I arrived at our Free Farm early in the morning on Saturday and there was a light rain that lasted the whole day. The air was crisp and cool and the fava beans were all coming up everywhere we planted them (now is a good time to plant them along with other cool weather cover crops). The crimson clover on the upper terraced beds was bright green and bushy, and many of the plants were singing with happiness and the big compost pile was steamy. I felt really connected with the earth and the rain and with the changing season. On Sunday the weather broke and we had a glorious sunny pre Halloween day. I came to the stand thinking about this transition we are in, from the end of summer and light to the winter and the sun low on the horizon and short dark days. In these next few days the separation from life and death is supposedly thin and we can connect more easily with our ancestors and all who came before us. To celebrate this occasion some of us came in costume. I came dressed out of character and Frida Kahlo showed up so beautiful and joyful. Later we had a Corn and Pea Person. Things are slowing down in terms of how much produce we are growing and collecting from other farmers and it seems the crowds are not quite as long compared to a month ago.
I am planning on closing the Free Farm Stand on Dec 12 for 3 or 4 weeks to take a break, reflect, and gather new energy. Also, I hope we will be working on building a greenhouse for the Free Farm, with the idea of having a community barn raising event on Martin Luther King Day of Service, the third Monday in Janurary, a “day on not off”. Maybe by some miracle the project of planting fruit trees in the park will move forward and we can plant them in January.
A garden in the Mission that I worked in for over 20 years (and haven’t worked in for over 3 years) has got new life it seems (and a new garden hand named Ricardo). The All in Common Garden on 23rd street between Shotwell and Folsom Sts. has a new name, Kali Gardens (and a new beautiful sign). I met Ricardo when he came to help at the Free Farm and the Free Farm Stand. I helped steer him to the garden and the place seems to be a good fit. I went in the garden last week (it has been a long time) and it has become a neat little jungle that is quite beautiful and amazing. I was blown away! Ricardo has already done a lot of work. The garden though could use a lot of help, especially making it less a jungle. If I get the time I hope to help Ricardo out. I can’t quite figure out the times the garden is open, but it seems according to the sign, it is open Monday and Wednesdays at 1pm (and almost everyday from 2pm-5pm).