Worst City/Gardener Clash Ever.

Worst City/Gardener Clash Ever.

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UPDATE:  Thanks to our alert readers for pointing out this Change.org petition you can sign.

Meet Denise Morrison, a Tulsa gardener who carefully read the city code and followed it, planting nothing in her front yard that exceeded 12 inches in height unless it was edible. She grew an assortment of medicinal herbs, food crops, edible flowers, etc.

And when the police showed up, she explained that to them.  Nicely.

And when the whole thing finally went to court, the charges of illegal gardening were dismissed.

But not before city workers cut down and destroyed all her plants.  Seriously.

I know we’ve got some readers in Tulsa.  Anybody have a more updated report?  Are there any efforts underway to help her replace some of the plants she’s lost?

I can’t tell for sure who her city council representative is, but a close watching of the video reveals a fragment of a street address, and using the Tulsa City Council’s district finder tool, I believe she lives in District 1.  Click here if you’d like to email her City Council member and let him know what you think about city employees destroying a resident’s front yard garden in violation of their own codes.  And if you’d like to contact the mayor, here’s a way to do that.

Can this possibly be Tulsa’s biggest law enforcement priority?  Or even its biggest code enforcement priority?

Is it even remotely possible that Tulsa should be encouraging and rewarding people who grow food in their front yards, not punishing them?  According to the news report, Denise has high blood pressure, diabetes, arthritis, is recently unemployed, and has no heath insurance.  Could anything (short of a job and health insurance) be BETTER for a woman in her situation than planting a garden that puts a little fresh, healthy food on her table?


[yframe url=’http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m7VN123cW2k&feature=share’]

Posted by

Garden Rant
on June 19, 2012 at 3:56 am, in the category Eat This, Feed Me, Ministry of Controversy.

    • Timeless Environments
    • 1st January 1970

    What an insane world this is coming to. This also is NOT the first time across the USA has pulled this stunt. There are a number of questions which come to mind.

    • Madeline
    • 18th April 1978

    well said, Kevin!

    • Cyber5
    • 26th January 1984

    Wow. That is horrible. Welcome to modern America. I hope she sticks it to them for every single seed purchase and all the time she spent watering,nurturing, fertilizing, etc.

    • Robin
    • 11th March 2011

    The city should be falling all over itself with apologies and efforts to correct what can be corrected. It’s time for judges and juries to hear these cases and make examples of these cities. Such a shame.

    • admin
    • 19th September 2015

    Women are scary & must be controled.

    • Deirdre in Seattle
    • 11th November 2015

    I want to hear THAT story!

    • Sandra
    • 31st July 2016

    Well said, everyone. Apparently there’s a memo that citizens growing their own food is a dangerous political act. It could be you know–getting off corporate junk food and big pharma–with healthy, clear minds and strong bodies we’d be so much more of a threat!

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