Hope Growing on Trees

I haven’t written anything for this blog for a long while, because I was praying for a positive message that would bubble to the surface of my heart. Recently I watched an inspiring  video of Valarie Kaur speaking. She asked the question about the seemingly  dark times we are in, “What if this darkness is not the darkness of the tomb, but the darkness of the womb?” Later she said  like a midwife”s  advice to giving birth “breathe and then push”. That was good but I needed something off of the screen to move me.

Today the inspiration hit when I visited the 18th and Rhode Island garden on Potrero Hill.  I worked with David Cody and Kevin Bayuk and others in 2008 transforming the vacant land into a permaculture garden. The owner of the lot allowed us to develop his empty lot into a garden to grow food in and at the same time I was just starting the Free Farm Stand and needing places to grow food for the Stand. I didn’t know much about permaculture and this was a great chance to learn about it and at the same time also get a chance to plant fruit trees.

The first workday nine years ago


Bringing in large amounts of mostly wood chips from Bayview Greenwaste Management and 1000 lb. bales of cardboard from Whole Foods Market down the sreet


A lot of work and great volunteers…the number one resource…social capital not dollar sign capital

Berms of wood chips

Planting trees

Today 2017

White Sapote…see the fruit?

I just got some scion wood from this Lamb Haas avocado

The story is I find hope in hard work and trees. We need to keep on working hard to create the beautiful world we want and to continue planting trees, especially fruit trees, to feed our soul and belly. I felt that rush of hope when I visited the garden today and spent some quiet time with the trees and the soil. Coming home I looked across the street and felt that hope again… they are even planting trees in the parking lot across the street from me in the new grocery store and leaving some space for dirt versus car space. Though they may not be planting anything edible and the store is mostly canned food, the landscaping is a move in the right direction.

Hats off to the blessings of nature! Hats off to hard work to make a better world!

I am in the All in Common Garden right now on Sundays instead of at the Free Farm Stand. Please drop by  and see what is going on or to get down and dirty. Our awesome volunteers are keeping the food and magic going at the Stand. The rains have been good. Alemany Farm, where we harvest a lot of our produce is very wet and things are growing, though this is the slow season for vegetables and fruit.  We still need helpers of all kinds so please get in touch.

And a special blessing and prayer for one of our sweetest and hardest working of our volunteers Donaji Lona and her family. Her beautiful and special son Chuy has cancer again and they are all going through this difficulty and challenge once more (see here).

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