While in Austin I made a trip to the Saturday Farmers’ Market. I love visiting markets in other towns to get a sense of the variety that is local to each area. We’re just coming out of winter here in Toronto so the selection at my weekly market is meager. Austin, on the other hand, is well into spring so the selection was very exciting.
One of my favorite purchases were these green tomatoes. I fully intended to indulge in fried green tomatoes, until I realized that, oops, most of the ingredients come in large bags and I wasn’t going to be able to use them up in a 6 day stay. In the end I did not make the tomatoes but did order a plate at the local BBQ joint.
I left the tomatoes behind hoping that the next group to stay in the little cottage will use them up. Probably wishful thinking on my part.
Spring is (supposedly) here in Toronto, which means it’s time to start talking about gardening! As a result, I’ve got a bunch of confirmed events on the roster in Toronto over the next few weeks.
Saturday, March 28, 2009. 1:30 pm
I’m calling this a plant-along rather than a workshop since the aim of this workshop is primarily to walk members of our Seedling Growing Collective as well as members of the greenhouse we are sharing through the ins and outs of starting seeds and caring for seedlings. I will be starting my own seeds as well, so in that sense it is not a workshop but more of a communal effort with some discussion and instruction added on.
I’m not yet sure if this is only open to our group and greenhouse members, but I will confirm for future dates. However, if you are curious about the greenhouse, it will be open to the public that evening at 8:30pm in celebration of Earth Hour.
Toronto Horticultural Society: Small, Urban Potager
Monday, March 30, 2009. 7pm
I’ll be speaking about growing beautiful food gardens in small and difficult spaces. I’ve been told that non-members are welcome to come out for this event and it is free to attend.
Seeds of Diversity 25 Year Celebration:
Sunday, April 5, 2009. 9am-4pm
I’ll be talking about growing urban food gardens, telling stories, and showing photographs of my own gardens as well as other urban food gardens I have visited.
This talk is a part of a larger event with other speakers and costs $35 to attend (includes lunch).
You’ll need to register ahead of time with Seeds of Diversity in order to attend.
Also commonly known as Chinese Fringe Flower. This particular plant was growing up against the wall of the little cottage we stayed in while in Austin. It’s very pretty, and the color of both the flowers and foliage is just stunning; however, it lacks the fragrant scent of common witch hazel (Hamamelis virginiana) flowers.
Hey Toronto! Let’s grow some seedlings together!
I posted about this in the forums but wanted to push it here as well since seed starting season in Toronto is happening NOW.
So here’s the deal: I’ve managed to secure shelving space in a local, community greenhouse to grow seedlings this spring. Because You Grow Girl is also a community, I’ve wrangled enough space for more than just myself to grow. Many of you are also living in small apartments without the space, money, or supplies to grow healthy seedlings, so I thought this was a good opportunity to share in.
This has come about quickly so I haven’t had much time to work through the logistics; however, what I am thinking is that a few of us share the shelf space and in turn share the daily workload of planting, watering, checking up on seedlings, etc. We can arrange a day to work together to get seeds started so if you are a new seed starter, no worries, I’m happy to walk you through the process.
The greenhouse itself also has some expectations as far as membership goes but they are around volunteering time to the park and greenhouse, not payment.
Seed growers always overdo it so I figure that in addition to growing for ourselves we could also grow some that can be donated to a charity that needs transplants. I have some ideas of those in need, but we can decide on a charity collectively.
Are you interested? The greenhouse is in Trinity Bellwoods Park.
I’d like to get an idea of interest and then decide how to proceed from there. We don’t have much time so if you’re in please comment in the forums and we can continue to work this out together.
Update: Just wanted to let everyone know that the space is filled up now.
During our trip to Austin, Texas last week, Ted Forbes, a fellow photo and design geek, drove out to Austin to go on a photo safari. After a series of snafus (mostly my fault), we ended up driving out to Hamilton Pool Preserve, an amazingly gorgeous waterfall about an hour outside of Austin. If you live in the Austin area and have never been, plan to go as soon as possible. It’s one of those places that is so perfect, I suspect it was constructed by aliens.
Unfortunately, we arrived at the preserve about an hour before it closed so there was very little time to explore. We headed straight down to the waterfall and spent all of our time there snapping pictures. On the way back up we walked quickly past a Prairie Restoration Area, and I tell you, I truly wish we’d had more time to explore. It was so, so beautiful. Unbeknown to me, Ted caught a plant discovery on video (it’s just past the first part in which we were making fun of overuse of the word “bokeh”). Watching this video was a bit of an eye-opener for me since this is exactly how I freak out whenever I discover a plant I’ve never seen before. I’ve just never had my ridiculousness played back to me.
Here’s the cactus I was going nuts over:
In the video none of my friends got what all of the fuss was about. But I suspect that you, my fellow plant geek brethren, will.