I’m a huge fan of bubble gum, so it pains me to say this, but two crackerjack designers, Daniel Phillips and Kim Karlsrud of Greenaid in LA have come up with a much better use for gumball machines. They’ve turned them into Seedbomb dispensers – and for 50 cents, instead of rotting your teeth, you can spread beauty liberally around your neighborhood.
What a genius concept! Turns out that Kim’s dad used to place candy dispensers all over Pittsburgh as a money-making hobby. When he finally retired to Arizona, he asked Kim if she wanted the machines, and sent out five dispensers to tempt her. They sat there, haunting Daniel and Kim, until one day—an epiphany! They could repurpose the machines and fill them with ammo for guerrilla gardeners.
Seedbombs are cute, bloomable balls of compost, clay, and a native wildflower mix of white yarrow, California poppy, lupine, and blue flax (that’s for LA, but every region will have its own regionally appropriate wildflower mix with no invasive plants).
The idea is to encourage people to start looking at every vacant lot, empty median strip, and ugly brown patch as a place to spread your seed and grow something lovely by tossing a Seedbomb in there to explode into flowers. There’s even some talk about creating an i-phone geo-tagging app so you can watch your progeny grow, or water someone else’s wild offspring. What a great way to beautify a community!
“We’re not spreading flowers so much as we’re spreading awareness that anybody – and everybody – can be a part of beautifying public space,” says Daniel.
To that end, Greenaid plans to spread another 12 Seedbomb dispensers through Watts and other disadvantaged areas, and return all the profits back to the underserved communities. They’re raising money now on Kickstarter and have just 3 more days to reach their numbers (they’re 87% of the way there). When you consider that these are some of the greyest neighborhoods in Los Angeles, it’s worth a little of my green to support guerrilla gardening.
You can vote with your dollars right here … and you can also rent a Seedbomb dispenser for your bar, restaurant, business or wedding party. Promote guerrilla gardening and start a green revolution of your own!