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Friday, September 23, 2011

A Carousel of Progress

Though Walt Disney coined this fitting term to represent decades of American progress, it seems only appropriate for the transformation of our garden over the past week. This Friday, I sweated through my second shift in the Peace Patch, and I am already astounded at the beautiful work that our team has invested in our growing garden. With a hot cup of coffee to get me revved up and the morning sun just beginning to peak over Lakewood Elementary, the girls and I got straight to work with shovel and pail in hand.

The bulk of our energy was channeled through a couple big shovels as they sliced through the omnipresent thick grass roots in what will soon be our watermelon patch. This project will take a few days and many more hands, but we managed to fill a few wheel barrels with the pesky stuff. We also smoothed over some beds and planted seeds that will hopefully soon sprout into kale, pole beans, and a start to "the three sisters" - squash, corn, and beans. This garden plot will be of particular interest to me, as it represents a classic working permaculture system inspired by Native American subsistence technique.

Upon cupping the tiny seeds in my hand, I couldn't help but feel a bit skeptical. How can such a fragile little pebble of life transform into the leafy greens we envision blossoming from our beds? It requires so much care and diligence to protect, water, and weed the small seed's environment so that it has the chance to thrive as we hope. I can already tell that we have a team of very dedicated volunteers, though, and from what I've heard, the kids will pour their hearts into these plants as well. I can't wait to get to know them as we all progress through another season of gardening adventures!

 Carly Chaapel

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