Saturday, November 18, 2006

Midterm review

The purposeful cultivation of grain played a key role in the establishment of human communities to particular places and to each other. Long ago, people gathered together to plant, harvest and to make the toughest rough-milled grain cakes to last them all winter. This process encouraged social interactions. It progressed and was refined from there.

Baking is a very old craft, a skill, a trade. When you pay five dollars for a loaf of fresh baked bread crafted by someone's hands it is worth the extra dollars to complete that link.

We need to start thinking about local food in general- I just use grain as an example. There are people out there who want to provide local food for you. It takes effort but you can find them. Shorter travel distance for food equals fresher products and improved social relations.

Good. If you don't know by now, these are the key points that we need to go over and over again.

Although grains interest me a fair bit I am quite simply an experimentalist at this point. I had one small plot of land which yielded four cups of whole grains. I need to link up with someone who knows more. I don't even know what kind of wheat it was that I grew since it was bought at the "seedy-saturday" event, an annual seed exchange and social held in Vancouver mid February. It was in a small manilla envelope with the inked word "wheat" nearly illegible on the outside. I will order some specific seed for this spring so I can begin to be more methodical with my trials.. ie: know what kind of wheat is grown.

I grew many things this summer in my first dedicated gardening endevour, but the wheat was by far the most satisfying to grow. With the heavy rains I miss clipping leaves from green plants and making a salad but I really miss the smell of that golden wheat at sunset. It somehow seemed out of place in the small garden- like I had discovered a secret that others did not yet know. Now I am storing the grains like treasure until the opportune moment.


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