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Ditch Girls

I'll take wild daisies and nettles,
Over the perfectly manicured life.

I'll walk with pride for my pretty weeds,
Tread softly around their chosen home.

Let seeds grow free and grasses procreate,
Just to see stalks glisten in the dew of the morning sun.

Appreciate what they offer.
Shatter media driven views of perfection,
for random chaotic beauty.
Their gift.

I'll take dandilions and chickweed
over the perfect

by Willow Chandler


The bridge between humanity and nature exists in the weeds we let grow free. Which is why we must tread softly in all aspects of civilation.

One of the most integral webs in life is our ditches. They attract my imagination. For their wild abandon and for their practical service. Like our veins, they carry life and feed our rivers, marshes, lakes, oceans and most importantly water table.

When we develop in a manner that is without thought to our tender ecosystem it will be a permenent drain on our resources...our life.

The Ditch Girl concept came to me while driving through Errington, one of the most beautiful rural communities on Vancouver Island. In a flash I was envisioning women standing in the grasses wearing the weeds of the ditches.

The concept stuck with me for years. Everytime I saw a particularly bountiful ditch I would think about it. Then, while visiting the Morden Mine this June, I felt a profound sense of regrowth and new it was time to start this project.

Ditch Girls will be more than just a beautiful book. It will be a testimony to our habitat. I hope you will enjoy the way I look at ditches.

See Willow's other photography on flickr