Donated punk Shopping Carts
Burlap coffee bean bags for liners
Best soil I can get
Ground up coconut shells leftover from local hydroponic
—Stella Marrs, artist and creator of shopping cart victory
Abandoned shopping carts are a well-known feature of urban
living, but I wonder if as many intriguing uses of them have been made in other
cities? Here in Buffalo I have seen a photo-documentary project in which they
were scientifically catalogued (this became an Abrams-published book and a successful Chelsea gallery show), a garden furniture repurposing project, and
this, in which 50 of them have been filled with edible plants (vegetables,
herbs, and flowers) and distributed throughout the downtown residential area.
They are tethered to parking meters (made obsolete by new
systems, for the most part), porch railings, fences, and so on. The ones I have
seen look as though they’ve been watered, and all the plants are alive and
producing. I am not sure if all the plants are being harvested; some of the
herbs I saw have gone to seed. Whoever lives/works in the nearest
storefront/residence is responsible for its shopping cart garden.
They are particularly useful where there is no gardening
area whatsoever, but they are also attractive next to larger
conventional gardens (top). I think it’s a neat idea.
Note: The link I have given goes to an older website for Marrs's postcards, for which she is best known, and which predate her move to Buffalo. It does not mention the shopping cart gardens; there is very little online about these.