Sunday, January 17, 2010

Gardening (for food) in the town

(Bundoora Park Community Garden, Bundoora, Victoria)

It's been great to see a revival and growth in Urban food production, which is apparrently becoming hugely popular in Australia, UK and the USA. To grow your own food is now considdered to be cool... (Common practice in most other places)
A couple of years ago I discovered the Life Island website after viewing an amazing video about the Manor Gardens in Hackney, UK. At the time they were fighting to protect their 100 year old garden allotments from being leveled to make way for a sporting complex for the Olympic games... Sadly they lost the battle and the whole site has since been completely cleared! But! I will be very difficult to rebuild the sense of community that appeared to have existed in that special place and I was really saddened when I learned about the garden's demise.

Somewhere in my trawling of the internet I discovered that there was a cookbook produced with photos of the people and their special places in the Manor Garden. The Book is called Moro East.
I managed to order a copy of it online and it was delivered toward the end of last year. It's a wonderful book full of very rustic recipies and images, the cover features some beautiful Islamic art.

(Moro East Cookbook by Sam and Sam Clark)

It may be idealism or escapism but this stuff really inspires me. The book is wonderful and I like just flicking through the pages.

Sliver Gardening

Back at home our little garden is providing shade and green where once there was only the blinding glare and heat of too much concrete ... We've eaten a delicious pumpkin, snake beans, heaps of basil and enjoyed Lemongrass tea. We only harvest food occasionally but the aesthetic value of a food garden makes enormous improvements to our peace of mind regardless of limmited crops.

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