November 28, 2008

Realizing a Goal

For the last few months, I have been working to turn a patch of overgrown grass in my back yard into a functioning garden. (There’s a food price crisis on, don’t you know. Got to produce as much as possible myself.)

I started clearing in June…
...collected fertilizer from the nearby cow fields in July…
...and planted when I returned in October. I also had to build a credible fence to keep the marauding cows out. My goal throughout was to produce something - it could be as simply as one single leaf of spinach - to give to the women who work in the kitchen in Itipini.
My garden

I’ve had some setbacks along the way - I inadvertently weeded out most of my tomato plants and had to re-plant them - but on Thursday I realized my goal when I harvested a good bunch of spinach and brought it in to the women. I supplemented my dinner that night with some lettuce from the garden. This is much earlier than I expected and given the length of the growing season here, I think there are more vegetables coming.
My spinach

In a ironic bit of timing, Mkuseli had decided Thursday morning was a good time to harvest spinach from the after-school garden. So when I swaggered into the kitchen carrying my bag of spinach, the first thing I saw was about four times as much spinach on the table. After its recent expansion, the after-school garden is approaching small-scale commercial agriculture and he had taken that much from spinach from about a third of his plants.
The after-school garden

My moment evapourated but I still managed to achieve a goal. Given how difficult doing anything around here can be, I still took some pride in my accomplishment.


Anonymous said...

Your garden looks amazing, congrats on the accomplishment!