Thursday, March 12, 2015

Why I Hate Grass, or 'How to Kick Monsanto in the Balls. Article by guest blogger Steve Bivans

I hate grass.

Well, that's not really truthful.

It's not that I hate the plant–or I reckon it's plantS, since there are thousands of varieties of grasses–I actually love walking barefoot through cool, shady, dry grass in the summertime. No, mostly I just hate mowing. Why? Because I'm lazy. No, that's not true either. I just think mowing the lawn is a waste of time and energy. I'd much rather be sitting in my Adirondack chair drinking a pina colada, a beer, and reading a book than pushing some damned mower around the yard. So I rip up grass whenever I can find an excuse to do so. And now, since reading Ms. Flores' book, I do it with a real sense of purpose! It's not just to serve my inherent laziness but to feed the world! or at least to feed myself, which is pretty damned important, plus, I love 'maters. That would be TO-maters. I f'n love 'em.

But it's not just to feed myself, or the world that I consent to bend over and rip up my lawn. To get me to bend at all–I'm of the un-bendy sort, not a yoga master like Ms. Flores–you have to have some pretty compelling reason or mission. Feeding the world sounds pretty compelling, but in reality the world isn't lacking food. That sounds funny to say, since we all know there are people "starving in China"–as my parents always told us growing up. That was in the 70s, about the time that the U.S. government decided that farmers should "get big, or get out" and ramp up food production to "feed the world." Of course, the location of the starving children seems to have drifted over the decades since then, from China to Bangladesh–where ever the hell that is–to Ethiopia (where they apparently don't know when Christmas is, even though most of them are, you know, Christians), to Somalia, where most of them are not. It seems that no matter how much food we produce, children of all religions are still starving. Why is that?

Friday, March 6, 2015

12 Plants to Grow with Children

An excerpt from Food Not Lawns, How to Turn Your Yard into a Garden and Your Neighborhood into a Community, by Heather Jo Flores

Favorite Plants for Children’s Gardens

By no means an exhaustive selection of great plants for children to grow, the following twelve plants can all be direct-sown, grow quickly and easily, and are fun to harvest for food, cut flowers, or seeds.

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