Wednesday, June 8, 2011

In support of community gardens

Didn't seem like much. Just two acquaintances who decided to form an alliance and grow vegetables in the same raised bed.

But since January of this year, when a fellow plant-lover and I started a community garden in our homeowner's association, I have had a great time and I've learned so much from him.

His one tomato plant has been a star, pumping out huge fruit for months, while 3 feet away my three plants have *ahem* produced some fruit. What's his secret? He pruned back a good portion of the foliage and didn't let the plants go all leafy. My plants are too vegetative; his plant's energy went to the fruit.

He turned me on to delicious banana peppers, which I plan to grow every year.

I was simply blown over (with admiration) by his guff ... he planted 5 or 6 raised beds at the other end of our community ... without permission from the HOA. His response: "It looked so ugly over there. This looks better." No argument from me. And the HOA retroactively approved it!

Always happy, always had a great outlook on life. Definitely an attitude to emulate.

Community gardens are the best way to meet people who share a love for horticulture -- even if it's just one cool dude. I'll be sorry to leave the raised bed we started here when my family moves, but I hope it will be a way for others in the HOA to have the same social-gardening experience that I did.

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