4 months ago
#Repost @humanswhogrowfood ・・・ Meet Jill Volat @theedibleapartment from Los Angeles, United States 🇺🇸 “When I was around eight years old my dad killed a zucchini plant we had growing in our back yard here in Los Angeles. He has OCD and decided that all those leaves looked “untidy” - so he cut them all off. Needless to say it soon died because, well, photosynthesis is kind of hard to do without leaves. Though unlikely, this experience is what got me to look deeper into how we grow food - I’ve never looked back. Our growing space is 2,000 square feet which was previously a front lawn at an apartment building. For soil, the key is lots of compost, worm castings (and worms) and coffee grounds. I drink lots of coffee for the benefit of my soil. That’s just the kind of gardener I am. For pest management, the key is good quality soil to produce strong plants that resist bugs just like humans having a strong immune system to ward off colds. I spray off aphids and hand pick loopers. That’s why I keep my teenager around: to squash loopers and rolly polly bugs. Growing food is health, history, fitness, politics, empowerment, self expression, community, economics and fun all in one. Teaching and inspiring others; sharing the harvest and being a part of an ancient practice are some of the biggest rewards of gardening. Showing what’s possible, especially here in the middle of a bustling city like Los Angeles that is not known as a “farming town.” We bring about health awareness and inspire people to grow food at home through the nonprofit I founded called The Edible Apartment TEA and through my eight years as an urban farming educator and lecturer. We are an entirely VOLUNTEER 501c3 organization. We convert multi-family sites (particularly at apartment buildings where grow space is scarce) into thriving organic urban farms. I also founded the garden-based skincare line Earthling Beauty, to fund the nonprofit. If you want to grow food, don’t overthink it. Just start. Remember to enjoy the process. Expect to kill a few plants along the way as you learn what works and what doesn’t for your particular site. Just throw them in the compost or green bin. It’s not a big deal.