Wednesday, March 5, 2008

I'm Baaaaaaaaaack!

So we've been busy enjoying the joys of parenthood and neglecting most of the non-family related activities in our life for a while now. However, I received an e-mail from a nice fella (Thanks Chris!) the other day who reminded me that I had a blog and that is was horribly out of date. Mea culpa, mea culpa. Apologies aside, I just wanted to get a quick post in to get the ball rolling again.

First order of business is urban gardening. Have you seen the price of food in your local grocery store lately? Unbelievable. Shouldn't come as a surprise to any of you folks who have been preaching the errors of relying on a petrochemical fueled, corporate agribusiness model of food supply. So what are you going to do about it? How about planting a garden? There are a multitude of innovative citizens who have come up with any number of novel ideas to maximize gardening space and food production in their regular old urban lots and you can too. At our place, we've got five 4' x 8' raised beds, twelve apple trees just planted using the Belgian Fence espalier method, and as usual, we'll be squeezing whatever won't fit in the raised beds into any little sunny spot we can find in the yard. And this is all happening on a five thousand sq. foot urban lot. Need more inspiration? Check these folks out from the Dervaes Institute! They've turned their standard, urban lot into an income producing farm and doing it in ways that you have to see to believe.

Along the same lines, read about how our federal government is making it harder for small farmers who want to supply their communities with good, safe food in this NY Times article written by Jack Hedin, a small, organic farmer from Minnesota.

My Forbidden Fruits (and Vegetables)

On a parting note, I'd like to throw my two cents in on the subject of bio fuel. I know it's a big, complicated issue, so I'll keep it short. Converting productive farmland to growing gasoline isn't doing a damn thing to improve the security of our national food system. In fact, it's quite the opposite. I wonder if they'll label the gas pumps with "Genetically Modified" stickers? I'm holding my breath waiting for the first Powered by Monsanto eco-vehicle to roll off the line in Detroit.

Alright, enough bitching and moaning. Now get out there and play in the dirt, support your local farmers, tell your local politicians to support initiatives that will preserve local farms, and don't let your neighbor with the F350 convince you that he's doing anyone any favors by filling that hog with bio diesel to get to the McBurger joint...

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