Episode 146 – Lessons in Resistance: Building Communities

by | Sep 19, 2010 | Episodes, Podcasts | 6 comments

Running Time: 1:00:00

Description:People are isolated from each other, public spaces are being privatized, and we are being punished for attempting to grow our own food. There is only one solution: resistance. Join us this week as we explore how to build communities through revolutionary gardening, revolutionary walking and other everyday activities.


Documentation – Cabbagegate
Time Reference: 17:49
Description: The New World Next Week covers the story of a Georgia man who is being sued for growing fruits and vegetables on his own property.
Link To: YouTube.com
Documentation – MediaMonarchy post on cabbagegate
Time Reference: 17:50
Description: More information about the case.
Link To: FoodWorldOrder.com
Documentation – Swat Team Raids an Organic Ohio Co-op
Time Reference: 22:21
Description: A 2008 article that was unfortunately only a herald of things to come.
Link To: OpEdNews.com
Documentation – Green Thumbs Down: Community Gardeners Concerned About Proposed City Rules
Time Reference: 22:42
Description: Community gardeners are concerned about proposed new rules that would further regulate 300 gardens overseen by New York City.
Link To: beta.wnyc.org
Documentation – Pittsburgh wants to regulate community gardens
Time Reference: 23:00
Description: Pittsburgh city council have decided that one way to make up for their fiscal irresponsibility is to charge a fee and regulate honeybees, chickens and community gardens.
Link To: Constitution Party of Allegheny County
Documentation – City Hall Continues to Bury Community Gardens Under Permits and Procedures
Time Reference: 23:04
Description: First the city needs a letter from the owner of a property that says, yes, it’s fine for someone to garden on his or her land. Then the city wants a site plan from the operator of said garden. Then the city wants a list of names and addresses of all
Link To: Dallas Observer
Documentation – Mariana Griggs Ain’t OK W/ City Option 4 Community Gardens
Time Reference: 23:19
Description: This recommended option will change the way we have created community gardens so far. First, there will be lots of meetings, with neighbors and interested parties (you know no one will be able to meet at the same time). Then there will be required si
Link To: Oak Cliff People
Documentation – EPA to regulate farm dust
Time Reference: 24:58
Description: You can’t make this stuff up.
Link To: FoodWorldOrder.com
Documentation – Arizona Man Fights to Keep Gadsden Flag Flying Outside His Home
Time Reference: 25:15
Description: That’s right, housing associations can tell you which military flags are acceptable to fly on your home and which are not.
Link To: Infowars.com
Documentation – Urban Garden Magazine
Time Reference: 28:00
Description: Home page of Urban Garden Magazine.
Link To: UrbanGardenMagazine
Documentation – Urban Garden Magazine cover
Time Reference: 28:40
Description: High quality sample cover of Urban Garden Magazine
Link To: The Corbett Report
Documentation – Urban Garden Magazine cover
Time Reference: 28:41
Description: A lower quality file of a sample cover of Urban Garden Magazine.
Link To: The Corbett Report
Documentation – DouglasLain.net
Time Reference: 39:32
Description: Home page of Douglas Lain.
Link To: DouglasLain.net
Documentation – Diet Soap podcast
Time Reference: 39:35
Description: Weekly podcast by Douglas Lain.
Link To: Podomatic
Documentation – Free Zone with Freeman – September 11, 2010
Time Reference: 50:39
Description: Contains some very profound words about the value of valuing our community and growing our own food.
Link To: Oracle Broadcasting
Documentation – Freeman TV
Time Reference: 51:06
Description: Home page of Freeman Fly.
Link To: FreemanTV.com


  1. As with successful businesses, along comes the big dog and takes over, or buys it out, or kills the owner and takes over, As Ahab and his wife Jezebel did to Naboth, for love of his nice little ancestral vineyard, in 1 Kings 21.

  2. Having your own food is beginning of independence. To many people this days don’t even know how vegetables grown in soil without chemical fertilizers tastes. What you eat is what you are.
    Therefore artificial crap like hydroponics cannot provide highly valuable natural food. Real food comes from dirt that is living organism, not just substrate with proper chemical ingredients, but an ecosystem with bacteria and fungi.

    If one decides to have an urban garden I would recommend to invest a bit more that would at the end provide more with less work. System of connected self-irrigated containers is excellent solution.

    Guide to Setting Up
    Your Own Edible Rooftop Garden
    page 52

    Containers should be as big as possible (my are 60*90*60cm) because majority of plants don’t like big day-night temperature fluctuations around roots.

    • @mik

      You make some valid points. There is no way to artificially simulate the myriad symbiotic relationships that occur in the rhizosphere of a plant in living soil (that are required for food and medicine crops to achieve their true potential as far as the nutrients, medicinal compounds and flavors they provide). That being said, there are ways that one can incorporate some of the beneficial organisms (which exist in living soil) into hydroponic systems (such as by using EM1 or by using actively aerated compost tea) which can enable small scale hydroponic growing systems to at least produce mediocre quality produce (without using synthetic inputs).

      That is however, not to say I am a proponent of hydroponic cultivation for urban food production systems, as I have found through my own experimentation and research that there are viable alternatives to grow nutrient dense food (regardless of one’s living situation) using more low tech methods. I acknowledge that hydroponics may be helpful for supplementing food cultivation in some situations (but I do not think it is the only option for most, nor is it the best option for anyone).

      Grow lights on the other hand (being used in the context of being the main source of light for mature plants intended to produce food) is something that I suggest avoiding all together (if possible). There is no way that we can effectively simulate the multi-layered energy forms that plants absorb in natural light conditions via artificial lights. Grow lights result in nutritionally inferior crops when compared to those grown in natural light. Perhaps someone living in the arctic circle has no other option for growing their leafy greens but in any other situation I would say go for natural light.

      Another downside of hydroponics and grow lights is how ugly and destructive their industrial scale application is. I will share a comment below that shows what that industry has done to the land where we live for some context.

      Thanks again for the comment.

  3. For beginner gardeners with a very small amount of space, I recommend:

    One Magic Square – Grow your own food on one square metre by Lolo Holbein

    Holbein survived the famine in post-WW II Netherlands. Her motivation for writing the book was her concerns about food security. The book is filled with practical advice on plot planning, composting, and how to grow plants in temperate climates. All on a one meter plot.

    For people interested something bigger for their community or market gardening purposes. This couple produce 8000kg of organically grown produce off a 1/4 acre plot of land in one growing season (New Zealand temperate climate) – off-grid!

  4. Thanks for linking this great episode in one of your recent pieces James! πŸ™‚

    The municipal garden gestapo like to rain on people’s food sovereignty parades here in southern Ontario now as well. They will fine you for having a food garden in the front yard, and if you do not endlessly cut your mandated monoculture of grass (and it gets to long) the municipality shows up, cuts it and then fines you for having too long of grass.

    They even made it illegal to feed the birds in one’s own yard now here, sometimes the local officials vaguely raise the specter of spreading ‘bird flu’ or they say that bird feeders are ‘messy’ as the reasons why they have municipal officers roaming around snatching people’s bird feeders from their private property.

    Despite all this insanity, we do find ways to still feed the birds as well as grow food and medicine in our front yard.

    As I was saying to someone in the December Open Thread (2022) we like to put beautiful plants like Amaranth in our front yard as an edible crop disguised as an ornamental. Given we have neighbors and municipal rules that frown on having food gardens in the front yard, we grow brightly colored food and medicine plants in our front yard to confuse the garden gestapo and appease close-minded neighbors ?

  5. With regards to endorsing hydroponic cultivation, I would like to present a cautionary tale.

    While I know this episode was talking about hydroponics in the specific context of small scale residential setups, once the technology becomes normalized, seen as profitable, embraced by corporations and industrialized, this can happen: https://archive.org/details/263651027-1022933871888354-1580058608248963347-n/263026100_1022934281888313_1570453762928383512_n.jpg


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