front of abandoned houses and just cut what I need…

Site Selection

This post is part of a larger body of work titled ”The Guerrilla Gardening Guidebook”. For the introduction and table of contents please click here

Site selection is typically the easiest part of the whole process, in my experience, the site chooses me. My efforts are a direct protest to abandoned homes and lots sprinkled around my neighborhood, for this reason I tend to already have a good idea what my next target will be well in advance of actually beginning any work. Though the locations may be different, they all require the same few things – Water, soil, sunlight and access… Though access can often be worked around with a little ingenuity and a few seed bombs.

The very first thing you need to do is determine whether you intend to plant ornamental flowers, or vegetables for consumption. Ornamental gardens are meant to be seen, they are typically placed in public places where they can be enjoyed by the masses. Food crops on the other hand may be best suited away from the publics eye. This is not always the case of course… But if your garden is not directly visible from your house, it is typically the best practice.

Ornamental guerrilla gardens are often created as a civil means of protest against blighted land, for this reason they are typically planted in high visibility areas. Sometimes the point of the garden is simply to inspire other people to consider gardening in places that one would not normally consider, abandoned houses, street berms, hell strips, vacant lots, even potholes can be gardened. In my mind, simply mowing the lawn of land that you do not own is considered guerrilla gardening.

Food gardens tend to invite more trouble than their counterparts, for this reason alone I feel they should be relatively difficult to see from the road. Now I’m not saying you should build a ten foot privacy fence, I am saying you should plant anything that can become a projectile away from the street. Tomatoes can become a big problem if the kids decide to throw them at cars, a single Sungold tomato plant produces so much fruit that the kids will be entertained for hours… And not in a good way.

I typically prefer to develop entire lots when it comes to food, who wants to grow just a few tomato plants when you can grow one hundred! I like to fill the first twenty feet of the lot with tall ornamental plants, this is an attempt to shield the food from people passing by. Not every community is like mine, some are much more receptive to street side gardening. The temperament of the kids can vary from street to street, and every location will have its own issues. If you are new to a neighborhood, a quick conversation with your neighbors can often give some clues as to how receptive a neighborhood may be.

WAUFandMe

“Salvaged Grape Arbor” – Whitney Avenue Urban Farm – Whitney Avenue – Wilkinsburg, PA – The posts were very old grape vines that we cut out of the trees… The ladders were pulled from the trash… The crazy piece of wood I found on a job… Niagara Seedless and Concord Grapes…

Guerrilla food gardens are often created not with the intention of just feeding oneself, but sometimes to supplement the nutritional needs of an entire neighborhood. In this case, planting your crops in plain view can often be the best practice. Simply sharing your garden with all the inhabitants on the street increases the amount of eyes that will be watching the garden. You would be surprised how effective having a few older residents on your side can be, there is nothing scarier than a pissed off old lady moving full speed towards you. Security often costs just a few tomatoes or a bundle of greens, it can’t get any better than that.

Chances are pretty good that if you are reading this post, then you already have a site in mind. Long term guerrilla efforts require ease of access, gardens placed out-of-the-way tend to suffer. Food gardens require a lot more maintenance that flowers, for this reason a food garden will get much more attention if you regularly pass it and should therefore be planted as close to home as possible. Ornamental gardens on the other hand can go weeks without human intervention, for this reason they can often be maintained from a much further distance.

Some cities have organized groups that go out and garden, these can be great places to meet like-minded people. Other cities may have a few individuals fighting their own campaigns, slowly greening an urban lot at a time… I fall in to the second group… My efforts are typically solo, or with the help of a neighborhood kid or two. For that reason I choose my sites within a few block radius.

Street sides and public places add a level of excitement to the mix, nothing gets the heart pumping like the threat of a trespassing and vandalism charge. Choose a site with easy access, a carefully parked car can offer some protection from prying eyes and out of control vehicles. Make a plan before you get the shovels out, the last thing you want to do is stand there shuffling plants around. Sometimes, design gets thrown out the window in preference of speed, for this reason it is worth making a game plan before you get to your location. A guerrilla gardener should not be noticed by people, a guerrilla garden campaign lasts longest when the gardener is invisible.

To wrap this post up… Probably the single greatest variable will be the gardens neighbors… Sometimes they will be receptive, often they will not. You would be surprised how many urbanites like having an overgrown vacant lot next door, for many of them this is as close to living near nature as they can get. Be patient when dealing with these types of people, remember that although you think you are doing something good for your community, not everyone is going to see it that way.

plant petunias and question everything – chriscondello

This site… And all the photographs and information presented within are provided free of charge by the author… I am not affiliated with any product or business… Only myself… Writing this blog takes a ton of time… If you find any of this information helpful, please consider purchasing a print from my online store… It is obviously not a requirement… But it helps…

I sell prints of my photography here- http://www.society6.com/chriscondello Or you can contact me directly at c.condello@hotmail.com for commissions or locally/personally produced prints… Thank you for reading…

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

The Guerrilla Gardening Guidebook – Definition and Introduction

TheForgottenFS

“The Forgotten Farm Stand” – Summer 2011 – Whitney Avenue – Wilkinsburg, PA – The forgotten farm stand was a guerrilla farm stand used by the neighborhood kids to sell the produce grown on our guerrilla farm.

Definition and Introduction

This post is part of a larger body of work titled “The Guerrilla Gardeners Guidebook”. For the introduction and table of contents please click here

Urban Gardening – is the cultivation of land, primarily located within the confines of the city. Urban gardening presents challenges not commonly found in the suburbs and rural areas found around a metropolitan area. Urban gardening has many sub categories ranging from food to forest, personal needs typically being the deciding factor.

Guerrilla Gardening – In my own words… Is the cultivation and remediation of blighted land that the gardener does not own… Manifestos differs from garden to garden, but the common denominator is always vacant, bare or blighted land. This land can be anything from a small street side “hell strip” (the grass between the road and sidewalk in urban areas), all the way up to massive “brown sites” (tracts of land that at one time were zoned industrial). Often an abandoned site or area that is neglected or polluted by the land owner. Guerrilla gardeners often do not even have the opportunity to ask the land owners permission as they are often deceased, illegitimate, or buried behind a corporate wall.

PeaceG

“The Peace Garden” – Center Street – Wilkinsburg, PA – Now defunct… But the property is in a state of rehabilitation by the new homeowner… This guerrilla garden was built by myself and the neighborhood as a result of a murder that happened on this corner…

Now a little about me…

In the case of my neighborhood, a small dead-end street located in Wilkinsburg, PA. Out of the original 24 houses, 10 are abandoned, 2 have been torn down, and the rest are currently occupied. When my girlfriend and I moved onto Whitney Avenue 5 years ago we were greeted by a community art project coordinated by a local artist, the goal of which was to involve community members in the painting of ply wood to be hung on the abandoned houses on our street. This art project was called the Whitney Avenue Art Gallery and was a complete success.

While the community was preparing the panels for installation, I was left wondering how the art would be seen given the jungle-like characteristics of my street. Nine out of the ten abandoned houses are located on one side of the street, the result of this was uncontrollable blight that combined to resemble an Amazonian jungle. Over the Summer of the art project, myself and a few neighbors managed to landscape every abandoned yard on the street. After this monumental task was complete, garden beds were cut and plant life installed… The only maintenance required is the occasional lawn mowing and minor weed pulling.

One of the interesting results noted from this project was the fact that some of the worst looking yards on our street were owned and lived in by people. These were typically the people who were throwing a stink when we first started our efforts. Once the abandoned yards surrounding their own yards were cleaned up and looking like something out of better homes and gardens, they began to take interest and ask questions.

This was one of my first permaculture epiphanies... Notice the greens are sprouting faster the closer to the bricks you get...

“Whitney Avenue Urban Farm” – Whitney Avenue – Wilkinsburg, PA – My first guerrilla farm… Consisting of two side by side lots on my block… Now gone…

The end result of the guerrilla gardening that took place on my street was the residents taking an interest, and not only asking us to help them clean up their own property, but get competitive with the other neighbors over whose yard was going to look best. To this day these houses have spring flowering bulbs, summer moon flowers, Canna Lily, roses, and in some cases small amounts of food and herbs.

Whitney Avenue Urban Farm was my first experiment into urban farming. Originally intended to be a small guerrilla garden for my girlfriend and I, the project blossomed when four neighborhood boys began to show interest. What was intended to be a few tomato plants turned into a multiple lot farm complete with grapes, blueberries, strawberries, figs and so many vegetables we actually had to open up a small farm stand so the boys could earn a few dollars from all of their hard labor… Which they did…

Whitney Avenue Urban Farm lasted for 3 Summers, during which time we introduced children that had no prior knowledge of the fact that you could grow your own food to the joys of gardening. Given the fact that this small farm was essentially a guerrilla garden, it eventually had to be closed when the house beside it was sold and the new owner had plans of their own.

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“.25 Auto” – Sewer Way – Wilkinsburg, PA – A reminder of why I am a guerrilla garden… I may not be able to physically stop the violence… I may not have enough money to fix all of the houses… But I have the knowledge and skills to green the hell out of the neighborhood… So that is what I will do…

Since losing this farm I have developed another lot into what most people describe as an urban paradise. Multiple raised beds full of food sandwiched between a mulched seating area surrounded in shade perennials, and a stunning annual garden… I even designed and built a grape arbor entryway out of salvaged wooden ladders.

Currently I am sourcing materials for what will be my third urban farm. Located a block down the street from my current site, this farm will be aimed towards production as opposed to beauty… The new site will be loosely “food forest” based, and will hopefully have chickens and bees.

Urban gardening, whether food or flowers, is essentially meant to inspire. A garden should draw the eyes away from our tedious day-to-day routines. In the case of urban gardens, they attract the eye towards vacant space or blight with the intention of bringing beauty to it. Any city that has a homeless or poor population should be absolutely ashamed of every abandoned home and vacant lot, they are a direct spit in the face of the residents. Guerrilla gardeners help bring awareness to these forgotten parcels of land, often creating a fresh food source where there was not one before. Regardless of the intent, guerrilla garden activism is here to stay as long as there is vacant, unattended land coupled with hunger and blight.

plant petunias and question everything – chriscondello

This site… And all the photographs and information presented within are provided free of charge by the author… I am not affiliated with any product or business… Only myself… Writing this blog takes a ton of time… If you find any of this information helpful, please consider purchasing a print from my online store… It is obviously not a requirement… But it helps…

I sell prints of my photography here – http://www.society6.com/chriscondello Or you can contact me directly at c.condello@hotmail.com for commissions or locally/personally produced prints… Thank you for reading…

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

The First Rays of Sunlight

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“Sun Ray” – © chriscondello 2013 – Frick Park – Pittsburgh, PA

Prints available here – http://society6.com/chriscondello/Sun-Ray-fCJ_Print

I took a walk to Frick Park as the sun was rising… On my journey I spent a few moments watching the sun rise over an old church that was covered in pigeons… I found myself questioning whether God would consider the exorbitant amount of money spent on our places of worship money well spent… Probably not…

When I arrived to my destination the sun had yet to break the trees… As always… I sat for a while and scanned the area for stones… Having been to this spot before… I actually knew exactly where the sun would rise… I carefully chose my starter rock to be situated in front of the sun… Watching the beams of sunlight fall from the sky as the sun rose… Finally landing in all the right spots…

This photo is the result…

plant petunias and question everything – chriscondello

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.