There is really one reason we wanted to plant a garden at Scott Montgomery Elementary. I mean of course, we hope that we contribute to the appearance of the grounds, and I hope there is an abundance of pumpkins at the end of the season. However, the real reason we wanted to plant a garden was to introduce children to where food comes from.
Today we spent an hour with three and four year olds scratching in the soil, spraying water and planting seeds. Frances, our librarian, led us as we got our hands dirty, washed our hands, ate some apples from local farmers (snack time) and got closer to the soil that feeds us.
Gardening is a Process of which one has the opportunity to get ones hands dirty, and watch something grow from a mere seed. Organic gardening is one that demands structural change and that change usually means more time in the garden and as a by-product exposes us to our neighbors. We visit the garden twice a day, to weed and water and as a by product have had many conversations with people asking:
“What you planting?”
“Pumpkins,” I reply.
“You think they’ll be ready by Halloween.”
“I hope so!” is my emphatic-sheepish declaration.
“We’ll see, but I bet your looking at Thanksgiving.” they advise.
Martin Moulton, our tireless neighbor leader (who has been instrumental in our involvement with Scott Montgomery), responded to a local blogger’s question with, “Right now, people here are isolated; once you bring them together, they will see each other as neighbors, not stereotypes. It would dispel some myths.” He is right. We are following his lead while we bring kids closer to soil.