Friday, August 31, 2012

Detroit, Part 2

In the distance behind other growth, you can see corn, beans, and squash (the "three sisters").  One could imagine that years ago, before there was a Detroit, native people grew these same plants near this plot.

 Peppers, tomatoes, and squash are found in this greenhouse.
This corner lot was very neatly kept, but the surprise was the ground cover--it is purslane.  I would never have imagined letting this deeply-rooted weed sprawl, but it probably helps the soil retain moisture.
 Here is a close-up of the purslane.

Watch for Detroit, Part 3!

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Detroit, Part 1

We spent the morning of August 20 exploring one of the depopulated areas of Detroit.  I wanted to see the urban gardens and farms that have been created there.  Uninhabited derelict houses have been removed, and in some areas grass has been planted and is mowed.  Other areas have been left to grow wild.  Streets are deserted, and it is very quiet like being in the countryside, despite seeing buildings in the distance.  The infrastructure is crumbling.  It was eerie to think of all the working people in those neighbourhood, now gone along with their homes. Where are they now?

A back lane, soon to disappear.
The sidewalk disappears into the wilderness.
A crumbling sidewalk, but trimmed and weed-free!  This was next to an extensive corner garden.

In case anyone has views to remodel, this house is an example of why not.  Perhaps it is still standing because someone lived in it until recently.
But even the wild plants, and perhaps especially the wild plants, attract great insects!  I came across this scene in one of the gardens.

Watch for Part 2!

Monday, August 6, 2012

Chickens in Dunbar Area?

After seeing all the backyard chickens while on the Ballard garden tour, I wondered about chickens here in Vancouver but thought it unlikely there would be any in the Dunbar area.  However, a visitor to my garden tipped me off to several places where I might find some.  I snapped a photo through a picket fence catching this chicken that lives in a backyard with at least one other chicken one half block from "downtown" Dunbar: