The ‘Chocolate Cherry’ sunflowers I am growing on the roof are just starting to produce flower heads and we are waiting with bated breath hoping they get a chance to open before those rascally raccoons figure them for something tasty or worth shredding to bits. I’ll be sure to take more photos if they make it that far.
I’m very proud to have co-produced the cover photograph for the Brooklyn Botanic Garden’s “Community Gardening” guide alongside my partner Davin Risk. Yep, that’s my soiled hand and a bouquet of sage held up at our own Parkdale Community Beer Garden. There are four varieties of sage in that photo which I continue to harvest in droves this year.
But I digress. You might be familar with the Brooklyn Botanic’s guides on a whole host of gardening topics from growing natives to food gardening. This latest guide provides a closer look at the ins and out of community gardening, including hands-on tips for getting started and a case study section profiling several inspiring urban gardens.
If you’re looking to start a community garden but don’t know where to begin I would also suggest “How Does Our Garden Grow? A Guide to Community Garden Success” written by Laura Berman and published by Foodshare.
My friends and I stood on the roof the other night watching a pair of young raccoons climb around and perform all kinds of amazing acrobatics on the building next door. I kept reminding them that we needed to scare the raccoons off not encourage them since I am now positive these two are the culprits that have been gorging on my ripe tomatoes every night for the last week. I threw a hot pepper in the general direction of this one, thinking that would somehow deter it (?) Instead it started playing with the pepper, rolling onto its back and passing the pepper between its paws. Everyone thought that was very adorable and funny. I just kept thinking about my tomatoes. Sure enough, more were missing that next morning!
Screw those friends. There will not be any tomato sauce for them this year!
Remember when I helped my brother make a container garden on his balcony? Behold, it LIVES!
He’s done really, really well for someone with almost no interest in gardening only a few months ago. I was concerned that I had overwhelmed him with plants through my own enthusiasm and that he wouldn’t be able to go from zero to a hundred like that overnight but he pulled it off and is obviously invested in keeping things alive. Sure, he never did get around to repotting the basil but the fact that they’re not dead yet considering those horribly undersized containers means he is caring for them. He is watering the garden every morning, the tomato is making tomatoes, the peppers are growing lots of peppers, and the herbs look really good.
He loves those herbs. I’d say they are by far his favourite part of the experience based on how much he goes on and on about all the great meals he has made from them. He even has a little stool that he brings outdoors to perch on when harvesting for a meal.
I am crazy proud! It’s almost embarrassing to admit to how much delight I am taking in this. I can’t wait to see how it all unfolds next spring.