September 2009


I recommend a couple of videos that I think are really inspiring for gardeners and farmers to grow our food in harmony with nature. They’re both from a site called Ted.com which features lots of really informative talks about science, technology, creativity, brains, art…

Eduardo Sousa and his Geese

Eduardo Sousa and his Geese

The first talk is by a chef named Dan Barber. It’s all about a Spanish farmer named Eduardo Sousa. Sousa produces foie gras (French for “fat liver”)  a substance that I was unfamiliar with until I heard this talk. Foie gras a delicacy made from goose liver. Sousa farms in such a natural way that wild geese come to stay and live with his domesticated geese. The talk is about permaculture, slow food, history, and the joy of great food as the “expression of nature.” Barber’s excellent talk includes a quote I really liked – from Jonas Salk: “If all the insects disappear, life on earth as we know it would disappear within fifty years. If human beings disappeared, life on earth as we know it would flourish.”  

The second talk is  by Michael Pollan, who should be familiar with readers of this blog from this earlier post. His talk is sort of a  whirlwind tour of many of the themes his book The Botany of Desire. He suggests that we could see much of humanity as a vast conspiracy of “corn’s scheme for world domination.” The talk concludes with a great profile of Joel Salatin’s permaculture farm in Virginia which is “well beyond organic agriculture.” 

Don’t spend tooooo much time on Ted.com, but check out these two talks, and let them inspire you to get out and garden!

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Can you spot the lizard?

Can you spot the lizard?

Above is a cell phone shot of a lizard I just spotted in the garden a couple minutes ago. It’s not a great photo of the critter but I was worried that if I got any closer she/he would dart off.

I’ve heard that lizards are good for gardens. They eat insects, and don’t really damage any of the plants. They like things a little messy, though. If one keeps one’s garden too neat, the lizards will go elsewhere.

Yesterday, I found the corner of the southern bulb-out raised garden bed looking like this:

before

before

In a few seconds I fixed it back to how it had been. Then it looked like this:

after

after

The visitor in this case, appears to have been one of those cars… One of the creatures that I don’t really like visiting my garden. I will try to avoid what has been called my obligatory shot at car culture and will just say that it’s easy to rebuilt these urbanite beds when  they come apart.