Part of what’s so cool about this local-living movement is all the new cottage industries cropping up as a result that involve food and gardening. Our Episode 219 featured the story of two such localpreneurs on opposite sides of the country.
In Seattle, Colin McCrate and his business partner Brad Halm operate Seattle Urban Farm Company. If you want to meet the epitome of two laid-back dudes, Brand and Colin are poster boys for living easy. I’m not sure if that’s just the Seattle lifestyle talk’n, or the fact that they spend their days working in and designing gardens; likely it’s a combination of both. We spent a beautiful Sunday filming their story. The interview and garden you see are from Brad’s backyard, which also doubles as their working test garden and home base for business. Our day of filming with the guys was smooth and uneventful—just how we like them. We have very few filming days like that.
Take the other half of this episode for example. Stacey Murphy is the founder of bk farmyards in Brooklyn, NY. With degrees in Mechanical Engineering and a Masters in Architecture, this girl runs her small backyard farm plots like I imagine everything else in her life (my kinda girl by the way). In tiny backyards scattered across Brooklyn, Stacey and her team make the most of every square inch, turning overgrown, weed infested neglected spaces into thriving food gardens. That part you get from watching her segment of the show.
What you don’t get from the episode is a sense of the whirlwind day we had filming this segment. Unfortunately, our schedules didn’t work out to coordinate our time when the GGW crew was in Brooklyn just 3 days earlier. So on the following Tuesday morning, we were on redeye flights from Atlanta to NYC, in a cab by 8:30. It sounds good so far except for the fact that Stacey thought we were going to be on location and ready to go by then. Unfortunately, getting into Brooklyn from LaGuardia is not an easy task, especially when the cab driver really has no idea where we need to go and the GPS isn’t pulling up the address! This is not how I want to start the day.
Even on a good day, 7 miles on the map is a 90-minute trip by car. Add in rush hour and an unknown address and you can see where this is going. We finally arrive about two hours later but now we have less than that to film half a show, when Stacey informs us she has to leave by noon for another appointment! Fortunately, we had a very small location to shoot, a tight storyline and Stacey is an experienced guest that has told her story many times. By noon, she was pedaling away and we were packing our gear.
The filming gods were with us this day. With so much that could have gone wrong and so little time to fix any problems, we managed to get what we needed in record time. What a contrast to how these stories were recorded and even with the farmers themselves. But how cool to know there are people like Stacey, Colin and Brad, and so many others making backyards across America more productive and accessible for organic and locally grown produce.
Watch the full episode that this blog post accompanies, 219 Locavores and Yardsharing.
Lynn Ray Pardo says
Really?! Stacey Murphy is a “girl”?! Seems pretty obvious that she is, in fact, a grown woman, who is quite accomplished…Please stop perpetuating the notion that it’s friendly, familiar, or in any way, flattering, to refer to adult women as children…You wouldn’t dream of referring to men of color as boys, or any other any men that you wanted to profile as admirable role models – so, please! Stop doing it to women. It’s not cute, it’s cool, it’s a put down.
I don’t imagine that you thought about it at all, which is why I’m writing.
This is not a P.C. Nazi thing…this is a Please-wake-up-and-smell-the-organic-coffee thang about treating women with the same respect that you accord men.
Every time an adult woman is referred to as a girl, no matter how old she is, we reenforce the notion that women are childlike and need someone else to make their decisions for them – that respecting a woman for her maturity is somehow insulting – that women should be afraid of maturing, and God-forbid that anyone know their actual age.
I’m sure you get the point…If we’re going to be organic, let’s be natural, eh? Maturity is a good thing.
Joe Lamp'l says
Lynn, I do get your point, but I don’t see making any changes on my end. Maybe it’s a southern thing. I respect everybody and as you’ll from the post, I listed some of Stacey’s credentials before calling her anything but her name. But just as I might give a pat on the back to go along with an “atta boy” to my grandfather, or call our co-host, Patti Moreno as “Garden Girl” because that’s her website name and what she calls herself in her public persona, I personally think it’s ok. As long as we respect each other and give credit where credit is due, how we refer to them, as long as it is with the best of intentions, and that person doesn’t mind, shouldn’t matter to anyone else. Thanks!
As a sociologist I tend to agree with Joe but can see both points of view. Taking into account the norms and values of the originating culture to determine social intent, the term “girl” is generally considered non-pejorative and endearing when employed by males toward females in the South. Among many female southerners it is actually used to establish a friendly or well-meaning rapport between southern women during conversation. I can fully understand that such terms are not culturally universal, i.e. “Ma’am or mam” is considered a southern term of respect – a feminized version of “Sir” in the south, whereas in the North it is considered an insult by some. I think this boils down to respecting diversity. If a person uses a term that is considered complementary in their originating culture we should define it utilizing its intent by the user’s social context in most cases. We might want to explain it carries different meanings to avoid uncomfortable social situations, but accept its application if the purpose isn’t to affront or belittle. Otherwise, we are risking being viewed as being ethnocentric, close-minded or culturally prejudiced ourselves by forcing others to change their way-of-life to reflect our own understandings derived from our own culture (social experiences). This would infer our understandings are superior or better. After reading Lynn’s response I’m sure that isn’t her aim. I think we are seeing an adjustment period between intersecting cultures as members learn about each other – that process isn’t new and is healthy. I’m impressed with both of you for explaining your understandings to each other. Maybe our present society will limp along a few more generations yet if others take your approach… doubt it, but that would be nice. Whew! I feel better now….
Kathy Taylor says
Thanks for the tips. I enjoyed judging the us conference of mayors awards with you. I am a backyard gardener , a composter ( on my second rotary composter). My goal is to grow a cantaloupe but my eggplant, kale and habanero crop last year was awesome! You should come to tulsa and spread the local food word. Check out juniper restaurant and local table– and the palace in tulsa. All great farm to table!
Joe Lamp'l says
Hi Kathy and great to hear from you. Tulsa is on the radar and we’d love to get there sooner than later for sure. And make sure you stay on that goal of growing a cantaloupe. Perhaps it was beginners luck, but a few years back, I dedicated a raised bed blot to my melon patch and had fantastic success. And as you can imagine, the taste was all the sweeter because I grew them. I’m sure you can relate to that.
Thanks for your comments and see you in Tulsa!
Thank you Joe for giving us gardeners, ON A BUDGET, a show that teaches and inspires people to garden. My son built me a garden website for my Mother’s Day gift which I use to help inspire people (children and adults) to GET GARDENING. I also open up my garden & yard for people to tour. This enables them to see first hand how easy, inexpensive and rewarding gardening can be. I am a 62 yr. old Grammy that LOVES teaching children to garden. I lecture and consult, on a very small scale, to garden clubs and church groups. Hoping to inspire others to GET GARDENING. Your garden program is definately going to inspire a whole lot of people. I posted you on website so all viewers can just click and they will be on your website. I added you to my FAVORITES. Thank again and good luck to all of you that are making this show available. Smiles, Lark larksperennials.com
Joe Lamp'l says
Why thank YOU Lark for your very kind words, and the work you are doing to help with the inspiration. I’m impressed with your efforts and always love a ‘Grammy” that’s on board with web technology and social media. Keep up the good words and thanks for stopping by to leave your comment here.