Sunday, February 21, 2010

Trinity Reach Farm

It all began the spring of 2009.  What started as a small herb garden on a second floor patio, expanded into a rooftop recycling-bin garden, with Paul and I scrambling up precariously perched ladders to water carrots, beets, and radishes.

When our landlady put the kibosh on somewhat hazardous experiment, we looked to the front yard as a new home for our burgeoning interest in horticulture.  Much to the chagrin of our downstairs neighbours, we turned over a small section of lawn, and began successfully cultivating a more serious and productive garden.

Living in a predominantly Italian neighbourhood, it wasn't long before others began taking notice... our neighbour, Franka, found our new project especially comedic, given that two young men were following in the footsteps of nonnas all over the street.  Her unsolicited, but much appreciated advice in broken english helped us to realize that being a sustainable household is not just a trend for the environmentally savvy, nor necessarily a hobby for the under-employed, and that yes, we had, in fact, planted our cucumbers too close together.

With vegetable production ramping up, we turned to canning as a way to keep our season's crops from spoiling.  This simple act of preservation piqued our interest in other forms of preservations.  Around this time, we started some small home charcuterie projects, beginning with fresh sausages, and duck prosciutti.  With some reasonable successes doing the easy stuff, a small bar fridge was purchased, and larger, more challenging pieces of meat were begun curing.

After the timely, and somewhat inevitable decline of our downstairs neighbour's relationship, Paul's brother Dave staked claim of the first floor apartment.  We promptly turned over the lawn in the back yard, clearing room for an even larger garden, and more ambitious projects.

Ideas began spilling out at a rapid pace.  A smokehouse; chicken coupe; fire-pit; compost... perhaps fueled by a few too many home-brews, our small herb garden had turned into a full-fledged small-scale urban-farm, overseen by three inexperienced twenty-somethings.

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