Viva La Resistance!

No, this isn’t the same citrus tree that I planted and posted about a couple of weeks  ago. Although I do look very fondly upon that citrus tree, and check upon it morning  and night, I wouldn’t bother you again with more details were it not for the fact that  another tree has mysteriously appeared, this time on my neighbour’s nature strip. It  looks quite fine, I must say.

Whoever could have put it there?

The original citrus tree – a mandarin – came up in conversation with my neighbour as we exchanged  garden chat and some coriander over the fence last weekend. He mentioned that he  liked my Guerilla tactics, so, in a whisper, I promptly offered to repeat the  performance on his nature strip. After looking over his shoulder, he whispered that he  was only too happy for me to do so. The conspiracy to relocalize was complete.

Not wanting to delay so important an event, I got to work immediately, before he could even say, “I’d like a sweet navel orange tree, please.” Fortunately, that is what I planted. Doesn’t it look good?

There is an important message here, I feel, about the ability of our peaceful acts of opposition, even the smallest acts, to resonate beyond our original intentions or expectations, like ripples in a cultural pond. This is motivating, as well as being a good reminder of the often subtle mechanisms of cultural change. Don’t get overwhelmed by the enormity of our challenges. Think global, but act local. After all, the examples of Guerrilla Gardening on my street doubled in the weekend, and that’s the only exponential growth we should be interested in these days. Watch this space, or similar spaces. Better still, get digging!

In the photo below you will see the two trees, co-existing proudly, side-by-side, as if comrades in the Deep Green Revolution. When the nature strips are full, we can always start working on the driveways.

Viva la Resistance!

4 Responses to “Viva La Resistance!”

  1. Tom says:

    Sentries at the gateway to a new world!

    Nice work.

  2. Borut says:

    I really like the idea of guerilla planting. About two years ago a few of my friends actually tried to organize quite a big planting operation, but it became too complicated unfortunatelly.

    But there were a few good ideas that are worth sharing.

    We thought about choosing only vegetables. Mostly tomatoes really, a salad here and there, a few beans… But the point was to actually put a sign next to each one wich would live to be a certaing height… Explaining passers by what this tomatoe plant is doing on their way to work, and ask them only not to pick it before it’s fully ripe.

    Oh our point was of course: people are hungry and plants don’t grow in supermarkets…

  3. Tess says:

    How did you choose the type of tree? I also want to sneak a fruit tree somewhere so am wondering if a mandarin tree is a good choice for Melbourne?

  4. Samuel Alexander says:

    Hi Tess, good question. There’s no point guerilla gardening if nothing grows! There is a thriving mandarin in one of my neighbour’s yards, so I figured that that was good enough evidence that they would grow in Melbourne. I also chose a citrus for two other reasons. First, because they stay green all year round, and I thought that this was an aesthetic bonus. Second, and perhaps more importantly, citrus don’t get attacked by birds / bats like other fruit trees do. This means that you don’t need to net them. If you do plant a citrus, do what you can to dig out a decent area to plant the tree in, as they don’t much like having their roots interfered with by anything.

    So, I’d recommend a citrus of some variety – mandarin, orange, lemon, lime, etc. That said, there is already a mature plum tree and a mature apple tree on my street, and while they do get attacked by birds / bats, there always seems to be enough left over us for us humans. Who knows, perhaps the birds and bats are trying to teach us all something about how to share nature.

    You might also like to consider dwarf varieties. I’ve got a dwarf nectarine, dwarf pear, dwarf apple, and dwarf peach. They’re beautiful little things, and don’t require the space full sized trees need.

  5. […] reported on my previous operations here and here. Since then, things have gotten […]

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