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January 31, 2009

White House Vegetable Garden

Obama should start a very public White House vegetable garden. I am seeing this idea springing up in more and more places. TransFARM the White House Lawn :: An Organic Garden for the White House,
Two Peace Corps volunteers decided to write a letter to Obama and suggest that he establish an organic “Hope Garden” at the White House, and of course hire them to manage it.
They are part of a growing movement of advocates for a White House vegetable garden, and why not? The Obama family will have a bigger lawn than most of us, they like vegetables, and we all should be planting a little bit to eat local and eat healthy.

Go read their letter.

Here are some other sites advocating a White House garden:

January 24, 2009

New Home Buyers Want To Grow Food

From the story, Say goodbye to McMansions, homes are getting 'right-sized',
According to the Better Homes and Gardens study, top priorities in a new home include an affordable price, natural light and comfortable family gathering places. The era of super-sizing may be ending, Butler said, with buyers looking for a home that is "right-sized, organized and economized."
. . .
  • Green elements. Ninety percent of those who participated in the Better Homes and Gardens survey said they're planning to have energy-efficient heating and cooling systems in their next home and 31% plan to have geo-thermal heat, Butler said. There has also been increased interest in home gardens, with more people wanting to know where their food is grown, said Robin Avni, senior director and consumer strategist for the firm Iconoculture, a cultural trend research firm. "The green theme touches everything in the home, from the food we look to consume, our health concerns in the home, building -- even our furnishings in the home," Avni said. (emphasis added)

January 23, 2009

Support Local Farmers

Go sign the pledge: Sustainable Food - Support Local Farmers

January 16, 2009

A Vegetable Garden at the White House

Alice Waters of Chez Panisse has written an open letter to Barack Obama, asking for a garden at the White House as an example. You can read it at Alice Waters's Open Letter to the Obamas: Food Politics. Here is an excerpt,
Of course, I cannot forget the vision I have had since 1993 of a beautiful vegetable garden on the White House lawn. It would demonstrate to the nation and to the world our priority of stewardship of the land—a true victory garden!

January 12, 2009

Gardening and Health

Gardening gives elders a harvest of health,

Gardening helps older men and women reap more than flowers, fruits, and vegetables -- it benefits them physically as well, researchers report. In a small study, 14 gardeners between 63 and 86 years old reported an average of 33 hours of gardening during a typical week in May, and 15 hours each week during June and July.

January 11, 2009

Sunday Garden

The sign on the left says, "Sage."

January 9, 2009

Urban Homesteader

Dave wrote a post at Smelling the Coffee that quoted an article titled How You Can Start a Farm in Heart of the City. I read that article and it inspired me to write, and gave the inspiration for this new blog.

The article talked about exactly what I am -- an urban homesteader. This paragraph is me:

Before you start thinking that you have to move somewhere else to grow your own food, take another look around. With a couple of notable exceptions, American cities sprawl. They are full of wasted space. As a homesteader, you will begin to see any open space as a place to grow food. This includes front yards as well as backyards, vacant lots, parkways, alleyways, patios, balconies, window boxes, fire escapes and rooftops. Once you break out of the mental box that makes you imagine a vegetable garden as a fenced-off parcel of land with a scarecrow in it, you'll start to see the possibilities. Think jungle, not prairie. The truth is that you can grow a hell of a lot of food on a small amount of real estate. You can grow food whether you're in an apartment or a house, whether you rent or own.

Do you have 4' ? 8' feet of open ground? If you don't have a yard, do you have room on a patio or balcony for two or three plastic storage tubs? If you don't have that, then you could get a space in a community garden, a relative or neighbor's house, or become a pirate gardener, or an expert forager -- some of the tastiest greens and berries are wild and free for the taking.

I do exactly what this says. I look around at every available space and wonder why there is nothing growing on it. The concrete triangle of wasted space at the beginning of the street I live on upsets me because there is nothing on it – just concrete. If we owned the house? The grass would be gone bye bye IMMEDIATELY and fruit and veggies would be there. That is why I keep saying I could not live in an apartment and when we move it has to be somewhere with a garden or space for one.

-- Sudeep

Welcome to Growing the Garden

This is a blog about gardening, with a focus on urban/suburban and community gardening.

Have you ever tasted a fresh, ripe tomato that you grew yourself?

Fresh vegetables and fruits can fill our bellies, while the beauty of flowers and shrubs can fill the soul. Towns tend to be ugly and unproductive, with grass lawns sucking up valuable water resources giving nothing back but a high utility bill.

Imagine a new urban landscape with front yards bursting with succulent tomatoes, and apples falling from the trees. Imagine acres of grass wastelands turned into productive, attractive fruit and vegetable gardens. Imagine little community gardens tucked into nooks and crannies, roofs and backyards. Imagine little walkways constructed over busy roads so that gardeners with wheel barrows have safe access to freeway cloverleaf interiors and road intersection medians. That is the world I want to live in, and this blog is to help get to that goal - one garden at a time.

If you want to contact us please send email to info -at-