Guerrilla Gardening?

Urban Agriculture and the Environment
  • Rauno Lahtinen
Part of the Palgrave Studies in World Environmental History book series (PSWEH)


During World War II, all countries at war were threatened by a severe decline in agricultural production. Wartime urban agriculture is a well-known phenomenon, yet most studies discuss it in a highly cursory way, and the environmental dimension has been neglected. This chapter explores the situation in Turku, which was Finland’s third-largest city during the war. From a contemporary perspective, the wartime city could be considered an ecological society. City residents raised their food themselves, and all possible waste was recycled. But the shortages also led to negative phenomena, such as animal abuse, declines in hygiene, the poaching of fish and animals, and the stripping of forests. Lahtinen argues that the wartime urban agriculture was literally a loot-based economy, the sustainability of which proved untenable.

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Rauno Lahtinen
    • 1
  1. 1.University of TurkuTurkuFinland

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