A casual look at gardening in the north suburbs of Chicago and a look at our local CSA and Farmers' Market.
Sunday, August 9, 2009
England! What can I say but...
Brilliant! The trip to England was truly a remarkable trip. I had a wonderful time in southern and southwest England. Seeing Durdle Door and Corfe Castle was rich in breath taking scenery. The little villages were quaint and magnificent. Naomi and I were able to visit a couple of farmers' markets here and I was surprised by the slight differences. There the farmers or vendors call out much like a hot dog or beer vendor at a baseball game. The markets were full of new and interesting vegetables such as the broad bean and a few others. I quickly learned that some new veggies were just different names. I found England to be a much friendlier place to small farmers and local food systems. This may be in part due to the Prince of Wales. Prince Charles seems to be a champion of local farms and good food. His influence can surely be felt throughout England. In grocery stores veggetables and meats will proudly claim where the food came from and who grew it if it originated in England. This is a wonderful small gesture that I am sure helps to encourage locavorism.
Farming and the environment have been a passion of mine for along time. As a kid I would help my grandfather with his garden and I would play in the streams and forests that made up the Arkansas and Ohio backdrops of my childhood. As an adult I have focused my life on educating children about the wonders of nature and the joys of gardening. I have worked at environmental education centers as well as learning farms. For the last five years I have worked and devoted much of my free time to Prairie Crossing Charter School, whose mission is to educate the next leaders of our world about the importance of the environment and sustainable farming.