Urban Gardening is in the CF Air

May 22, 2011

Many in the CF ecosystem have taken to urban gardening, as a personal response to be the change.  In SF, folks help out with the Free Farm (watch Church Without Walls); in one of Oakland's most violent neighborhoods, Pancho and friends are in the planning stages of forming "The Canticle Farm" with their neighbors; in Santa Clara, CF Mom and Dad have setup four raised-bed veggie patches in the their backyard; in Berkeley, Chris and friends are working on PULP -- People's Ultra Local Produce; in Marin, Marion is growing her own food and gifting it to her neighbors.  And most recently, in Vadodara, Jiganasha has started her own local plant-your-food campaign!  It doesn't just stop there.  For our *art* magazine, Richard drove up to Vancouver to publish a conversation with two legendary "city farmers".  In the field of technology, Neil is creating technology to empower farmers via cell phones.  Of course, there's Karma Kitchen too.  And then, there's our many friends who are involved in related organizations.  Its in the air.

In his excellent article Why Bother?, Michael Pollan shares an eloquent conclusion: "You begin to see that growing even a little of your own food is one of those solutions that, instead of begetting a new set of roblems, actually beget other solutions, and not only of the kind that save carbon. Still more valuable are the habits of mind that growing a little of your own food can yield.    In this one corner of your yard and life, you will have begun to heal the split between what you think and what you do, to commingle your identities as consumer and producer and citizen. Chances are, your garden will re-engage you with your neighbors, for you will have produce to give away and the need to borrow their tools. You will have reduced the power of the cheap-energy mind.  The garden’s season-long transit from seed to ripe fruit suggests that the abundance of nature is not exhausted. The single greatest lesson the garden teaches is that our relationship to the planet need not be zero-sum, and that as long as the sun still shines and people still can plan and plant, think and do, we can find ways to provide for ourselves without diminishing the world."

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"Service doesn't start when you have something to give; it blossoms naturally when you have nothing left to take."

"Real privilege lies in knowing that you have enough."