I worked at six different farms this spring, summer, and fall, some of which were exploitative and demanding and others that were really rewarding. The one I enjoyed the most is a chemical-free nonprofit where we grow vegetables, flowers, and herbs. The herbs we grow are sold to a tea company run by the owner of the farm that empowers refugee and immigrant farmers by giving them seedlings and buying their herbs. Another I really enjoyed is a like-minded, certified organic, sustainable no-till farm that uses almost no gas powered equipment. This past season in my small backyard, I also grew 330 pounds of produce, 65 pounds of which I donated to meal sites for homeless folks at Open Table in Providence RI. (I started selling my produce this year as well at a local farmer’s market to raise money for my future farm.) This is why I haven’t been able to post any new content since March. But I thought I would post some pictures of my backyard garden and the produce I’ve grown in it so you can see some of what I’ve been up to. Everything in my garden this year was started from organic seed myself, except for two eggplant transplants and a few lacinato kale, spinach, and lettuce transplants. All was grown organically.
I sowed pepper and watermelon seed in my closet back in March:
I transplanted one of the above watermelon seedlings at the nonprofit farm where I work and harvested a 64 pound melon from the plant back in September:
Scallions and peppers in my yard:
Carolina Cross Watermelon
Red Russian Kale and lettuce:
Red Russian Kale
Sulu lettuce planted after melons were harvested:
Dark Red Lolo Rossa:
Donations of produce from my yard:
Donation of kale and peppers:
Another donation of kale and peppers
Donation of Red Russian Kale, lacinato kale, scarlett kale, and peas:
Another donation of the same:
More donated kale:
Beets, lettuce, peppers, carrots, and scallions harvested for the market:
Another harvest for the market:
Bell peppers, scallions, and green beans harvested for the market:
Watermelons, scallions, peppers, and green beans harvested for the market:
Eggplant harvested for family:
Painted mountain corn from Baker Creek Heirloom seeds. Apparently, this variety has been grown by northern Native Americans for thousands of years. I planted it a little too late in the season so I wasn’t happy with the results but it’s a pretty variety.
Another kale harvest:
Some pics from the nonprofit where I work:
Working on farms does not pay much and I’m still a ways from having enough to buy my own land. The work I do on this website doesn’t pay either. In fact, I lose money to keep the site running, so please donate if you can.