A new generation of vegetable gardeners is transforming the urban environment and the way we are thinking about food.
They are planting on boulevards, digging garden plots in city parks, tearing the sod out of their back yards and even their front yards and filling their balconies with pots full of herbs and greens. It's the young, the urban, the cool. And the rest of us, too.
"I've been serious about gardening for about three years," said Rebecca Cuttler, a more-orless landless Strathcona resident. Cuttler, program manager of the Praxis Centre for Screenwriters at Simon Fraser University, lucked into a plot at the Cottonwood Community Garden near her home after joining a work party organized by the Cottonwood group last fall. She also has a garden at a home owned by her family in Kitsilano.
"We are going to get more ambitious with that [Kitsilano] space this year because it's an entire yard, so you can do a lot of stuff there," she said.
Cuttler, 28, has spent countless winter hours sketching her garden space and planning crops by the square foot using the methods she gleaned studying permaculture design at Amherst College in Massachusetts. She has joined forces with a group of seven friends and neighbours to form a Transition Town, essentially a group of people who work together to maximize their productivity and reduce their carbon footprint, using the principles of permaculture to create a sustainable urban ecosystem.