I came up with the perfect “title”— Free Range Gardening
Sara Thompson
21

“Free Range Gardening.” I like it; it’s a definite potential jumping-off point for more thought, for sure.

Some thoughts:

I know my co-editor Tim considers himself more of an “alternative agriculturalist” than a gardener per se. Also

That said, it’s an interesting idea, that you can actively help the health of plants that are growing in uncultivated areas. Like, if you have a regular “foraging” spot, you can help the “uncultivated” plants in that spot. I’ve personally removed choking bedstraw and young blackberry vines from a stand of nettles, to which I returned later for nettley goodness.

How far could you extend this idea? It’s long been suggested in fairly mainstream anthropological/ethnobotanical circles that the Amazon rainforest was, at one time, a series of enormous forest gardens:

I still think it’s coming back to this idea of blurring the lines between “wild” and “urban,” and considering the whole shebang a spectrum or process instead of two separate realms. Allow “weeds” in the garden, prune diseased leaves off of your favorite “wild” elderberry bush.

There’s definitely something “there,” there.

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