Monday, April 27, 2009

fruits of labor

solo post – L, Nikon D60

“Faith sees a beautiful blossom in a bulb, a lovely garden in a seed, and a giant oak in an acorn.”
- William Arthur Ward

As some of you know, my brother has been planning and preparing a neighborhood garden.
No this is not my brother's garden but it's what he hopes his will look like soon – on a much smaller scale of course. These photos were taken at a very nice community garden in B'ham. There were strawberries, onions and many, many different types of lettuces and beans, even fava beans. I had not had fava beans until just recently when I bought some at Trader Joes. They have a buttery texture and slightly nutty flavor. I thought they were pretty tasty. These strawberries were looking so ripe and juicy I wanted to pick one right then and there.
I love the concept of community gardens. So many families don't have the space to plant a nice garden, or the full sun that is needed, so this gives those who want to grow their own food a place to do just that. It engages young people and families, even seniors that may now live in a retirement home. And what a great learning experience for children. I feel like every community should have at least one area for a big garden like this. It cultivates greenspace and inspires environmental stewards and in these economic times would be of great value to many of us.
After seeing this garden, my brother was concerned that he didn't raise his beds enough. He considered digging up the plants he already had in the ground to redo his beds. So far he has planted tomatoes, eggplant, bell peppers, and lettuce. He's going to plant beans and potatoes too. His chickens are still too young to put outdoors but they are a part of the project as well. What would you include in a community garden? He hopes that his neighbors will pitch in and help keep the garden producing all year long like they say they will – many voiced interest but you know how that goes. Do you have any experience with community gardens? If it all grows/goes well it will be so rewarding on many levels - and everyone will be able to enjoy the fruits of their labor.

8 comments:

Char said...

bmy brother is part of a community garden with friends - they planted tomatoes, corn, cucumbers, peppers, and okra that I know of. they said peas are too labor intensive and they're just as cheap to get them from a local farmer's market.

i love the community gardens in Bham (and will miss them) - I always purchased from them at Pepper Place Market.

Miko's Girl said...

My parents participated in a community garden, and I also did as a young apartment dweller.

What would I include - an arbor covered with a vine at the entrance to welcome the community, places to sit, compost bins, a sunflower house in the middle for the kids to play, maybe a potting bench.

SE'LAH... said...

WOW...strawberries already? I love community gardening. So much better tasting than the supermarket.

Georgia B. said...

i would love to have a garden. my sister's husband is from Romania, and his father lives with them. they are very big on their fresh garden fruits and veggies. whenever we go over there, they send us home with loads of cucumbers and peppers and so much good stuff!

these shots are so nice. some day . . . i'll have one too.

Gayle said...

I grew up with vegetable gardening. My grandmother always had a garden and since I've had my own house, I've always had one. My favorite thing is the tomatoes because they are so much better than the ones from the food store. I wonder if all the community members will pitch in to your brother's.

elk said...

color so vivid green ~quote so strikingly true...
no veggie gardener am i ...just flowers

Relyn said...

I also love the idea of community gardens. But, you know what I hate? Getting my hands so dirty. And the creepy way that worms crawl. ICK! Nope. No garden for me.

Claire said...

south africa is filled with community gardens in the rural areas but unfortunately the urban areas lack this initiative.

i plan to start one here in ireland as we will be living in the country as of end of may.

i will share my thoughts as they unravel during the process. just reading this i have learnt from you and your brother and the comments.

footnote

The photos on the left are taken by me, Leslye, the mother. The photos on the right are taken by my daughter, Taylor – unless otherwise noted. Comments are always welcome. thanks
If you care to visit, I, Leslye, have another blog - AutumnSun where I ramble around different paths and pleasures of my own.