Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Awareness of Growth

Having an awareness of the amount of knowledge, time and energy it takes to grow the food we consume is essential and makes me appreciate every bite that much more. From the delectably sweet strawberries to the bitter dandelion greens. The Seeds at City Urban Farm has become much more to me than just learning how to grow food. The farm is improving environmental pollution where we live and breathe by removing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and fixing it as beneficial organic matter in the soil. The elimination of pesticides, herbicides and chemical fertilizers is reducing the leaching of these carcinogenic substances into our waterways and our need for fossil fuels. These are only a couple of the many improvements sustainable, organic farming contributes to our ecosystem, not to mention the incredible health benefits from eating organic. The farm has been even more enlightening on a deeper personal level.

John Jeavons, a renown grower, said “Gardening is an education in observation, harmony, honesty, and humility – in knowing and understanding our place in the world.” It is a constant teacher of life lessons and reminder of simple yet very valuable truths. There is a great sense of accomplishment I receive from working with my hands and building a new planting bed; sowing the seeds of life. Watching how a tiny seed transforms into a beautiful plant capable of nourishing the mind, body and soul. The realizations that everything is alive on some level and with the right mixture amazing things can happen. A sense of nature evolves that connects one to the same energy that creates every one of us and our world.

We have the chance to partner up with the earth and work with positive life forces that grow not only veggies, but our perceptions and values. We can let the plants guide us to grow all aspects of our lives. Knowing that to grow you have to stretch and reach for light even if there's the possibility you can get blown down. Following the plants lead to forget the past and grow twice the branches right after getting cut down. Recognizing that any chance to grow should be taken advantage of in order to thrive. And like the glorious greens surrounding you on the farm, growth can take place in any direction and it all starts by planting the seed. One wise grower once told me (Paul, a Seeds at City Farm Manager), "patience...some people just take a little longer." Something an experienced gardener has come to realize from many years of service to the soil.

Improving the world one garden at time. Come to the farm and experience these invaluable lessons for yourself.

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