Skip to main content

Blogging Past Midnight; It's Spring, Indeed

People invite me to their houses to for me to offer ideas and advice and/or to scout out sites for where I'll place their new Square Foot Gardens... and every now-and-again, they ask, "So is this all you do?"  This question always makes me smile.

I know (I assume) this question originates from intrigue.  How cool, they must think, I'm able to keep busy just doing food gardens.  If they only knew...

It's springtime and the soil is growing warm.

Starting at 8am yesterday morning, I led a team of high school boys (who are members at my church) around town doing community and school garden projects.  We started at our church, Faith Presbyterian where we top-dressed and-- with the help of the elementary kids-- planted "God's Giving Garden."  From there, we took two trips to Hartsfield Elementary to deliver a load of compost (compliments of the Damayan Garden Project) for their newly cleaned-up garden.  Last, the boys and I visited Bethel Towers to overhaul their raised-bed garden.

After picking up a few tools where I'd left them at church, I went home for a brief pause.  At 3pm, I hosted a seven 4-10 year-olds for a food garden workshop.  After hammering a raised-bed together in my front yard, filling it with compost, and planting it (with tomatoes, peppers, shallots, squash and beans), all the kids went home with their own raised-bed kits.  It was quite the event.  Now that my neighbor Heather has blessed us with bees, and we've recently acquired chickens, the kids must have thought we are real urban farmers.

And so goes springtime: shoveling compost, garden installs, consultations, Just Fruits, doing the books, and blogging past midnight.  I wouldn't trade it for a desk job any day.

To keep things visually interesting, here is a picture from a week back where I did an intro-garden-maintenance talk at the Havana Community Garden orientation.  Do you know that all of their 38 15x15ft plots are rented and they have a waiting list?  Do you know they only started organizing their community garden last fall?  Kudos for Havana.

Below I share picture-space with the amazing Dr. Jennifer Taylor of the FAMU state-wide Small Farms Program.  Just so happened, she also was in Havana to offer an intro-talk to gardeners.

Wanna know what's exciting my sense of possibilities the past few weeks?  Jennifer Taylor and I are working together on dreams to gather all the Big Bend community and school gardeners, activists, organizations, resource people, and supportive governmental types for the "First Ever Community Gardening Gathering of the Big Bend."  As I know more, I'll pass it along.

Popular posts from this blog

Why Can I Eat Bread in France, but not the USA?

Updated 10/31/2017 as the National Organic Standards Board meets in Jacksonville, FL. This may well be the most important thing you read this year for your health. (Originally written in 2015 while I was traveling-- and eating bread-- with my wife in France.)

I've got a food riddle for you from Paris, France: Why can I eat bread over here when it makes me sick at home?

I'll share my best guess in a minute, but first, a little personal background.

Since my senior year of high school, I've not been able to eat much bread at all. For five years, I was severely hypoglycemic, and everything I ate had to have more protein than carbohydrates. That meant, in effect, that I spent my years of college beer-less and eating lots of salad with meat on top. I ate tons of vegetables, very little fruit, basically no carbohydrates to speak of, meat, nuts, eggs, and cheese. If I accidentally ate, say, meat loaf that was, unbeknownst to me, made with bread in it, I'd spend the next 2-3 da…

Man in Overalls - The Valley of Food & Ag Startups: Warren Wilson College

If you're interested in tech, pay attention to Silicon Valley. If you're interested in food and agriculture, Swannnoa Valley, more specifically Warren Wilson College, is the place to keep on your radar.
I'm an alum and proud of it, class of 2008. I studied community organizing, wrote a 140 page thesis about social movements as my capstone.
It's a work college, one of seven in the country. Think universal work-study, so in addition to whatever one's academic track, students are also working in the cafeteria, the library, admissions, as carpenters, lock smiths, lab techs, and-- per the agricultural legacy of Warren Wilson-- as row crop, animal, and vegetable farmers, gardeners, and edible landscapers.  Personally, I worked on the electric crew and then on the landscape crew where I led the edible landscape sub-crew in managing a 1-acre edible (Permaculture) landscape around the "Ecodorm."

Per the "triad" of Warren Wilson's educational system,…

Man in Overalls - Growing Great Soil

Good soil will basically grow your groceries for you, but how do you build great soil? 
The answer is that there are two options: a quick & easy way and a DIY, hard(er) way. 

So we're on the same page, I'm continuing my #GrowYourGroceries The Easy Way series by digging into the how-tos of growing great soil. These stories and techniques will likely make the most sense after reading Geeking on Good Soil, my last update. (I outlined where I was headed in The Big Picture.)

As I was saying, the easy way to build a great soil is to fill raised beds with a terrific compost-based soil mix like my Magic Mix to jump start your food garden productivity from year one. From there, seasonally, you simply top-dress each season before planting with another few inches of compost-based soil mix. This is how I manage my own food garden and those of my customers. Why? Because at the root of things, I'm a lazy food gardener, and long ago I decided to embrace it. 😎

But if you're not in th…