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Girl Scouts in Garland enjoying the Garden

A Great, Crisp Saturday in Garland!

I saw bunch of people at the garden this afternoon as I drove by to the grocery store.  it looked like they were having a picnic at the turquoise table that the Good Samaritans recently donated.  On my way home, I stopped by to say hello.  Turns out it was a bunch of our local Girl Scouts having a picnic.  Our garden is so many things to so many people in our community.  People in the area during the week often stop down at the garden to eat their lunch.  We are lucky to have such a great Parks Department who work with us to keep the garden going.

Charlie and I got four cases of vegetables with pop top lids; seven boxes of crackers;  and10 packages of tuna for our thanksgiving contributions tomorrow.

We hope to see you at the garden tomorrow.  1-3 PM

 

 

We are inviting the public to join us in sharing food items with those who are having economic challenges this season. In addition to about 50 pounds of sweet potatoes from the garden as well as fresh greens, we will also be collecting food items at the garden on this day .  These items will be transported to the Good Samaritans on Monday, November 15.


If you wonder what to bring, here is a list of items that a friend of mine made after asking people at a food shelter what they needed.

LIST OF SUGGESTED DONATIONS--BUT MOST ANY FOOD ITEM IS WELCOME 

1. Powdered milk

2. Cans of food with pop top lid since some may not have a can opener

3. Cooking oil (small size)

4. Spices (especially those you get from takeout and don’t use)

5. Sugar

6. Fresh produce --especially fruit like apples and oranges

7. Canned fruit with pop top lids

8. Tuna (especially the kind that comes in individual packages)

9. Crackers

10. Butter and margarine

11. Stove top stuffing

12. Hamburger Helper

13. Dishwashing soap

14. Feminine hygiene products

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We are inviting the public to join us in sharing food items with those who are having economic challenges this season. In addition to about 50 pounds of sweet potatoes from the garden as well as fresh greens, we will also be collecting food items at the garden on this day .  These items will be transported to the Good Samaritans on Monday, November 15.


If you wonder what to bring, here is a list of items that a friend of mine made after asking people at a food shelter what they needed.

LIST OF SUGGESTED DONATIONS--BUT MOST ANY FOOD ITEM IS WELCOME 

1. Powdered milk

2. Cans of food with pop top lid since some may not have a can opener

3. Cooking oil (small size)

4. Spices (especially those you get from takeout and don’t use)

5. Sugar

6. Fresh produce --especially fruit like apples and oranges

7. Canned fruit with pop top lids

8. Tuna (especially the kind that comes in individual packages)

9. Crackers

10. Butter and margarine

11. Stove top stuffing

12. Hamburger Helper

13. Dishwashing soap

14. Feminine hygiene products

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Margie Rogers with a fake sweet potato root beard
Gunvant Patel (Pat) approves-- I think.

TIME FLIES!  REPORT FROM SWEET POTATO EVENT OCTOBER 24TH

It’s already been two weeks since our great Sweet Potato/Luffa Harvesting event!  We now have about fifty pounds of sweet potatoes curing, getting ready for Thanksgiving dinners.


A few of the people at the Sweet Potato Harvest taking it easy while the rest of us dig potatoes 

For those who may not know:  After pulling sweet potatoes out of the ground (usually around Halloween) you must not wash them or handle them roughly at that time.  Instead, simply lightly brush most of the soil off each potato with your hand and store in a dark dry warm place for at least two weeks. During this time the potato cures and much of its starch is converted to sugar. After this time, you can rinse the dirt off, dry and store for up to 4 to 7 months.

If you don’t cure the sweet potato, it will have almost no taste--quite similar to the Hawaiian dish of poi which is made from tubers.

 

We are inviting the public to join us in sharing food items with those who are having economic challenges this season. In addition to about 50 pounds of sweet potatoes from the garden as well as fresh greens, we will also be collecting food items at the garden on this day .  These items will be transported to the Good Samaritans on Monday, November 15.


If you wonder what to bring, here is a list of items that a friend of mine made after asking people at a food shelter what they needed.

LIST OF SUGGESTED DONATIONS--BUT MOST ANY FOOD ITEM IS WELCOME 

1. Powdered milk

2. Cans of food with pop top lid since some may not have a can opener

3. Cooking oil (small size)

4. Spices (especially those you get from takeout and don’t use)

5. Sugar

6. Fresh produce --especially fruit like apples and oranges

7. Canned fruit with pop top lids

8. Tuna (especially the kind that comes in individual packages)

9. Crackers

10. Butter and margarine

11. Stove top stuffing

12. Hamburger Helper

13. Dishwashing soap

14. Feminine hygiene products

Below is just part of our haul of sweet potatoes from the garden.  We have more but you can never have too many sweet potatoes for a Thanksgiving celebration so if you have some you want to donate, bring 'um on down!

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LOVING GARLAND GREEN DELIVERY TO GOOD SAMARITAN’S OF GARLAND.  

This morning Loving Garland Green donated fifty pounds of produce and canned goods to the Good Samaritans of Garland.  If we all share, even a little, we can ease the pain of hunger. Our Garland Community Garden has the somewhat un-chic messy look of a mid-fall garden in North Texas as the leaves are beginning to fall but it is still producing.  Our produce today included 8 one-quart bags of kale; 3 one-quart bags of green beans; 6 one-quart bags of various peppers; 3 one-quart bags of okra; 1 one-quart bag of carrots; 2 one-quart bags of basil; 1 one-gallon bag of spinach and chard.

Easing the pain of hunger for the homeless by donating even a little food on a weekly basis is helpful if you can afford it.  But there are other things we can do to ease the pain of the homeless.  One thing that just occurred to me today is that non-profit groups can make an effort to be more inclusive by specifically inviting the homeless to their events.  We often forget that the homeless are as much a part of our community as home owners and those who can still afford to support their landlord’s investments. For the homeless, the pain of being shunned and shut out by the community is no doubt almost as painful as hunger.

Thinking about what I could do as an individual and as the current president of Loving Garland Green, I decided that at least for the moment I could thank Pam and her team of volunteers for what they do and let them know what we care about them and their clients as well.

So, I wrote a note to them to thank them for the picnic table and for their contributions to our community.

 

I also left a reminder for them of our next Garland Community Garden event which is coming up this Sunday, October 24. 1PM to 3PM.  I added “homeless are welcome”.  [Like Hamlet, I debated the merits with myself--going back and forth on whether to add this note.  On the one hand the argument could be made that the note calls attend to the homeless being treated as a separate group from our community and the fact that they are so often excluded from everything community but charity and on the other hand, this is actually true so they might just assume they are not welcome.]  I’ve decided that at least for the time being it is best to be clear and make the extra effort to communicate the homeless are welcome.

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COME ONE COME ALL TO THE GARLAND COMMUNITY GARDEN

OCTOBER 24 FROM 1-3PM

Sweet Potato Harvest

And

Luffa Shucking

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Volunteers and clients at Good Samaritans of Garland helped us load the new addition for the Garden.

Today Charlie and I picked up a picnic table donated to the garden by the Good Samaritans of Garland and unloaded it at the garden.

Like most food banks across the Good Sam’s have really been taxed to the max.  The need for food has increased 600%.  Insane, isn’t it?   And the need continues to be pressing.

  

ABOUT THE TURQUOISE TABLE--the table that started a movement.

Kristin Schell of Austin wanted to connect with her neighbors and build friendships, so she put an ordinary picnic table in her front yard, painted it turquoise, and began inviting friends and neighbors to join her.  

Like many movements, the Turquoise Table movement had a serendipitous beginning. Kristin was planning an outdoor party and ordered an inexpensive picnic table from Lowe’s. The delivery guy unloaded it on her front lawn and asked her where she wanted it.  On a whim she kept in in the front yard. She slapped a can of turquoise paint on it and was soon was meeting many more of her neighbors. People are always curious and ask me, ‘Why do you have a turquoise table in your front yard?’ I tell them, ‘To meet people like you…’ And they just open up and sit down.”

It’s a throwback to another time of front porch sitting and conversations with people passing. “There’s something magical that happens when we take time to sit down face-to-face for conversation,” she said. “We all long for a place to belong, to connect in authentic and meaningful ways with one another.”  Turquoise Tables have become a movement. They are now registered in all 50 states.

 

A PARALLEL UNIVERSE IN GARLAND TEXAS - March 2013

While Kristin was having her front yard experience in 2013, I was also having mine about  213 miles to the north. I decided to dig up my lawn and plant a garden in my front yard. There is far too much shade from the trees in my back yard to grow anything. After about the third day of digging, people driving and walking by began to stop and ask questions.  It was amazing. I had lived there for 5 years and often was in my front yard--getting mail, mowing my lawn and trimming the shrubs.  No one had ever stopped once to chat.

Digging up one’s front yard lawn in the USA is far outside the world of status quo.  Front lawns are the most grown crop in the U.S. and you  can’t even eat them. Their primary purpose is cosmetic. The state of a homeowner’s lawn is important in relation to the owner’s status. They’re viewed as an indicator of socio-economic character, which translates into property- and resale values. Thus, a properly maintained lawn tells others you are a good neighbor. So, what are we to think of a person who digs up their front lawn or dares to put a turquoise picnic table on it?

Digging up one’s front yard and replacing it with an orchard and vegetable garden is as alien to Americans as a turquoise table on one’s front lawn. No wonder Kristin and I got visitors. People are curious.  Picnic tables belong in the back yard, not the front yard.  Gardens belong in the back yard, not the front yard.

Both Kristin and I were violating unspoken laws of the front lawn:  You keep it fertilized and mowed. You don’t put lawn furniture on it, and you certainly don’t dig it up.  Unlike Kristin, I was not trying to attract people, and yet they came anyway.  Before the end of the first week people walking by stopped to chat and ask me what I was doing. And during that first week a few people driving by in their cars stopped and got out to chat with me.

Of course, the main topic of our conversations was gardening. After about two weeks, I began keeping track of how many stopped.  By the time I finished near the end of May, 122  people had stopped to talk during that time.  It was also from these conversations that a core group was formed and we ended up establishing a Community Garden here in Garland on April 24, 2014.

THREE PATHS CROSS IN 2021

Somehow it seems fitting that the serendipitous journey of two women, living 213 miles apart who decided to repurpose their front yards in 2013 should be united by a turquoise picnic table. It was Pam Swendig, Executive Director of Good Samaritans of Garland  who tied the whole experience together. Pam is in charge of the operations of a non-profit food distribution service in Garland.  The Good Samaritans of Garland feed the homeless and the hungry in our community.  They operate out of an old refurbished residential home near downtown. We give several hundred pounds of food from our garden and pantries to Good Sam’s every year.

A while back, Pam decided to put a lot of turquoise picnic tables around the side of their facility for people to sit in the shade--particularly the homeless who have nowhere to go.  She may be hoping that these turquoise tables, like the one in the yard of Kristin Schell of Austin would attract people of the neighborhood walking by to stop and chat with the homeless.  I don’t know.  I do know that when people stop and take the time to actually talk with one another, magical things happen.

I’m thrilled that we now have one of these lovely tables in our garden. Thank you, Pam!  And I thank all the volunteers at the Good Samaritans of Garland for all the wonderful and selfless work that you do.  I fully expect the turquoise table you gave us to bring even more magic to our Garland Community Garden.



  

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Yes, It is official!  I am an okra fanatic.  We have 40 okra plants at the Garland Community Garden and I planted 25 of them.  Here are some facts about Okra in Texas:

1.  Even though the onion is our state vegetable, if I were queen, I would assign that honor to Okra for many reasons, not the least of which is because okra is far more nutritious than the onion.  But onions clearly make more money than Okra.  According to Aggie horticulture, ONIONS are Texas' leading vegetable crop. Onion sales bring the state between $70 and $100 million per year and the onion industry has an overall impact of about $350 million per year on the Texas economy. Most of the sweet yellow onions, which people all over the world enjoy because you can "eat them like an apple", can trace their origin to the Lone Star state.

However if nutrition and not profit are to be the guidelines, Okra wins hands down and it’s much easier to grow than onions or tomatoes.

2.  Every part of the Okra plant is edible--the leaves, flowers and the pods of the Okra plant. If you want to derive full nutritional value from almost any vegetable, eat it raw.  Now picture this at your next Texas barbecue:  You serve them a green salad made with okra leaves, chopped okra pods and garnished with okra flowers.

 

3.  Okra can be eaten raw, fried, or boiled.  It can easily be preserved by slicing and freezing.

Admittedly, getting a Texan to eat a raw okra pod might have a difficulty level approaching that of trying to get a Baptist to genuflect but it can be done as I’m living proof that a real Texan can be convinced to eat a raw okra pod.  I did and they are delicious--crunchy and good.  I also tried an okra leaf  today and they are at least as tasty as lettuce.  I have yet to devour a blossom but that adventure will come soon.  There is just something about eating a flower that seems dangerously close to being a cannibal.

 

4. Okra  produces well and even thrives in poor soil and even under drought conditions.  You don’t have to baby it.  You don’t need a vegetable garden to grow it. You can grow it in 5-gallon pots.  It’s OK if you forget to water it for days in a row.  It’s OK if you forget to cut it for a few days as you can dry out the too-large-to-eat fibrous pods and paint them for Christmas ornaments.  Okra is the most forgiving vegetable that I know.

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IN THE BUTTERNUT SQUASH PLOT AT THE GARLAND COMMUNITY GARDEN

Carl Hunt’s weekly compost donation is responsible for three plants and about 30 butternut squashes this spring and early summer.  And, seeds from one of the 3o squashes has this fall produced 36 plants that may in turn produce 360 butternut squashes in our fall garden at the Garland Community Garden

 

Seeds Are the Basic Building Block for all Life and the Garden is the best place to learn and appreciate their value. 

What we do matters very much and our actions, like planted seeds, often grow larger than we may ever realize.  Sometimes, however, we are lucky enough to see the influence of another and tell them of our appreciation.  Today was such a day for me.

Carl Hunt has been coming down to the Garland Community once a week for at least the past three years to bring his weekly spent vegetables and coffee grounds for our compost.  It’s a  small amount.  Most would not bother. 

Then one day last spring several of us noticed what we thought was a pumpkin vine growing out of the compost box where Carl deposits his compost.  Several of us took the sprouts and transplanted them elsewhere in the garden.  I believe there were three vines in all, but I kept track of one of the vine’s produce.  From that one vine I counted 10 butternut squashes.  There may have been more, but there were at least 10 from that one vine.

During the first week in September, I planted some seeds from one of these squashes from that vine.  Thirty-six plants germinated.  I have transplanted 10 of these to various beds in the garden and will thin out about 10 more from the 26 remaining.  If all 36 plants live and produce 10 squashes each, that will be a total of 360 squashes from the seed of one squash that originated from Carl’s compost.

Today I just happened to be in the garden watering when Carl came down with the weekly compost from his kitchen.  I asked him if he ate butternut squash and thus brought the rinds and seeds with his compost to the garden. He told me that indeed he often purchased butternut squash from Whole Foods and brought their remains to the garden.

I told him the Butternut Squash story;  His compost has literally given our garden 30 butternut squashes and now 36 butternut squash plants that have the very real potential of yielding 360 more butternut squashes. 

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Butternut squash (Cucurbita moschata), known in Australia and New Zealand as butternut pumpkin or gramma, is a type of pumpkin or winter squash that grows on a vine. It has a sweet, nutty taste similar to that of a pumpkin. It has tan-yellow skin and orange fleshy pulp with a compartment of seeds in the blossom end. When ripe, it turns increasingly deep orange, and becomes sweeter and richer.

Yes, seeds and people are powerful forces! Multiply 360 squashes times 2 cups  (average yield from one squash) and you get 720 servings of the following nutrition:

One cup = 82 calories; 22 grams of carbs; 2 grams protein; 457% daily requirement for Vitamin A [Vitamin A is essential for regulating cell growth, eye health, bone health, and immune function]; 52% daily requirement for Vitamin C.

THANK YOU CARL!

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Gifts under the Tree in September?

Yes, if it's a pecan tree in the Garland Community garden.

When Charlie and I went down to water the garden yesterday, what to our wondering eyes under one of the large pecan trees should appear was not a sleigh with eight tiny reindeer but two lovely wire mesh chairs, a matching table and a vintage wooden box--left by whom we don't know, but that doesn't stop us from saying thank you.  THANK YOU.


The Vintage Wooden Box Found a Use

It is now home to four Collard Green plants.  The bottom of the box is very thin wood that was also cracked in places, unsuitable for carrying things so we made it into a planter and placed in in our Children’s Garden area.

 

Thinking about the Garland Community Garden and Garland People: “Keep the Garland Community Garden Weird”

Charlie and I had to test the chairs and yes, we can attest to their ability to bear weight and comfort.  As we sat there, surrounded by the garden all around us, I thought about how our garden should borrow from an Austin moniker and pronounce:  “Keep the Garland Community Garden Weird.”  As far as community gardens go, our garden is weird.  We have few requirements for our beds except that we recommend they are accessible to the gardener from all sides and that from at least one side you can reach to the middle of the bed without stepping into the bed.  People can put wood around their beds or not.  You can even have pots for your garden plot if you like.  Our mission is to encourage people to grow some of the food they eat.

In addition to our general lack of uniformity, our garden is open to visitors (with same hours as our Garland Parks) and many people visit our garden to walk around and also just to sit under the shade of a pecan tree. One man I know comes there at least once a week to eat his lunch.  It is very comforting to be around trees that are older than you are.  Most community gardens have strict bed requirements and no shade.  Many  of them are gated and access is only allowed to members.  Our garden has no fences (except the small ones to keep rabbits out).  Yes, we want to keep our Garland Community Garden weird and inviting--a place where people can come to and remember who they really, a place with soul for connecting with real life and growing things.

 

 

I am now a modified version of Elmer Fudd and Mr. McGregor

In addition to watering yesterday, I was also beginning my first battle in 7 years with critters in the garden. I came armed with 25 feet of chicken wire. some 3 ft rebar and tie-wraps along with Broccoli and Collard Green plants.  [I don’t go in for the violent solutions of Fudd and McGregor.]  The broccoli patch is now secure with 20 broccoli plants.

I don’t mind sharing with rabbits, but like some people, they don’t know when to stop.  Two weeks ago, I planted 12 broccoli transplants.   They left 4 plants.  The other eight  plants are nothing but a stem.  Raccoons are much more reasonable.  A few years ago, I planted a lot of corn that yielded 50 ears.  Raccoons got 10 of them.

 

Seed from Seeds ‘n Such finally arrived!

You may recall a few weeks ago I planted two metal beds with seeds I had gotten from Johnny’s Seeds. (The beds were also a gift left by another unknown community Santa Claus).  They are now seedlings that are almost ready for thinning.  Yesterday the other seeds arrived.  I’ll plant them today to finish the crop planting for these two beds.  The Komatsuna (Japanese Mustard Spinach) is of particular interest to me.  Mustard grows really well in North Texas, but it has very strong taste so a little of it goes a long way.  Komatsuna Mustard Spinach supposed to taste like Spinach with a zest of mustard. If this is true and if it grows as well as mustard does in North Texas, it will be great.

Speaking of seeds, at our fall festival for gardeners last Sunday, Pam Swendig, Executive Director of Good Samaritan of Garland, stopped by with a large box of seed packets.  I’ll be finding a good home for some of them in the Garden as I’m sure the folks will who attended our event.  Thank you Pam!  We appreciate all that you and the Good Sam volunteers do for the homeless in our community.  If you have time on your hands, join the volunteers at the Good Samaritans of Garland and tell that I sent you.

 

 

 

 

 

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GARDENS AND PARKS ARE ESPECIALLY ESSENTIAL FOR HEALTHY URBAN LIVING

Unfortunately it seems that many of our city parks in the USA put too much emphasis on fields for aggressive sports activities and not enough emphasis on nature and the importance of growing things which teach the values of patience, humility and respect and awe for the natural world.  Fortunately for us in Garland we have several parks that combine both and even a few that seem entirely devoted to nature and family gatherings. And of course, we have the great Garland Community Garden.

If you live in Texas and you really love gardens, of course you should visit the Garland, Texas Community Garden--a garden that I founded in 2013 with a few good friends. It is a unique garden for many reasons.  It has all the usual  edibles found in a community garden--tomatoes, okra, broccoli, etc.  It also has many drought-tolerant plants native to other places in the world that happen to grow well in Texas with little care such as  Cardoon, jujube and Amaranth.  We also have ancient plants such as Teosinte, the mother of modern-day corn which began its history in Central America centuries ago as well as various native plants that once graced our Blackland Prairie such as inland sea oats.

Gardens are wonderful sanctuaries where people can regain peace of mind--very important places for human beings.

Texas Monthly recently published ‘A Guide to Texas Best Botanical Gardens” in the article below.  These gardens include the Amarillo Botanical Garden; The Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center in south Austin; The Zilker Botanical Garden, an oasis in urban Austin; The South Texas Botanical Garden and Nature Center of Corpus Christi; Fort Worth Botanic Garden; Dallas Arboretum  and Botanical Garden; El Paso Zoo and Botanical Gardens; also El Paso’s Chihuahuan Desert Gardens; Keystone Heritage Park’s Desert Botanical Garden located in Ft. Davis; Houston Botanic Garden; Mercer Botanic Garden (just outside Houston); The National Butterfly Center in Mission Texas; New Braunfels features a well-kept garden plot beside the home of Ferdinand Lindheimer known as the father of Texas botany  who fled Germany in 1833 when his reformist political beliefs put him at odds with his family and the German government [Not all but some gardeners are radical activists.]; Orange, Texas has the Shangri La Botanical Gardens and Nature Center; In San Antonio we have the “Frida Kahlo Oasis,” the San Antonio Botanical Garden

https://www.texasmonthly.com/travel/texas-botanical-gardens-guide/?utm_source=Texas+Monthly&utm_campaign=63f8aee0d0-TM+This+Week+9-18-21&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_92f99d7313-63f8aee0d0-53256379  

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Always a shady spot somewhere in the garden for people to gather and chat

GARLAND COMMUNITY GARDEN EVENT SEPTEMBER 19 IS NOW A HAPPY MEMORY

Such a nice celebration in one of the nicest places in Garland!  If you are looking for conformity, uniformity or status quo, then the Garland Community may not be the place for you.  However, if you are seeking the unusual, pleasant encounters, and a feeling of contentment where edges of the wild meet with those of civilization, then the Garland Community Garden is definitely a place where you will enjoy spending time.  Many use words such as “healing” and “peaceful” to describe the atmosphere of the garden--a large area with enough ancient pecan trees to provide shade somewhere in the garden all day long.

In addition to being a community garden, our surrounding wooded area is a certified National Wildlife habitat. This is one of the reasons we use no pesticide or herbicides in our garden.

 

A Day Filled with Happy Surprises

Most of the jujubes were eaten and the few that remained were taken home by our guests.  I had expected to bring most of them back home. People are more willing to try new food than I realized.  Even the youngsters gobbled down several.

Pam Swendig, Director of our local Good Samaritans, came bearing lots of gifts for Loving Garland Green and our guests:  a huge box of garden seeds, lots of sanitary wipes, and the promise of one of the lovely turquoise picnic tables from Good Samaritan’s. In case you don’t know the story of the turquoise picnic tables, The Turquoise Table was an unintentional movement started in Austin, Texas by Kristin Schell in 2013 and has reached homes around the globe. Today all fifty states have at least one turquoise table.  One day, Kristin decided to have the delivery service leave her picnic table in the front yard instead of the back and proceeded to paint it her favorite color, turquoise.  Kristin soon noticed that people started stopping and talking and that there were so many neighbors she had not met or did not know as well as she wished she had. The table became a social meeting place that brought together everyone and helped form a community focused on family, friends and most importantly, hospitality. Kristin realized she had stumbled upon something most Americans were missing, authentic and meaningful conversations with the people around them and their families.

I had a similar front-yard experience, oddly enough, also in the spring of  2013. I had only shade in my back yard so I decided to dig up my front lawn and plant vegetable and blackberries, along with a few peach trees and a couple of pomegranate trees.  People driving by would stop to talk to me about my work in progress.  I began counting the people who stopped and got out of their cars to talk to me.  Over the course of two months, over 150 people had stopped.  I decided we need a community garden and then on April 24, 2014 we installed our first bed at what is now the Garland Community Garden.

Young people love gardens too!

 

Linsey Gilbert, School Nurse at ParkCrest Elementary, Stopped by Today

 

Looks like Kristy is telling Linsey a  tall garden tale.

A few years ago, Linsey spearheaded the development of a wonderful school garden at ParkCrest Elementary.  She brought together many elements of community--many of our local master naturalists such as Reba Collins and David Parrish, our Garland Neighborhood Vitality Department, and members of Loving Garland Green worked with Linsey to achieve her award-winning dream. Due to a recent discovery of tainted soil, the EPA is removing the soil and will be helping Linsey to restore the garden to an even greater condition for use by teachers, students, and the surrounding community.


Kristy, the "Okra Angel" Stopped By

 

Kristy eats a Jujube for the first time and likes it!

Almost every time I am in the garden, I meet someone new.  This week Kristy stopped by as I was weeding a bed.  She asked if she could pick the large okra for me.  She really felt like an answer to my prayers.  It was already getting hot and I had only minutes before had the thought “Oh gosh. I have to cut okra before I leave.”  If you don’t cut okra--especially that which has grown too large, it discourages the proper development of more okra.  You really need to pick okra daily as most Texas gardeners will tell you.

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We were happy to see Angela Verlah, one of our Loving Garland Green members at the Garden. Angela, originally from Africa, is one of our more enthusiastic gardeners.  She and her daughter maintain two large beds.

 

SPECIAL THANKS TO YOU ALL!

There are many other happy memories of the day, but I would like to close with a special thank you to the members who helped with this event:  Jane Stroud, Charles Bevilacqua, Nancy Seaberg, Margie Rodgers, Gunvat Patel (Pat).  Also, a special thank-you  to Nancy Tunell of our Garland Neighborhood Vitality department and of course to our Garland Parks and Recreation personnel who keep the meadow in front of the garden beautifully mowed