If you have 10 minutes to spare you should spend it watching this TED Talk. Ron Finley is a Los Angeles resident who refers to himself as a guerrilla gardener. Finley noticed that his South L.A. neighborhood had tons of vacant lots -- enough to fill 26 Central Parks in NYC. That's a bunch of dirt. He also noticed that restricted access to nutritious food and prevalent eating habits in his community were making a lot of people sick.
"The drive-thrus are killing more people than the drive-byes," Finley says. So the dude planted a garden.
Finley plants gardens in medians and homeless shelters. He plants gardens aside urban city streets and anywhere else he can plant one without getting fined by the city. (Yeah, that happened.) And he uses these gardens to foster dialogue about changing the food system that plagues many urban areas in our county.
In fact, much of his video (except for L.A.'s climate) rings true right here in Dallas. We've written about the food deserts that exist here before. Finley's gardens, and gardens like the one planted at Paul Quinn College, have the potential to slowly chip away at this problem. "Kids who grow kale, eat kale," says Finely. And kale and tomatoes look prettier than Walmart and other big box grocery chains that have been proposed as a solution to the problem.