With spring nearly here, gardeners everywhere are starting to prep their gardens by removing overgrown winter weeds and grass. While most of us are conditioned to identify plants that grow naturally in our yards as weeds, we may not realize that many among them are not only edible, but are excellent sources of free nutrition. Dutch design agency Overtreders W (Trespassers W) recognized the culinary potential of urban vegetation and designed a transforming, mobile prep station for harvesting, drying and processing unwanted plants into tasty meals.
De Onkruidenier (The Weedgrocer) is a multi-use mobile structure that comprises parts designed as hand carts for easy transportation across uneven terrain. The fieldwork station comprises a field kitchen, a drying cabinet, a harvesting bench and two workbenches. Users can pick their plants, store them in the drying cabinet and work completely sheltered from the elements.
The architects used Dutch common weeds– wood from the douglas fir, withies from the white willow and linen cloth impregnated with linseed oil made of flax– to build The Weedgrocer. The team launched this fantastic project during Ball!, the big summer exhibition of 2016 taking place in the former royal palace Paleis Soestdijk in the Netherlands. Since then, The Weedgrocer has been traveling throughout the country, raising awareness on the use of urban vegetation in daily life.
Photos by Overtreders W (fieldwork station), Frouwkje Smit (workshop)