Friday, March 20, 2009

eleanor roosevelt's dress

Spring is happening in zomba. The trees have lost their red hazy mist and are now infused with a yellow red hazy mist. A bit of warmth and moisture, and leaves will be popping out. Our cherry trees are almost there. Dandelions are getting to edible size at last. Crocuses are spilling gold and purple among the greening grass and the slowly decomposing fallen leaves.

There's a patch of creeping charlie that grew last year in with the garlic mustard. I can smell the garlic mustard, but I can't find it as the two plants look fairly similar at this stage. We apparently overate the garlic mustard last year! Do we let the remains of this invasive exotic go to seed, continuing our free food, vestiges of the garden of eden? Shall we consider eating garlic mustard a more proficient means of extermination than round-up?

The south lawn garden gets in more recognizable order each nice working day. Today, I cut potatoes for seed, and after a couple of days of scabbing over, we'll plant those (have more still sitting around sprouting). I've wanted to try growing potatoes under layers of straw, and since we have a couple of straw bales, I will. I've gotten several tomato cages in place, with peas planted around them, and onions planted around that. So far, I've planted about 80 onions, and I have two more bags of sets (Humphreys!) to plant. Even if I get them all planted, that's barely enough to cover our yearly onion needs. When you really start to think about feeding yourself, it gets intimidating.

I transplanted the last tray of sprouts, some cabbage, broccoli, and rhubarb, but the vast majority is heirloom peppers and tomatoes. These are now sunning themselves and putting on additional leaves in our sunny south window. I planted another tray of seeds to sprout, mostly herbs, plus tomatoes and peppers I received from Baker Creek (more!!). Our perennial investment order is ready to be mailed off: three blueberries, four hazelnuts, two chestnuts, five elderberries, a pink seedless grapevine for Kaleigh, and my splurge order of a dwarf lime because I like how they look and smell (my pleasant greenhouse worker memories, plus you can never be too prepared for climate change).

I met today with members of the Springfield local food task force. It's exciting to think that my actions are hopefully going to create change, yet I know we are attempting to create change from the top down, and it's not an arena I particularly enjoy or have faith in. At the same time, it seems necessary to remove legal barriers for people to be able to provide for their basic needs. A city that encourages its citizens to provide for themselves is secure, and more easily copes and adapts to chaos.

The Zion Missionary church down the street is moving ahead with its plans to plant a garden to provide fresh, local, and nutritious organic food to patrons of their food pantry. This is exciting to see happen in my own neighborhood, and I am delighted to be a part of it.

A few days ago, Justin gave his talk on bioremediation, notes available here. It was a great talk, and I learned a lot about removing toxins from soil, and also about the hovering umbrella of greed that corporations have legally enforced. Not only is it their products and services that put the toxins in the soil in the first place, but now they've patented a lot of hyperaccumulator plants. So if you want to plant soil amending plants, you'll need to pay them for the patent to do it. It's not that the plants been genetically modified or altered in any way; they're just plants. It's ridiculous.

Corporations need to have less control over us people. They need to be responsible and accountable to someone, it would seem. And why not us? We have to pay the price for their stupidity, short-sightedness, and inevitable destruction. (I am not a Communist.)

Kaleigh's been reading like crazy lately, devouring a dozen chapter books in a week, at least. She's been rabid about bike rides. She really wanted to ride in the critical mass tonight. Sometime, maybe next month! It's a little cold out, and we adults are pretty tired out tonight.


No comments: