Good Bye to Pokeberry Hill...


Friday, August 15, 2008

How Much Can You Grow in a City Backyard?

My crazy producting 5 tomato plants have got me thinking more and more about how much I could be growing if I wanted to. Other things along the way have been pointing in a direction, like Moti Rieber's post on Food Principles a couple weeks back at his Jewish Simplicity Blog. Also-- I read an article months and months ago about a couple who happen to live in my area that have a 'farm' basically in their normal size city backyard. What's funny is yesterday I got an email from the wife inviting me to come visit and have a talk with her about growing organic. The lady I had talked to about possibly becoming a vendor at the Southend Tailgate Farmer's Market here in South Charlotte forwarded my emails to her and so she invited me to come. I hope to do that this weekend. Another funny things is I've been getting more and more books on subjects like Food Politics, heirloom tomatoes, and yesterday I picked up "Animal, Vegetable, Miracle" to bring home and read. (I love working in a library).

To make a long story short--though I may not completely share all the politics and beliefs involved in the Urban Sustainable/Eat Local/Grow Organic/etc.. movement, I am getting more and more interested and drawn toward learning more and trying more things. I am interested in finding out how my organic neighbor handles the fire ants for sure--I would really like to know!

So much of what is said about eating local does make alot of sense. For me--just the idea that when I had my garden in our last neighborhood before moving to this house--the neighborhood kids had never seen a real garden.

They would all come over and want to help me. I gave them little hummingbird feeders and a book about birds when I realized they could only identify ONE bird species--the Cardinal-- and only really becuause the teachers at school had told them it was the state bird. I thought--wow--kids really need to learn more about the world they live in. That was a thing that struck me. I think the thing was--nobody had time to show them anything. Everyone seems to be gone away at jobs all the time and kids are shifted from program to program. I didn't raise my own that way, but funny-- I think some of them think they missed out. Sigh.. makes me scratch my head that thought.. but kids take what they will from childhood and there's no accounting sometimes for how that works.

Anyhow, this weekend I have plans--I just hope I'm not too pooped to carry them through. I want to visit the tailgate market Saturday and hope to then visit my neighbor, one of the vendors there Sunday.

I'm a little worried about being pooped cuz work has been a bit tiring the past few days. Our computers were upgraded--which means 'down' for several days. When that happens in a library it means books cannot be checked in. If they can't be checked in--they can't be shelved. They sit in whatever space you can find in piles waiting for the computers. Well the computers are up--so we are doing several days worth of checking in and shelfing in a busy branch all at once. Its physically hard work. I worked til 9 last night and start at 9 this morning--and yup--I'm tired.

Through the past year plus my goal has been to go from part time to full time at the library--part of me though keeps wondering if I really want to do that. That part thinks--maybe part time is enough if I can find another source of income to add to it--something related to home. Gardening and crafting of course come to mind for me in a natural way, also some means of making money online-- these are interests of mine. My main motivation for making more money inspite of the fact that hubby does provide ok is that we lost all our progress toward retirement when he was out of work, along with short selling our home and having our vehicle repo'd we went into debt. We need to find a way to own a home again--but without more debt. That is our goal. We want to do it before we retire--which for me is probably about 10 or 15 years tops. For him just a little longer if we're both lucky. No telling what could happen in those years--one of us could die or become ill. It happens. My own dad died of cancer when he was only 7 years older than me--and he had been perfectly healthy before that. My grandfater died at the same age from heart disease. I'm therefore motivated to get our eggs into as big of a basket as possible so when the next wave of troubles hit us at least we will have a place to live that we can keep.

Anyhow--so lately I am thinking--what if I worked part time in the library and was a vendor at the local farmers market--selling things I grow and things I craft--and what if maybe I could also do something with a website? Who knows.. Maybe there are more ways than one to earn more money--maybe I can spend my strength at home instead of only in the library? I'm thinking these thoughts are a little bit past the beginning stage but not yet in cement firm thoughts. I'm still exploring. It will be interesting to see where it all leads me. Will Pokeberry become a farm? An urban rented farm? hmmm...

1 comment:

  1. Hi, I just wanted to say "Hello" from a fellow Charlottean. I've just started a blog devoted to local and seasonal (I just call it sustainable) eating. I've started a "Farmer's Market Report" Mr. Linky. While the idea is for bloggers to report on what they purchase at a farmer's market - it might be interesting to hear a farmer's market report from the faremer's side!

    you can come check out this weeks':