• Jaya Julienne Ashmore

Two butterflies that hadn't been seen before

What are some of the specific things we can learn from lockdown? Let's learn this clearly so we can start to move towards a life-sustaining culture now, instead of looking back to "normal." Here are two stories from the Guardian's "Age of Extinction" coverage...two cities where life is happening, and lockdown helped life happen better.

Ron Finley is a "gangsta gardener" in LA. "...for Finley, gardening is "about growing people. Planting is his unusual form of protest..." “'People looked at my garden like "your little hobby"or something, now people realize this is no damn hobby, this is life and death. This is our revolution,' says Finley." “'Plant some shit' is his simple mantra... "Plants and vegetables have been growing out of boxes, buckets and even old trainers for years. A catalogue of varieties are flourishing – Valencia oranges, papyrus, Mexican marigolds, blackberries, fennel and tomatoes. He encourages passersby to pick what they want." And..."Finley’s backyard urban jungle is big enough to live off (about 70ft feet by 40ft or 21x12 metres) and he has only left his property once – to buy some fish – since he started self-isolating on 11 March. He’s feeling smug: 'I’m eating from the garden every meal, I’ve lost eight or nine pounds. I feel better and I feel stronger. You think you feel good, then you feel really good, and you’re like damn!'" https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2020/apr/28/ron-finley-gangsta-gardener-transforming-los-angeles

During lockdown in early spring, Barcelona parks were left free of traffic and even from gardening. It rained a lot, and life went crazy.

More plants, more insects and more food for birds.


"The Urban Butterfly Monitoring Scheme found that in May and June there were 28% more species per park and 74% more butterflies than the same period in 2019, including new species not previously seen in the city such as the rock grayling (Hipparchia semele) and lesser purple emperor (Apatura ilia).

"Once the gardeners went back to work, the question was whether to return everything to its neat and tidy state, or let nature take its course?"

The City Council had been about to start a program of "naturalizing" the city before the pandemic. Now, they have a headstart.

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2021/jan/31/bat-boxes-greened-streets-and-insect-hotels-barcelona-embraces-its-wild-side-aoe

Thanks, Mom, for sharing this article.

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