To be a gangster is not only about doing bad. You can just start a garden to be one too! Here are 20 Ron Finley quotes to bring out the gangsta gardener in you.


Ron Finley, a Little Background

Ron Finley is a former fashion designer turned gardening enthusiast (“renegade gardener” as some call him).

His act of defiance came in 2010 when he noticed that there was no healthy produce available near him. So he dug up a strip of land usually reserved for trash and weeds and planted in it some fruits and vegetables. Despite objection from the authorities, he persevered and got the law changed. Thus gaining his title of the gangster gardener.

His initiative of urban farming in public places has caught the attention of lots of people (his TED talk itself has millions of views). And his message of “if you can grow it there, you can grow it anywhere” has started a movement among gardeners. This initiative of his has also helped to feed the hungry mouths of many.

Source: Masterclass

These days with junk food popping up left and right. And with the costly price of fresh produce. It’s no question that most people are turning to growing their own food. This pandemic has especially gotten that point across thanks to people spending more time at home.

Urban gardening has also seen a boom thanks to Ron Finley’s efforts. It not only allows people to bond over growing fruits and veggies but also gives everyone easy access to healthy, organic food. As he nicely stated: “If you grow together, you grow together. That’s what communities do.”

Hopefully, our compilation of Ron Finley’s gangster gardener quotes can bring out that badass (gardener) in you!

Gangster Gardener Quotes

Source: Leroy Hamilton (@photoham) for The Ron Finley Project

#1 “Gardening is gangsta: Mother Nature is gangsta. Being educated, creative and self-sustaining is gangsta”

#2 “Gardening is the most therapeutic and defiant act you can do, especially in the inner city.”

#3 “I am an artist. Gardening is my graffiti. A graffiti artist beautifies walls; I beautify parkways and yards. I treat the garden as a piece of cloth and the plants and the trees are the embellishment of that cloth. You’d be surprised what soil can do if you let it be your canvas.”

#4 “People need to realize how powerful the transformation of soil can be.”

#5 “I’ve seen people change their whole lives once they garden.”

#6 “This ain’t no damn hobby. This is life.”

#7 “We have to flip the script on what a gangsta is. If you ain’t a gardener, you ain’t gangsta. Let that be your weapon of choice!” Ron Finley in TED

#8 “We’ve gotten so far away from our food source. It’s been hijacked from us. But if you get soil, plant something in it and water it, you can feed yourself. It’s that simple.”

#9 “I know people out there don’t like leafy greens, I don’t either. But put them in your diet anyway cause it’s one of the healthiest things you can possibly eat.” Ron Finley for MasterClass

#10 “If you can grow it there, you can grow it anywhere.”

#11 “If kids grow kale, kids eat kale. If they grow tomatoes, they eat tomatoes. But when none of this is presented to them, if they’re not shown how food affects the mind and the body, they blindly eat whatever you put in front of them.”

#12 “Food is the problem, food is the solution.”

#13 “I don’t want my food local. I want my food hyper local.”

#14 “There’s no end to the bounty of mother nature. There’s enough for everybody.”

#15 “Once you get in the garden, you realize that almost everything is possible”

#16 “Gardening changes people’s lives – it shows the alchemy and the art of Mother Nature. It gives you a reverence and respect for soil, tiny seeds, water. If we want to change this, all over the world, we have to make growing and producing food sexy. It’s where I find my solace, my joy. The soil seduces you. You do the soil’s bidding.”

#17 “Growing your own food is like printing your own money.”

#18 “That whole concept [gardening in his community] was about turning a negative into a positive. If you want to be gangsta about anything, make it about building your community, sharing knowledge.”

#19 “If you grow together, you grow together. That’s what communities do.”

#20 “There are no mistakes. There are only lessons.”

Wrapping It Up

Growing our own food is truly something that everyone should do. You get your own fruits and veggies, and you get to enjoy the process from the start. Being able to share it with the community makes it even better.

This is the main initiative of the renegade gardener, Ron Finley: to get people to plant their own fresh product, and be able to provide to the community through these means. He’s pushing for most, if not all people to grow their own food and eat fresh from the backyard. “Plant some shit.” as his mantra goes.

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Hi there! I’m Guy, the guy behind Guy About Home (that’s a lot of guy’s). I’m just your average guy (ok, I’ll stop) living in the USA who is really interested in making and doing.