Hi everyone and welcome to The Urban Culturist.
THE STORY ABOUT ME AND GARDENING
Gardening has always been an interest of mine and as a little girl, I was fortunate enough to have a garden as my playground. Some of my best childhood memories come from that garden, in which I discovered plants and witnessed the amazing process of growing your own food from seedling to fruit. There is something exciting about witnessing a seedling popping up from what otherwise looked like plain dirt.
I carried my passion for gardening, the environment and people with me throughout life. As my life changed, I found myself living in several big cities (I live in one now) gaining access to more varieties of food. Being familiar with many of the fruits and vegetable (through living in the tropics) I needed to readjust to the fact that most of them were edible even though they looked like the unripened versions of themselves. Along the way, the effects of disconnection kicked in and I started missing seeing fruits and vegetables growing around me. Another thing that happened was that the food tasted less. Yes, I had access to and could discover more food which was nice, but I didn’t feel empowered when putting it on the table not to mention connected to what I was eating.
Years went by and I became a biologist. Throughout my studies I kept my interest in gardening alive through the practice of urban gardening. Living in small apartments, I made use of compact living by finding ways to do compact gardening (basically gardening in a small space). Other times, I helped friends with their allotment gardens or lend a hand at nearby community gardens.
RECONNECTING WITH GARDENING
My studies gave me an understanding of biological processes and ecosystem dynamics including urban socio-ecological systems. I learned about the disconnection that modern food industry has created (and maintains) between us and our food. The distance to our food has increased and so has the lack of nutrient they contain and our knowledge of how to grow them ourselves. This in turn puts us in a vulnerable place and relying on food that is mostly produced on the other side of the continent, is not only unsustainable but it also reduces our resilience. Today, many are unaware of how a ripe avocado really looks like. While my studies taught me about the relationship between us humans and our environment, it also reminded me of how enriching it can be to grow your own food.
BECOMING SUSTAINABLE AND RESILIENT
With those lessons learned, I decided to create The Urban Culturist, a site dedicated to providing you with all the information that you need in order to grow your own food. Here you will find information and tips on compact (small scale) farming, general urban farming, community gardening and tips for sustainable living. Inspired by the concept of fortune cookies, I created a section called Wisdom cookies for bits and pieces of wisdom to better care for ourselves, our planet and the people around us.
If you ever need a hand or have any questions, feel free to leave them below and I will be more than happy to help you out.
All the best,