Tuesday, August 13, 2013

LOCAL FOLK MEDICINE : Garden Herbs, Heath and Wholeness

On Sunday it was my great honor and pleasure to welcome a dear friend and mentor to Graze the Roof to teach about Local Folk Medicine: using garden herbs for health and healing. 

Margaretha Haughwout, [http://beforebefore.net] guided us through an inquiry-based approach to learning about common garden weeds. These "common" garden plants, including California Poppy, Yarrow, Mullein, Calendula, Borage and Chamomile have diverse properties that can support both our physical and energetic wellness. 

In the words of Bonnie, a workshop participant from Guerrero St. Gardens, [http://guerrerostreetgarden.wordpress.com/2013/08/13/foggy-august-faith/]

"Through inquiry based learning, folks gleaned a calming groundedness from California Poppy, a comforting protection from Mullein and a sense of blissful courage from Borage — all traditional and scientifically proven uses for such plants.  We spoke of the doctrine of signatures –  the incredible phenomenon that plants display their healing characteristics in their physical presentation.  As a fellow urban dweller it was humbling to witness others rebuilding a relationship with the natural world."

Each participant left the workshop with a renewed faith in the power of plants to help heal and support wellness, as well as an empowered perspective on nurturing wholeness. 

For me, that afternoon, illuminated incredible parallels between our work in the garden and the greater mission of GLIDE...

... Faith, Stewardship, Community, Compassion, Possibility ...

Thank you to Margaretha and all of the workshop participants for an inspiring afternoon. 


*Our next community workshop is scheduled for September 22nd 2013 from 1-3pm : 



Friday, August 9, 2013

Volunteers + Passion Inspire Innovation

Graze the Roof inspires people. I've seen it happen dozens of times and it is always refreshing and always exciting. For some it is the sheer miracle of traveling up seven flights of stairs and arriving in an oasis of food, color, beauty, the buzzing of honeybees and community. For some it is the magic of possibility. Graze the roof captures the essence of what is possible when people come together to support a vision of urban transformation. For others it is the opportunity to engage in a project that gets their hands dirty, and connects them to an innate aspect of our humanity that can get lost when living in an urban environment. Growing food, and growing community is what we are all about. The volunteers that show up each and every week, help us nurture this mission of food and community!

After coming for a few weeks, a volunteer named Judy saw a need for a sink on the roof. She recognized the importance of our community potluck lunch that occurs every Thursday during the volunteer workday. She noticed that following the potluck, we had a very haphazard way of "doing dishes." She came to the conclusion that it could be done much more efficiently and went to work researching some different options. Yesterday, she came to the garden with the necessary supplies and after some collaborative brainstorming, we constructed a sink! We placed our sink near the compost so that we could use the gray water from washing dishes on the compost pile!

Thanks Judy and all of the other volunteers who help make it happen week after week. 


Weekly Workdays in the Garden
Thursdays 10a-2p
questions? contact grazetheroof@gmail.com

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Curious Minds Venture Into the Garden

Yesterday, I had the great pleasure of welcoming a bright, curious group of young people to Graze the Roof. Here is what one young girl had to say about her experience in the garden : 

"On Monday, August 5, 2013 my friends and I went to San Francisco to tour a rooftop garden. I learned more about growing food in the city. 

Graze The Roof is an urban permaculture design experiment. We saw tomatoes, borage, grapes, worm boxes, and more.

My favorite part was how they upcycled materials from local businesses.
They upcycled tin cans, burlap bags, milk crates, and pallets. They are used as containers  to plant fruit, veggies, and herbs.
 Where does the food go??                      

Ten to fifteen pounds of salad goes to the Glide kitchen every week!
The Glide Church prepares 3,000 meals a day, 365 days a year for people in the community.

I am looking forward to visiting Graze The Roof again someday to help work in the gardens."

Montana Hamel
grade 4