Sometimes all you can do is vent.
A Redditor a couple of years ago started “a solidarity thread” for those who had their plants destroyed by neighbors.
“This is really difficult for us to deal with because the neighbor in question is a boy with some… Issues,” the poster wrote. “So it’s not like I can get mad at him for being inconsiderate.
“Shredded paper and other trash dumped out their window onto our pots, still finding plastic from them in old soil I used, now a straight up kitchen pot chucked down the stairs taking out half of a lovely fern we had out front that had been thriving.”
Many of the tales were jaw-dropping.
“Ugh this is so sad, I’m sorry,” another user commiserated. “My neighbors are pretty cool and have better gardens than mine, but my own husband is my horror story lol. He had a fit of ‘helping’ when we first moved into our house a couple years ago and ripped out all the ‘weeds’ in the front bed because he’d heard me say I needed to do it. He didn’t know what was what and got rid of alllllll these beautiful expensive shade plants like hellebore and columbines. I got home from work and almost died, couldn’t talk to him for a whole day.”
The results were heartbreaking, as these gardeners were just trying to beautify their environments, grow food, and save money. Gardens and gardening can do all that and more, from reducing pollution to providing habitat for pollinators and other wildlife.
Native plants in particular are a boon, requiring less water, fertilizer, and maintenance, and they strengthen soil, prevent erosion, and reduce flooding. Studies have also shown that community gardening improves well-being, lowers stress and anxiety, and makes people healthier.
All the benefits can help counter any nuisances — and beyond — that arise in the course of things.
“My old neighborhood was a really popular spot for dog-walking. People from across town would drive to my street and park to walk their dogs,” one commenter wrote. “A not insignificant number of them would allow their dogs to traipse through my front flower beds, kick around, and poop. One time I was in my front garden when they did it! When confronted, they stammered ‘oh, I … didn’t know, sorry.’ Didn’t know someone might not like a row of crushed irises with dog s*** all over them? Damn that was about 10 years ago and it still makes me angry to think about.”
Another user replied: “Didn’t know, more like didn’t care.”
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