The Guest Edit:
The Pothole Gardener

Life’s little frustrations got you down? Having taken London’s sneakiest road hazard to hand with potting mix, seasonal blooms and miniature furniture, The Pothole Gardener knows a thing or two about unexpected moments of happiness. We caught up with our latest guest curator to find out a little bit more about guerrilla gardening, and his top tips for creating your own pothole garden.

How did you come to be The Pothole Gardener?
It all started as a project around happiness for my Masters in Design at Central Saint Martins. I was looking to transform something that annoyed people into something a little bit happier.

Why Potholes?
Potholes annoy everyone! Especially in this country – there is a proliferation after winter. I’d guerrilla gardened on a much larger scale in the past, but it seems that my tiny gardens had a much, much bigger impact.

Which plants or flowers survive best in an urban environment?
Well the brighter, the better because people see them and can avoid them! My favourites are daffodils.

How long do your potholes last?
Not long! But that’s not the point. If you get to see one, it makes you value the moment, and that’s a big part of the project.

What the best response you’ve had to one of your gardens?
Well in my film Holes Of Happiness, a bus driver stopped his bus, got out, and stole the garden! When we asked him about it, he just said he wanted to take it home for his wife, which is really sweet! when we explained we’d taken some time to create it, he was a little embarrassed and put it back.

I think the best ever response was from a policeman, who asked me what I was doing. When I explained he got on his radio and told all the other police in the area to come and check it out, because he liked it so much!

We want to make a pothole garden, can you give us any advice?
OK, so find a spot on the footpath and have a think about what you want to create. Generally try and find a 2 or 3 small plants that are bright and in bloom. At this time of year, pansies are a safe bet. Then, get digging and planting, and if you have a tiny prop to hand, add it to create your little scene! The perfect pot hole garden is full of colour, and will tell a little story! The best bit? Sitting back and watching people come across your little garden – just wait for the smiles!

Our latest guest curator’s pick of products is set to make you feel a whole lot chirpier.

“Fun colours and fully recycled. What’s not to love about these?”
Fair Trade Recycled Rice Bag
by recycle-recycle

“High fashion meets gardening. Just don’t try and slip them on…”
Concrete Brogue Shoes Plant Pots
by TheLittleBoysRoom

“You thought it was all about the birds and the bees, right? Well don’t forget the butterflies with these seeds.”
Two Pack Of Bee And Butterfly Friendly Seeds
by Bee Friendly Seeds

“Wouldn’t this be a wonderful thing to stumble across in the garden? (Even better if you’re a birdie).”
Ceramic Bird Feeder
by Hunter Gatherer

Sometimes you have to save the best for later… (and #sorrynotsorry forward your wishlist onto friends and family come birthday time).

Chilli Jute Bag Grow Set
by BEEcycle

Grow Basil In An Egg
by BEEcycle

I Bloody Love Gardening’ Gardening Mug
by Kelly Connor Designs Knitting Bags and Gifts

Glass Jam Jar Glass With Straw
by all things Brighton beautiful

Living Art Frame
by Cockburn Engineering

Oak Welly Rack
by a+b furniture

Artificial Grass Garden Sofa
by Artificial landscapes

Vertical Garden Planters
by Freshly Forked

Vintage Bike Personalised Seed Packet Favour
by Wildflower Favours

Shop The Pothole Gardener collection now.

Steve Wheen started The Pothole Gardener Project during his Masters in Design at Central Saint Martins. In a bid to create unexpected moments of happiness, the project became about offering people respite from the greyness of urban environments. The response to his guerrilla gardening has been overwhelming. People from around the world now create their own pothole gardens, which Steve posts on his blog. His first book, The Little Book of Little Gardens, was published by Dokument Press late in 2012. Steve has also made various films about his gardens.


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