With activity around the HUGS garden growing, I wanted to invite some of our most active gardeners to come to the Ecology Action Centre and start some of the seeds that they will later transplant into their garden. Earlier in March I sat down with some gardeners and local residents of the Bayers Westwood community to discuss what they would like to see grown in the garden this year.
Many residents home of origin is not in Canada, and as a result, there are many things that aren’t commonly grown here in Nova Scotia that our gardeners love to grow and eat. So on an similarly cruddy day to this one, a small band of avid gardeners scoured through seed catalogues looking for things we’d like to grow. Some things spoke to home, others were just wacky, and looked like fun. Some of the highlights on our list were Asian Eggplant, Yard Beans, Romanesco Cauliflower, Okra, Purple Brocoli and some common favourites as well.
We recently acquired a large 3 tier grow shelf, and I was anxious to use it. So we piled six gardeners into a CarShare van and headed to the centre. We prepared our own potting mix and went through the basics a seed-starting before we started. Then as though a gun was fired at the starting line, our fiery friends were tearing into seed packets and planting with abandon. Despite the cool conditions in our basement, things are germinating and I have hope they’ll persevere.
For the Our Food Project, this type of activity is important to connect to the source of their foods. We quite literally involve our partners from seed to plate, through seed starting, gardening, seasonal cooking, and yes, eating.
Author: Will Hill. Community Food Programmer, The Our Food Project, Ecology Action Centre.