Strange Gardens: Greenery in 14 Unexpected Places

Why should gardens be limited to pots, planting boxes and the ground? The plants that surround and sustain us are an inextricable part of our existence on this planet, and some innovative gardeners seek to honor them in unexpected ways. These 14 gardens have incorporated greenery into the strangest, funniest and coolest paces, from public restrooms to our pockets.

Pockets


(image via: eglecekanaviciute.com)

You can be a walking human planter with garments from designer Egle Cekanaviciute’s six-piece Seed Collection. This series of pants, dresses, tops and more comes with specially-designed pockets that can be filled with soil and fertilizer, so you can grow the plants of your choice. “The collection is styled following the obvious conclusion that any human creation is helpless against the power of nature.”

Churches

(image via: architizer)

England’s York Minister cathedral was temporarily filled with a real, living lawn that was grown on recycled felt and then installed in successive layers. The whole installation measured an amazing 1,500 square feet – and yes, it continued to grow while it was inside the church, requiring mowing! The grass was put in place for the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee.

Billboards

(image via: kickstarter)

Existing billboards could be filled with plants instead of advertisements. UrbanAir is a project by artist Stephen Glassman that has received enough funding through Kickstarter to begin installing vertical urban gardens where billboards stand. The first is planned for the Los Angeles freeway.

More Real Growing Garments

(image via: plainsart.org)

Stevie Famulari, an assistant professor at NDSU’s landscape architecture department, has created five stunning garments including an opera gown, a wedding gown, a laced gown, an asymmetrical gown and a lawn coat that are seeded with living plants. Lined with waterproof material and totally wearable, these garments will continue to grow and change over time.

Abandoned Underground Bank Vault

(image via: the urban grocer)

Would you ever expect to find a food-producing garden in an abandoned underground bank vault? Pasona 02 is a real working farm measuring one square kilometer, located beneath the streets of Tokyo. Not only does it grow food in a city that has a low rate of food self-sufficiency, it also employs jobless youth and prepares them for work in the agricultural industry.

Flip Flops

(image via: design milk)

If you love the feel of grass between your toes, these flip flops were designed just for you. A company called KUSA has made living grass footwear available to the public, but unfortunately, this grass isn’t real – it’s synthetic.

Necklaces and Bikes

(image via: wearable planter)

Take plants on a bike ride or just wear them around your neck. Etsy seller Wearable Planter creates 3D-printed miniature planters in various rounded and geometric shapes.

Flyer Boxes

(image via: treehugger)

Toronto guerilla gardener Posterchild is ‘occupying’ empty flyer boxes with fresh herbs, including mint and thai basil. The herbs provide a pop of color and greenery to unused urban spaces, and their powerful scents help balance out the bad smells of the city.

Urinals

(image via: gardens in unexpected places)

The men’s room of a former elementary school that now serves as a charter high school for young mothers and pregnant teens has now been put to a rather unusual use: it’s a garden. The school’s grounds also feature a four-acre urban farm which helps teach the teens about gardening.

Phone Booths

(image via: voav)

Posterchild hasn’t limited his guerilla gardening to flyer boxes; empty pay phones have also provided an ideal space for custom-made wooden planters, which are secured to the remnants of this obsolete mode of communication with wire.

Barges

(image via: groundwork hv)

It’s a garden on a barge! Much more than a garden, actually – the Science Barge is a prototype sustainable farm floating on the Hudson River. It features a greenhouse growing all kinds of fresh produce, and it’s powered by solar panels, wind turbines and biofuels.

Computers

(image via: storage geek)

This is an actual working computer made by Mike Schropp of Total Geekdom, which has a built-in compartment for growing wheatgrass. The heat from the computer helps the wheatgrass grow in cooler temperatures – like air-conditioned homes.

Dish Dryer

(image via: yanko design)

Even your dish rack could be a planter, if this concept from Jordan Bailey ever became a reality. ‘Trio’ is envisioned as an environmental solution for air-drying dishes, in which the collected water is used support upside-down planters of herbs.

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