It would come as no surprise, I’m sure, to learn that I’m particularly sensitive to any mention of gardening as a companion to the creative process. Here are three very different stories that caught my attention this week.
When I was headed to Trader Joe’s last weekend, I heard a story on NPR about Trout Gulch Farm and couldn’t wait to get home and find out more about this place started by young filmmaker Isaiah Saxon.
According to the story on NPR, “With the help of filmmaking buddies Sean Hellfritsch and Daren Rabinovitch, Saxon has transformed 10 hilly acres surrounding his mother’s house in Aptos, California into Trout Gulch, a kind of rural hacker space where they build their own houses, grow organic vegetables, milk goats and produce state-of-the-art digital animation.”
Saxon explains how his group of 21st-century pioneers takes a do-it-yourself approach to just about everything. You can find out more about how these fellows are building their Hobbit village and building a successful business at the same time at Trout Gulch.
Four years ago, author Barbara Kingsolver had another bestseller with her nonfiction book, Animal, Vegetable, Miracle written in conjunction with her husband and daughter.
The book chronicles the experiences of Kingsolver and her family who decided to spend a year eating only food they raised themselves or that was grown in their neighborhood.
As a result, Kingsolver found herself becoming the spokesperson for the locavore movement—and inspired countless others to start producing more of their own food.
The experience also inspired a small surge in the number of farmer’s markets around the country, plus a new enterprise started by Kingsolver’s spouse.
Her husband Steven Hopp reports, “My most notable commitment to local food has been to put the ideas I’ve learned into practice in our own little community. In 2008, I created a community business devoted to developing and promoting a local economy.
“The Meadowview Farmers’ Guild is a two-part business, a restaurant devoted to local foods and a general store supplied with local hand-made goods from more than120 different individuals. The Harvest Table Restaurant is a casual fine dining restaurant devoted to sourcing its food as locally as possible.”
You can find out more about activities inspired by the book by visiting www.animalvegetablemiracle.com.
My favorite story of the week, however, comes from writer Elizabeth Gilbert who shared her experience on finding her lost curiosity by abandoning her writing and taking to the garden.
Read Gilbert’s short essay here: What to Do if You Can’t Find Your Passion.