Monday, October 21, 2013

A Proven Energy Boost

There are days when the thought enters my mind ... 'I'm tired, in pain, I need a long break. It's okay, I won't be missed. Take off.' Then, that thought changes before it takes hold on the path to action ... 'I'm not tired, true I am in pain, and I need a break. It’s time to get into the garden.' This changed thought sends a renewed energy through my mind, body, and soul. Off I go to one of the five community gardens that I'm supporting through Victory Garden Foundation’s Peoples Victory Garden program. And, then, WoW!

Amazing things happen. More than 50 families accept the opportunity to receive fresh, organic herbs and vegetables. This all started with me and a few volunteers harvesting herbs and vegetables while taking the opportunity to do some garden chores at the Peoples Victory Garden at the Telegraph Center because the Victory Garden Crop Swap and Harvest to Feed opens on the front lawn giving clients of the food pantry, neighbors, and passersby organic produce harvested from the garden in the past hour. Fresh! Garden members of the Peoples Victory Garden harvested for themselves and the Harvest Table around 11 am. From noon until 2 pm; we met people, had some great conversations, made new connections, and shared lots of smiles and hugs.

Collard greens, mixed spicy greens, cilantro, sorrel, radish and radish leaves, nasturtium leaves and flowers, yarrow, squash, Japanese eggplant, pak choy, peppermint, oregano, thyme, lemon balm, peppers, sage, dried beans, celery, tree kale, tree tomatoes (tamarillos), onions, chive ... This is the list of produce abundance shared to feed about 50 families. 
Kevin and Kate share smiles with a view of some of the day's bounty!

 Now it’s 1:45 pm and just a handful of produce remains. As I help pack up the Harvest Table food stand, I'm thinking about next Friday to do this again. More harvest and tell more people about this opportunity. Then, quickly, the thought of gardening on Saturday enters my mind. It’s excitement, tranquility accomplishments, and the tastes of good food that rush over me. Looking forward to …
Garden entrance weeded and sheet mulched ... much more to do!
Next day … early morning into the garden, growing more food to share. I'm tired, in pain (I have chronic back pain-sciatica and stenosis), and I need a long break. Yes, a long break in the Peoples Victory Garden. Now that’s an energy boost! Sharing!!

The Peoples Victory Garden is accepting new garden members to grow food. Community work days at the Telegraph Center location (5316 Telegraph Ave, Oakland 94609) are Saturdays, 1 to 3 pm and 1st and 3rd Saturdays at the Lake Merritt location (Edible Gardens at Lakeside, Bellevue Ave, Oakland 94610) through November. There's no charge to join. Contact the Garden Director at for more information about the program.

Victory Garden Crop Swap and Harvest to Feed continues through November 8 on Fridays; 12 -2 pm. Contact Kevin at for more information.

Bring your extra crop and take some home!

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