Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Urban Foraging

Because my family lives in Atlanta, I often think about what it would be like to live there or in the vicinity. And although my vision of it is usually peopled by corporate, SUV-driving types who spend hours in traffic and on their bluetooth devices, I like seeking out more positive representations of that city and its people.

So I was especially excited to see this NYT piece about urban foraging in Atlanta, and about how some folks are making use of the produce growing in the yards of abandoned, foreclosed homes.

Gardens no longer tended, fruit trees left unpicked--all are left hanging with fruit and vegetables, wasted if not for folks who seek to salvage this free and local bounty.

Image from http://www.nytimes.com/slideshow/2011/08/11/us/FORAGE-5.html

I also liked the portrayal of the city itself, as one that has organizations like Concrete Jungle, which forages fruit that gets donated to food pantries, and which has built a database of untended fruit and nut trees on commercial and public land. A city vibrant with opportunities to engage with the kinds of things that excite me most, even if those things are not quite as central or visible as they are here in Madison.

Who knows what else in the food/agriculture/community sector may exist in all the many other cities in which we may end up? What exists in yours?

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