Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Help from Mother Nature

 The Crossroads were lucky enough to have some rain today. There was a fair amount off rain in the downtown are of Victoria and it brought a smile to my to know that O.U.R. Community Garden was getting a nice soaking from Mother Nature herself.

So far O.U.R. garden has produced a generous amount of vegetables. Rosa Linda Garcia, the mastermind behind the idea, and I tried to keep track of everything we pulled, but lost count along the way. Between the two of doing most of the picking, we need to find a way to document our harvests when the other isn't there. Luke found a nice art set in the dumpster next to the garden so hopefully, we will have our method of keeping track in line soon. But given the way the plants produce and how long ago we lost count, I know the numbers are right around or more than: 150 cucumbers, 200 chile pequin, 60 okra, 7 watermelons, nearly 100 tomatoes, 20 bell peppers, 20 summer squash and soon we will have a handful of weighty butternut squash.

Of all the vegetables we've been lucky enough to harvest a small handful go to those that work in the garden and the rest goes to Christ's Kitchen,  a local soup kitchen, the shut-in ministry and to the Our Lady of Sorrows ReSale Shoppe where it is distributed to other parishioners community members in need. The best thing about being a contributing member of the garden is knowing that the food is fresh and unadulterated but man-made fertilizers and pesticides. All the things in our garden thrive and grow via the dirt and sunshine exactly how we find them every morning or evening when we are there. Knowing the vegetables are fresh and healthy for everyone who eats them is the most gratifying for me.

Along those same lines, I have been trying to get a foraging community up and going. Here in Victoria there is an abundance of food growing out in the open. Not barricaded behind fences and or hidden behind houses. They're growing at the park, along apartment buildings and railroad tracks. I don't know what kind of response, but I hope to get something together soon. The pomegranates are turning red, the grapes are turning purple and its time to start making wonderful eats out of all that Mother Nature is telling us to eat.  I'll keep you posted.

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