Merriam-Webster dictionary defines activism as a doctrine or practice that emphasizes direct vigorous action especially in support of or opposition to one side of a controversial issue. Pretty straight-forward and after reading the definition of activism you must be asking yourself what does it have to do with gardening? How about everything!
By gardening you are choosing to speak up for your values, speak up for what you believe in and take a stand for how you want the world to be. As many people garden to grow their own food, provide their own food independence and resiliency, not be reliant on big companies dictating your food choices, grow flowers that provide habitats for bees, enjoy the literal fruits of your labor and take charge of your own destiny. Standing for your food independence and resiliency, not relying on others to tell you what you should be doing and take action to be in charge of your own destiny sure sounds a lot like activism.
When you garden you are telling people that I don’t want to allow others to tell me how my life should be, I don’t want pesticide, herbicide or fungicide- on my flowers and vegetables and you are choosing to support causes that you are aligned. Which is no different than fighting for a cause that you believe in and telling the big businesses that want things to stay the same that you are voting for others options with your dollars. On top of all of this, gardeners tend to support the local economy with more vigor and buy their tools, seeds and garden support structures from local businesses because doing so aligns with their values.
So whether you garden to teach your children where food comes from, if you garden because you love beautiful flowers and wildlife, if you garden to grow your own food, if you garden for fun or if you garden for any other reason you are being an activist. You are creating positive change in the world and you are telling the world what matters to you and how you want to live your life. And the world is happy to have you speaking your truth.