Sow Many Weeds!


Mason Lam

LARC 503

In 1792, in the place now known as Victoria, BC, Captain George Vancouver looked upon the complex socio-ecological agricultural system of the Lekwungen Nation and decided to seize it, turn it into an asset, and privatize it. Over two centuries later, overseen by his statue at Vancouver City Hall, the City Hall Community Garden continues to enforce his colonial framework through a bureaucratic system that only benefits a privileged few. Instead of growing fruits, vegetables, and flowers, assets which urban farmers become attached to and defend, the proposed community garden will grow the humblest of all plants, weeds. Circular arrays of crevice planters will be created with slate flagstones, which will be graffitied upon and constructed by the community, serving as an inclusive archive of collective memory. This proposal aims to spur little acts of disobedience; by growing weeds and encouraging graffiti, the garden is no longer an asset in the eyes of the market, allowing people to connect with plants through gardening instead of policing their neighbours. Before the very eyes of the statue of George Vancouver, Sow Many Weeds! will besmirch his view and work to disrupt his colonial framework, democratising the community garden.