Friday, April 2, 2010

Making My Bed and Planting It

Last weekend I walked over yonder some blocks, not too far from my place, to check out a plot to "farm" conversion. The advert asked for any and all to help shape up about 5000 square feet into something productive. There were large trees, and good slope, thick perennial weeds and surely millions of annual seeds waiting for the clearing. This is real ground-breaking, beating plots to ploughshares. I wish I could've risen early for their 9 am start, but this was unlikely for a night-time worker. When I did arrive, the work was buzzing, felt awkward without a shovel, contemplated the scene, took a photo and went about my day.

As much as I fantasize that I should be a part of something like this, and as much as I like growing vegetables, I tend to find a few initiative-killing excuses. Besides, I needed to go to the studio that day, the day before having been a wash. Quashing thoughts of anti-social shame, I made my way to the farmer's market in hope of ramps, or anything vegetable.

On my exit for the studio, I stopped to look at the various plants rather vigorously coming up in the garden. A woman walking a dog passed, turning to me to ask if this was my garden. A half hour conversation ensued about plants, city gardening, bugs and raccoons. Her name was Sada (spelling??) and her dog was named Chance and they both enjoy my front yard.

That meeting, by chance, made me feel quite a bit less anti-social and I felt far better about not joining the new farm than I did just an hour before. Gardening was always a private activity for me, a place of lost in my thoughts, physicality, and head-clearing. The communal activity of the plot farmers, maybe a little overwhelming, and honestly, a lot of work.

Xris over at the Flatbush Gardener, a much more community-minded citizen than I, did attend to help out. See his post here.

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