Occupy gardens? A case study of the People's Peas Garden in Toronto, Canada
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The purpose of this study was to investigate the nature of guerilla gardening as a possible means for political change. This study traced the historical roots of the People’s Peas Garden (PPG), a garden planted without permission on Queen’s Park, Toronto, in May 2012 by members of Occupy Gardens Toronto. The PPG was a significant event in Toronto’s urban gardening history as it challenged state control over land and social structure by being planted on a city-owned public park. A case study was conducted using semi-structured interviews to elicit the perspectives of PPG participants, Toronto food activists, and City of Toronto government officials. Participants perceived unjust distributional inequalities in the capitalist food system and experimented with ‘reclaiming’ the commons. Additionally, this research sheds broader insight on the potential of guerilla gardening as a means of addressing broader political, social and economic change.