Seeding: I am no part of the miraculous

by George Packard on April 13, 2014 · 0 comments

Foto of a flat of tomato seedlings

My involvement in this miracle is minimal. I put the seeds in moist dirt. (click to enlarge)

Seven days, tomatoes are up. As much as I wish I were a more complicated and interesting person, when it comes down to it, all I really want to do is grow food, cook it and eat it.

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My Coastal LIve Oak: Looking outside the frame

April 6, 2014

I grew up in the 1950s in what’s called the mid-Peninsula, about 30 miles south of San Francisco. In 1948 my parents bought one of the last of two vacant lots in a modest neighborhood of square suburban blocks trapped by a grid of streets, three miles from Stanford University. There are no more original [...]

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March 10, 2014: Snowdrops

March 11, 2014

Our friend Nick invited us on a brief woods walk, late afternoon yesterday, to slog through mud and other delights brought on by the 60-degree weather. Not much happening yet on the forest floor, but one patch of snowdrops is sometimes all we need to make our hearts glad.

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Fractal #34: The Tunnel

February 13, 2014

Riding the Lakeshore Limited along the edge of Lake Erie through hundreds of acres of vineyards where the land is as flat as the surface of the frozen water, listening to a 55 year old man in the seats across from us talking with his mother on a cell phone. She is needy for love [...]

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Fractals #32 & #33

January 20, 2014

Fractal #32
We had stayed up late getting to know each other again after I returned from a trip so we were both asleep when the phone rang  Sunday morning at 7. Joan lifts the receiver and after a few seconds the hesitant caller asks, “Is this the church of the blessed sacrament?” 
“Wrong number,” says Joan, [...]

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The Root of Food: We are ecosystem hackers

December 31, 2013

This is the first of several essays exploring the idea that human food production invariably involves ecosystem change.
My friend Josh Trought is an ecosystem hacker. It took me a couple of years to figure that out, because when I met him I thought he was a farmer. Josh and a handful of other staff [...]

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Fractal #31

December 8, 2013

Waiting this Saturday morning in one of my favorite coffee shops to muster the discipline to write the day’s pages I look up as the opening bars of Paul Simon’s Graceland come over the cafe’s radio: “…following the river down the highway through the cradle of the civil war.” It is 11 a.m. and suddenly [...]

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Turnip Solitaire: Mocked by my volunteers

November 17, 2013

During the past five years I’ve radically altered the way I go about growing food in a garden. It’s not that I’ve adopted some busy and intense new scheme. Nope. It’s simply that I don’t want to do any work in the garden anymore. At least no more work than is inescapably necessary to ensure [...]

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The Garden Itself: My bed is your bed

November 6, 2013

This is the first time since 1979 that I have not planted my garden on our acre of land here in New Hampshire. But the land did not lie unused. Our friends Lou and Martha, both for the moment without garden space of their own, stepped into the mess in April that I’d left from [...]

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Front Yard Food Garden: August 10 Walkabout

August 15, 2013

(Video note: If you have a slow connection, be sure to toggle HD off)
It’s mid-summer…no, I’m kidding myself. It’s mid-August, and any realist can look at an actual calendar and determine that we are heading towards late summer. For those of us who are interested in learning how to grow our own food, late summer [...]

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