Vague Meadow now consists of 256 plants. Everyone is welcome to harvest leaves from the plants to eat (and the rabbits already does). The planting of more plants has now come to an end, so I will not move any more plants from the croft to Hyllie. The plants look a bit dry now the weather has become more sunny and windy, but I’m sure they will survive both this and the rabbits.
I have been thinking of Vague Meadow as a transfer of one place to another place. A close friend of mine thinks of it as a linking of two places. And maybe that’s more accurate. A visitor said the other day that I probably find my ways very well amongst the sticks (because I know the crofts garden very well). He said that it could look like a relation he had heard about, the similarities between Gothenburg and Jakarta. A person from Gothenburg should find his/her way in Jakarta because the city centres are alike. Rumours are that both cities were originally planned similarly by the same architect. I looked it up. In the 17th century it seems that Dutch town planners designed the canal system in Gothenburg and Jakarta (and even in New York) in a similar way. One city becomes a map for another city. Or?
Find my ways … I like the meaning of the words, but also the linking idea, where what was and what is to become is part of this ”finding ones ways”. It looks like what I think is artistic method, or what an artist does.
Dandelions bloom for the bigger part in spring. For some unknown reason there are almost no other dandelions growing in Hyllie besides the dandelions I’ve placed there. I have this vision that in April, there will be a yellow dotted carpet on the spot, around three empty rectangles. Shadows from somewhere else.
There is another aspect which my friend is pointing at. The memorial and the use of marginalized material. The linking could be seen as a memorial of one place at another place. Typically, it would be a vertical celebration in bronze. By using culturally unwanted, growing material like dandelions I alter everyday aspects of a place, not the heroic or spectacular. I think this is true. But I also remember my first idea, which was about growing spectacular pink- and white blooming varieties of dandelion. The idea wasn’t only naive (the dandelion plant will bloom first the second year of its life), it also included an urge to make something spectacular, unusual, special. Maybe that’s where I must look more carefully in my future project ideas.
Notions about place inform my ongoing work with Vague Meadow. I’m trying to think about place as dystopia. That is, at the brink of anthropocene (The Guardian: interview with Timothy Morton, an anthropocene philosopher), I ask if we still can think or rethink places (people) in idealistic terms, as utopian? All places are more or less dystopian, more or less bad. That make them political. They can be good for someone and bad for someone else at the same time. And they can be improved.
Or maybe we lack terms for places in a new geological era? We now know that agriculture produce extended soil erosion globally. Oceans turn sour and many species are deracinated.
Our temporary knowledge tells us that the place in Hyllie (the recessed area) is 5000 years old, in the holocene era. Back to when people started to grow land in Skåne. Erik Sanner has noted that the top soil layer at Hyllie, the most fertile ground in Sweden, was sold many years ago (http://agrikultura.triennal.se/sv/martian-neighborhood-hyllie/). Geology as commodity, anthropocene logic, in which human impact can be traced to every inch of the globe.
More to come…
Development from July 1 to July 30
… and the latest map.
Today I planted 30 plants. Next week I will plant an extra 30.
It seems that the product I use which makes an ”invisible fence” around the garden actually works. I can’t see any bite marks and the plants seem to be in very good condition. They grow.
And this is the map I used yesterday and the mappings so far below. The maps are not accurate.
The dandelion plants seem to thrive very well under these new conditions. I was very excited to see if the rabbits have eaten on the leaves. There must be hundreds of rabbits at the scene. I have used a product which is said to be totally environment friendly. It makes an invisible ”fence” around the groceries. It is called Revira. So far I have results which point in two different directions. Some plants look like they have been eaten on (by rabbits?), whilst other plants look very unaffected. (I have also used blood flour)
Look at the images below. The one at the top shows a plant which looks very healthy and hasn’t been eaten on. The image at the bottom shows a plant which clearly has been chewed on(but still looks strong).
Yesterday I planted 45 more dandelions. 15 of them were quite newly put in their pots. Usually the plants sit for one week in their pots before being planted out at Hyllie. But as an attempt to speed up the process a little I take a chance with these 15 (numbers 121-135).
I’ve also realized that the leaves must be small when I plant the dandelions in the pots. The important thing is the root. If the leaves are big, the root must deliver a lot and cannot restore and develop as fast as desired.
Drilling was easy as usual (clay only).
45 new dandelions to be shipped to Hyllie soon
I choose ”local” dandelions which grow within the premises of an old croft in Klippan. The limit is the borders which make up the garden. On the premises there are three houses.
In the garden dandelions are growing ”everywhere”. I pick plants which I believe will survive the migration to Hyllie. I want a plant which have a large stem root and not too big leaves. I also to a large extent pick plants which grow close to the houses, because I want the houses to appear as negative spaces at the scene in Hyllie. Besides that I try to pick plants from all parts of the garden.
I mark up each plant with a number which corresponds to a number plotted in on a map. The plant will be planted out in the field at Hyllie in the position as its number indicates.
In the garden in Klippan I dig up the dandelions with a long, narrow-bladed scoop. I stick it as deep as I can around the plant and then bend it up. The stem root usually goes off at the tip but it doesn’t matter as long as I get a major part of the stem root intact.
I plant the dandelion in a pot made of three layers of newspaper. It is cheap and easy. The pot has a diameter of 7 cm (to fit in the planting hole) and is apprx 16 cm high.
In the pot I put regular soil in the bottom and a third up, then another third with planting soil mixed with swell gel. Swell gel is a product which swells 15 times its own size when it gets wet. It holds the water, so it kind of creates a water reservoir under ground. On the last third I put the plant and some planting soil if needed.
The pot is placed with other pots in a plastic net basket. I let the basket in a shadowy place for a week, with some watering now and then. Now the stem roots develop new fine white threads which go out in all directions.
After a week the plants are ready for transport and planting out in the field. I have a soil drill which makes 7 cm holes. The soil in the recessed area is clay only. It is very easy to hand drill these holes. Each hole is then filled with a pot and marked with a stick with the corresponding number.