Re: dust to dust and the between times
- Subject: Re: [cg] dust to dust and the between times
- From: Adam36055@aol.com
- Date: Fri, 7 Mar 2003 17:13:18 EST
RE: >> say,
i'm just sharing. i've got two projects this spring - don't know about the
rest of the continent, but in Atlanta, it's spring - that are compelling
enough to make me want to type about them. both of these are community
gardens that were sort of high-end for our city, they each were spacious and
had tool sheds and fences and plumbing. and they both dropped dead about
four years ago. but now both of them have new chance at life, new people
with new desire and enthusiasm.
anyway, i just thought it was interesting that the swirling masses of people
living their lives around these old ruins would suddenly and simultaneously
alight upon them.<<
"If you build it, they will come!" Wasn't that what the voice said in that
Kevin Costner baseball weepie, "Field of Dreams?"
We're having hard times here in America; some places never had easy times.
While doing research for a talk I'm giving at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden
later this month, I came across this factoid about NYC gardens that may be
apropos to your experience,
From a piece called a "A Brief History of Grass Roots Greening in NYC," by
Sarah Ferguson, a Lower East Side based journalist who has written rather
extensively about community gardens in the Village Voice and other
"Community gardening in New York has always followed the boom and bust cycles
of the economy, with gardens sprouting up during periods of stress and
falling land values, then withering away when demands on the land became
overwhelming. During the Depression, the City's welfare department and the
federal Works Project Administration sponsored nearly 5,000 "relief" gardens
on vacant city lots for unemployed people. But the project was canceled in
1937, when the USDA initiated its food stamp program for farm-surplus
products. Though many immigrant families continued tending backyard plots,
the gardening cause remained dormant until WWII, when the city announced that
all available, city-owned land would be cultivated for Victory Gardens.
Despite their success, these plots were abandoned at the close of the war,
when the end of food rationing and a burgeoning frozen-food industry
squelched the initiative of urban farmers."
I imagine other cities had similar experiences. It looks like hard times are
boom times for community gardens. Make hay while the sun shines.
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