Freezing Hands, Warm Hearts: Local Community Garden Meet Up!

in #homesteaderslast year (edited)

With a temperature of 9 degrees and a windchill of 4 degrees, and thunder brewing in the background, it did not seem at all to be a good day for a gardener’s swap meet. We had organised to meet at a local cafe, but with the wind whipping through and drizzling rain, we quickly retreated the mudhouse shelter across the road next to the playpark, hoping that people would see us there.


By 10.15, the shelter was full of smiling, happy faces, bringing in arm loads and box loads of all kinds of plant matter. A huge wheelbarrow of white and purple irises stood spectacularly in the corner, stealing everyone’s attention as much as the tiny seedlings of tomatoes, snapdragons and purple artichokes. Big bunches of kale, silverbeet and Vietnamese mint sat bursting from bags and boxes in the middle of the table, surrounded by lemons, rhubarb, spring onions, and a huge head of lettuce that I am sure will be the feature of our salads all weekend, despite the cold. There were a few maple trees, some agapanthus, vials of poppy seeds, roses and varieties of lavender, hellebore, geranium and did I say tomato? Given the amount of tomatoes, I imagine January’s meet up might feature chutney and tomato sauce! We estimate at least thirty to forty people showed up over an hour and a half, which was pretty amazing for a small community.

Thus, despite the cold, our hearts were warm! Cradling cups of coffee and chai, we marvelled at the abundance that sat before us, and the loveliness of community spirit. It was truly wonderful to meet so many people enthusiastic about gardening, and even the girls at the cafe popped over and got super excited picking up the last few plants as we packed up. I needn’t have worried that no one would show – clearly, there was a need for a meet up like this to pull us out of our gardens and into a public space to chat about all things plant related. People had come from not only our town, but the neighbouring ones. Every one that turned up were super appreciative that the date had not only been set, but that everyone was so willing to share their produce, cuttings and seedlings.

It was great to see everyone almost beg for there to be another meet up, so meet up again we shall – sooner rather than later, given that it is Spring and a time of growth. We all agreed that if one cannot bring much, it does not really matter – what matters is sharing what we have, including smiles and enthusiasm. Someone also recommended we include preserves and even baked scones would be welcome – on a day as cold as this one, a few carbohydrates would have been well appreciated!

We all agreed that another meet up in a few weeks time would be great, given it's Spring and so many of us have things to share, so as soon as I got home, I redesigned the poster ready for Facebook and the local notice boards.

The nice thing about this was that I achieved something I really wanted to do - bring people together to share abundance. I was really quite nervous about it and ready to run a mile - I'm not the most confident of people and get a little nervous about this kind of thing, but I did force myself out of my comfort zone and I'm glad I did. Now I'm settled in front of the fire with some lentil soup and a calming tea as my hypersensitivity is feeling very intense right now - it was lots of fun to smile and laugh and have fun with like minded people, but it does rattle my nervous system a lot!

I'm really proud of myself for breaking a few boundaries, however, and doing something I believe has real value in the world. I'm also really glad to know there's lots of people around town just like me, big believers in growing your own, keeping it local and sustainable, and sharing abundance.

Folk are pretty awesome.

Have you ever organised something like this?

Have you ever wanted to, but never go around to it?

@naturalmedicine II Discord Invite II #naturalmedicine


Congratulations on the success of the Garden Meet Up. It is great to see the smiling faces, and the community support. Well Done. 👏 😊

 last year 

Thanks so much! It really was a fun morning!

👍 😊

Awesome work. keep doing it. We also have had such farmers meet a few years ago.

 last year 

we are going to try to do it every few weeks now!

Today is #MarketFriday initiated by @dswigle (Denise, that's me!!) Thank you for joining me, sharing your market across the globe. I always look forward to seeing what you send me! It is always such a pleasure to see the different friends here on steemit, going places, doing things, buying merchandise. I have been surprised by many, not being familiar with the culture and I must say that it has been such an educational experience for me in so many ways and I hope for you also. This week, I am still on a cruise, with a very unfriendly internet. So, although I have been able to read everyone, it won't let me comment, and it hasn't let me upvote your post. I am so very appreciative of the loyal #MarketFriday people!! Thank you p As the opportunity will pass, I will tip accordingly when I return!

I have been having a wonderful time and I won't be back until November 15th, give or take a moment. I miss you all!! Take good care of #MarketFriday for me!!

For you, a flower. Always.

#MarketFriday loves you!

Love, Denise

Very cool! And you survived just fine! I'm glad to read it went so well, even with the cold and all. But you didn't say what you came home with....

 last year 

True!!! Irises, daffs, an Australian lavender, a huge lettuce and two different tomatoes I didn't have.

Nice haul!

The first sentence of this post already had me saying "No thanks" all the way from Suriname. I haven't dealt with the cold in years. I've never heard of agapanthus, gonna have to google that one. We finally are growing a few things here in Suriname: some amaranth, cassava and curry trees started.

 last year 

Haha it WAS unpleasant!!! But the smiles carried us through. I must give amaranth a go!!

That is excellent. Building real-life community groups is so important.

 last year 

What really struck me is how everyone WANTED this so much. They were just waiting for someone to do it and I neednt have been so anxious.

Yay! It worked!!!

It's sunny today after a couple of solid rainy days. Might go plant something. Then tommorow I'm going to the woods to look for mushrooms and to do some work!

 last year 

Mushrooms are the best. Have you run out of last years turkeytail yet?

Oh no. Used less than half, and I use them two to seven times a week :)

 last year 

Im still going with hops too!!!

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Sometimes all it takes to step out of your comfort zone is a winter jacket. Warm hearts help too.
Good for you! Glad it was fun. Hope the tea and lentil soup did the trick.


 last year 

It did. My HSP was awful afterwards. Had to meditate and garden to calm down.

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I sometimes wonder how you manage to be a teacher ( not that you're not very inspiring but being hypersensitive ). Then, in turn, I wonder how I managed to be a teacher for years in a row. I remember a time where I had to teach 8 groups of 15 to 30 people in one single day. Even on subjects that I knew little about. I'm so glad that that's all in the past now. Can't wait for you to call it quits and start your journey / life 2.0 :>)

What a great day it turned out to be. Getting out of one's comfort zone can cause some anxiety, but as can be attested to here, great things can happen when we do so.

 last year 

Got to love gardeners and their love of sharing in the abundance!
I think it is awesome that you took the steps needed to make this happen! Obvious there was a need for the community swap by the number of people that showed up and the abundance that was coming from their gardens plus the desire to have another one!
Kudos to you!

Thank you so much for taking the time to put together a @MarketFriday post while I have been away! I was able to read them, however, I was not able to comment, resteem or once I left on the cruise, upvote them. I am still on a cruise and have made it back to the Caribbean and will be home Sunday night, November 17 or possibly as late as the 18th.

Thank you again for keeping #MarketFriday going! It is appreciated more than you will know! I leave you with a tip. 💖

!tip .30

Love, Denise

🎁 Hi @riverflows! You have received 0.3 STEEM tip from @dswigle!

@dswigle wrote lately about: I Just Called To Say I Love You Feel free to follow @dswigle if you like it :)

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