This week, Green State Gardener added a new contribution to Burlington’s South End, a district known for its eclectic shops and vibrant artwork. The gardening supply and hydroponic equipment shop, nestled behind Daedalus Wine and ArtsRiot, now features a lush mural, proudly displayed beside their brick-and-mortar entrance.
“The mural is great because it beautifies the city, as well as anchors Green State Gardener’s place in the Arts District,” said CEO Dylan Raap from their Pine Street location, adding that the company worked hand-in-hand with Burlington City Arts to find the right artist and design for the project.
It was important for both companies to find a local Vermont painter, and after the pool was narrowed down to five artists, Kathryn Wiegers of Rutland, Vermont and her design fit the bill. “Kathryn’s work here is important because she employs a unique technique of using fabric substrate instead of painting right onto brick; this gives the work a longer lifespan, especially in Vermont’s climate,” explained Sara Katz, assistant director of BCA. Looking at the mural, one can see how this method brings prominence to the color and flow of the work more so than your average urban street mural.
Beyond the visual appeal lies a deeper meaning: ‘Grown Your Own Health Revolution.’ While neither cannabis nor hemp are featured on the work, every plant displayed has medicinal values akin to cannabis. “This is a big part of our philosophy here at Green State: we want people to grow their own medicine, and this idea should be out in the streets, not tucked away in people’s basement or closet,” said GSG General Manager Kelsy Raap, as we spoke in front of several featured hemp grow setups on Green State Gardener’s showroom floor.
“People seeing a beautiful mural like this helps to reduce the stigma against cannabis and CBD,” Wiegers said. “It can also be a symbol of breaking down the barriers toward growing and using any natural plants to heal rather than synthetic drugs.”
Aesthetically pleasing as it may be with its color palette of rich reds and greens, this mural symbolizes a lot more for Green State Gardener. Not only does it reinforce their presence as a South End mainstay, but it demonstrates their commitment to revitalizing the community around them while growing the local health revolution, one patient at a time.