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Back to St George’s for a little leaf and litter harvest and tulip planting.  Andrew (1679) decided not to spend his birthday at a George Michael concert in Oslo and join us instead, and Rivanna (1708), a Toronton came all the way from Finchley.  The three of us were interupted by a middle aged man in a dark suit who ask “take me to your leader!”  Fearing a security incursion I cautiously took responsibility, and admitted I was that man. His response was a cash donation given in memory of his wife Deborah (who donated to us back in March).

Project Five: St George’s Circus, Southwark, London. Guerrilla Gardening: Thursday19 October
Whilst you may think of guerrilla gardening action as a careful military operation, do not forget that a guerrilla must be alert at any time whenever the opportunity to cultivate occurs.  Tonight was one such occasion.  On an evening visit to the V&A museum with Kate (2224) the chance came up to check on Project Thirteen.  A quick prune, removal of the summer’s sorry salvia and general tidy up was no trouble with a pair of pocket secateurs.Project Thirteen: Brompton Road, London. Guerrilla Gardening: Wednesday 18 October
Newspaper coverage from the UK and Germany.  To download PDFs click on the covers.
Gardens IllustratedDirektThe Times Kate MuirTNTSaturday Telegraph
With most of the plants still to arrive Ella (1305), Aimee (1306), Veronika (1437), Naomi (272) and I went about pruning the old buddleia and catoniasta, scattering bone meal and raking in compost.  This huge bed is primed for planting now, just check the London Community board to find out when.  A pause for pizza, biscuits and dips was also a chance to get to know the local night life.  Local lads on their bicycles helped keep watch of my car as police action hotted up, one armoured van swinging a squealing U-turn metres from our action, but with other business.
Project Sixteen: Amhurst Road, Hackney Guerrilla Gardening: Tuesday 17 October
We learnt a lot about root structure this evening, about how incredibly deep old brambles go down, and about how the white spindly threads of bind weed get everywhere.  We also learnt that the more often you dig some orphaned land the more local people show up and do a bit of parenting.  Rob (783) appeared for a break from renovating his flat to bring us a tray of hot tea and someone else pressed £20 in our hands with thanks.Project Sixteen: Amhurst Road, Hackney
Guerrilla Gardening: Sunday 15 October
Back for another sortie to nip the pesky weeds before they sap the soul out of our lavender field.  An evening on these beds is like treading the boards, as crowds of passers by and traffic at the lights take an interest and call out rallying cries.  It seems there is a growing familiarity with this flagship project and our work in London. Tonight we dropped in about 200 red tulip bulbs amongst the lavender and also recruited a couple of new residents.
Project Nine & Ten: Westminster Bridge Rd
Guerrilla Gardening: Thursday 12 October, Meike Suggars the guerrilla gardener.
Naomi (272), Stuart (273), Lita (610) and a passer by called Alexander (2237) returned to this huge patch for another weeding session.  Carpets, which had been salvaged from a bin a few weeks ago, had done a good job of supressing weed growth and the soil is turning out to be brilliant, full of happy worms.  In went a few tangerine sage plants but the big planting has yet to begin, this is no over night transformation.  Naomi’s orange juice was enjoyed by all of us, including the local wildlife.Project Sixteen: Amhurst Road, Hackney, London. Guerrilla Gardening: Tuesday 10 October.
In Switzerland for the weekend, I was surprised by the extent of shaggy wild messy roadside verges, in a city that has plenty of parks, and riverside wildlife. So after dinner, with a glass of Pinot Grigio as fuel, Alice (122) and I stepped outside to the nearby bus stop and planted twenty yellow tulip bulbs, demonstrating that guerrilla gardening really can be as simple as preparing a pudding or putting out the trash, brightening up life beyond your doorstep.Project Fourteen: Kornhausstrasse, Zürich, Switzerland. Guerrilla Gardening: Sunday 8 October. Budget: CHF12 for 20 yellow tulip bulbs.
We first dug here back on 11 May with
our first “low maintenance” desert garden of gravel and grasses.  Locals on the night took an interest and it seems to have worked.  Just light weeding and a top up of gravel was needed... but it is a bit dull, hardly green and pleasant.  So I added a few shrubs, a strange curly leaved Buddleia, and three Deutzia (Hydrangeaceae), kindly donated by Gary
Guerrilla Gardening poster in a phone boxLow maintenance desert garden in Vicarage Lane, Stratford, London
and Rachel of Cotswold Garden Flowers
Once again, given local support is patchy
here, I set about recruiting by persuading the local corner shop to take an ad in their window, posting flyers under doors and making use of the phone box.  You see a guerrilla fights not only with steel and vegetation, but with propaganda too. I was joined by journalists from the local paper and Adbusters magazine.Under the doorIn the shop window
Guerrilla gardening was invented by a Brit called Gerald in 1649 but the term was coined by a New Yorker called Liz in 1973. I visited the modern day birth place of guerrilla gardening to meet some of the original Green Guerrillas, Donald and Adam, and see how their intial forays have become established and beautiful community gardens in pockets of Manhattan.  New York is an inspiration. In Manhattan block after block takes pride in their sidewalk gardens and green space is passionately protected from development. Rob and I filmed hours of interviews and enlisted James, a British journalist and Bed-Sty resident, to join us investigating East New York community gardens. We found Johanna in her impressive herbal garden, some young gardeners keen to pose for us outside their patch and a lot of sorry orphaned land in need of seed bombing.Bria, Dorothy and Daquan Guerrilla Gardeners
Donald outside the Liz Christy gardenCommunity Gardeners of New York
Johanna in her Herbal Garden East New YorkAdam in the Clinton Community Garden New York

The drizzle did not stop a force of about eight of us, many enthusiastic new comers, for an evening of forking out a mat of fresh weeds that had sprung up since the lavender harvest last month.  Three hours later, with us caked in mud, most of it was cleared, red tulips planted, and the car loaded with sacks of weeds and mud for Battersea tip.  As we packed up the heavens opened drenching the last of us with a cleansing shower. Refuge was sought in warm red double decker buses.Weeds before and happy lavender bushes afterwards outside Morley College in Lambeth
Guerrilla gardeners gather at One Tree Hill Honor Oak for the first picnic
An old favourite, but tatty after the long
summer and lavender harvesting we met once more at around 9pm in the heart of Southwark, London.  We (that is about 10 of us, many curious and new to the horticultural front line), returned to expand the flanks of this delicate bed with some long term planting.  Whilst tulips were dug as floral land mines into the central zone we put new shrubs in a symetrical pincer movement on either side.  Some will grow into big beasts but in the meantime bright, seasonal Michaelmas daises provide instant colour in the space left in between them.Guerrilla Gardeners return to St George's Circus, Southwark to plant Pittisporum, Phormium, Aster, Rhododendron, Calluna and Tulips.
Guerrilla Gardening begins at about 9pm and ends just before 11, by which time both flanks of this arc shaped plot are transformed
Unlike other locations this one started out 
with lots of plants, just over grown litter traps a rampantly green, virtually flowerless back drop to a row of busy bus stops.  Gradually I am adding plants to it, and this evening cut things back with some guerrilla topiary, filling a sack with cuttings for civic composting.
The local newspapers in Plymouth got
wind of our July dig and sent a photographer around to meet my mother Janet (008).  Happy to oblige 
and seed the word of guerrilla action she posed with a fork and ended up in three newspapers.  This has rallied new support
and led to peculiar incidents in Co-Op when she’s been stopped by strangers and thanked for her gardening.  Click the articles to read them.
Click here to read the newspaper as a PDF fileClick here to read the newspaper as a PDF file
Guerrilla Gardening Harvesting lavender at Westminster Bridge Road.  Click here for more photos from Jono Warren

For blogs earlier in the year clickFor blogs earlier in the year click here