Image shows a collection of farm tools held inside a disused water butt. To the left is a small window shutter on the side of a pale blue wall.

Cultivating the garden of your mind

In this episode of the For the Wild podcast titled ‘Cultivating the Garden of Your Mind’, Ron Finley discusses how gardening in urban spaces can subvert land and food injustices caused by oppressive land use laws. He explains how these laws prohibit food growing in towns and cities across the US and how this dictates human-nature relations.

Ron Finley questions dominant value systems in society by discussing his experiences of being criminalised for planting vegetables on a street pavement in Los Angeles. His experiences of enclosure are a stark testament to the need to rework urban land use laws which hinder food commoning. This, he argues, can help address food deserts whereby uneven access to nutritious food is commonly shaped by racial injustice.

By highlighting the entanglement between urban food growing and oppressive state structures, this podcast makes us think about enclosure and how it relates to struggles for urban land liberation and anti-racist mutual aid.

Finley believes in the possibilities of collective growing with neighbours, growing community and subverting the design of cities to cultivate human and more-than-human connection.


“We all are designers and we are capable of designing the life we wanna live and not the one that’s been designed for us… you don’t have to grow all the food that you’re going to eat, you can do it collectively. That is altering the system.”

Ron Finley – Episode 79 of For the Wild podcast

Ron Finley is a horticultural revolutionary; an artist and designer and food grower based in Los Angeles, US. He currently runs the Ron Finley Project.

This podcast episode is available on Acast, Spotify and the For the Wild website.

The For the Wild podcast is a more-than-human anthology of podcasts on land-based protection, co-liberation and intersectional storytelling rooted in a paradigm shift away from human supremacy, endless growth and consumerism.

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