Saturday, June 28, 2008


Things have changed quickly to go from bloody freezing to hot as hell. In response I have been trying to water at least every second day and do that as late in the evening as possible to stop wasteful evaporation.

Last week I had lots of little helpers in the form of a horde of kids from the adjoining playground. As I opened the lock, three crowded round me begging to be allowed to water. Typical inner-city kids, they didn't know their plants (Btw, why is it that everything vaguely tall is always a "sunflower"? Today toxicfingers confused garlic with one.) Foolishly I didn't lock the gate after us, only to find the crowd suddenly swell to nine. They were a bit boisterous and overexcited - as I would have been at that age on a hot day with a waterhose - but thankfully they didn't trash the place too much and kept their fingers mostly away from the tempting strawberries in the neighbouring plots.

All this has kept me thinking about the community involvement in this garden - the plot "owners" are mainly white middle-class and middle-aged right smack-bam in the middle of a predominantly young Black and Latino area. It's also very interesting that there is a different garden not too far run by Seeds of Harmony which appears to be much more mixed in terms of ages, ethnicities, etc. And their garden looks much better. I wonder where Parks and Recreation is going wrong... maybe they should just give a plot to the horde of kids - I swear it would be the best-watered plot in the whole garden. And maybe some of them may even learn the difference between a sunflower and a tomato.

The obligatory pictures of plot progress follow. As it was already getting dark after watering they may look a bit strange. Everything is doing fine so far but lots of plants are bolting and going to seed, as expected in this hot weather.

I planted another cucumber and pepper plant. Beans are doing fine although something is eating them. If you squint you can see some carrots sprouting between the broccoli and the peppers.

Someof the collard is still recovering from being covered up.

Zucchini and patty pan squash going through a growth spurt. Just slightly concerned about the mottled-looking leaves of the zucchini - feature of the plant or first signs of mosaic virus?

The sweetcorn. I bet it feels lonely. Sigh. Maybe I should get it some companions.

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