the TAO of CHANGE

a boots-on-the-ground view of the change that's a-foot

by Tao, Carrboro

Did you know that in acres, LAWNS are the largest “crop” in America?? They use up to 800 million gallons of gas to mow – carbon emissions included – and I don’t even want to think about the amount of water used in irrigating something that we just look at.

Grass is not so “green” in my town. Instead, there’s a strong initiative supporting and encouraging backyard – or frontyard – “farming”. The 2nd Annual Urban Farm Tour happened this past Saturday, hosted by Carrboro Greenspace Collective, a grassroots group promoting Community and Sustainability. The Tour left from downtown, via bicycles, and stopped at 15 sites, some keeping bees or goats and all growing food in spaces no larger than an average backyard. (In 1940-something, it was called a “Victory Garden“.) The event included skill-shares workshops like composting, vegetable gardening and honey harvesting and concluded as the cool of evening arrived, with a potluck meal. I haven’t heard the final count this year, but last year, close to 300 people attended.

The ongoing intiatives of Carrboro Greenspace want to make sustainable and healthy practices – like Urban Farming and alternative transportation – more visible and accessible to everyone. They also believe that education will help us join forces for change, so regularly provide free viewing of documentary films at a downtown outdoor space, like the one I saw last night – Food Fight. A great complement to the Tour, the film describes how corporations have influenced and controlled our food sources and contributed to the decline of our health and environment. There was a good turn-out and local, Tom Philbott, Grist Food Editor, spoke afterwards.

(<<<My favorite Urban Tour Tee!)

A locally-grown lifestyle is the way to feed a healthy future. Be involved. Be aware. Be ready.

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  1. Jolly ROger Says:

    Hi.
    My mother-in-law has always had a small garden, growing squash, tomatoes, okra, beans, and always used traditional canning and preserving of fruits and vegetables. From simple freezing for strawberries, to breaking green beans, cooking, washing, sterilizing, packing, re-cooking, sealing, equals a whole days work. A bushel of beans yields about 20 qts. of beans. We made some fig preserves, from figs right from her tree. BUT, it is HARD work! And you’re using and re-using the glass mason jars every year.
    Besides gardening, these traditional storage skill are key to off-season fruits and vegs. You CAN get instructions fro books, especially Mother Earth News publications, but first-hand how-to is great. That “victory garden” generation is quickly disappearing. What we do have is access to best-use practices, fertilizer and pesticide awareness, and nutrition per crop.
    As always. WATER, is a KEY. We’ll get into the water thing later.

    Have a lush day

  2. phyllisdiehl Says:

    i went on this tour with you, i think it was a rainy day mud all around, i loved it. especially the farmers, who explained things, and seemed like they were “one” with their work, and their work was and is their passion….and as you know if you could achieve that. then life is really beautiful.

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