Happy 4th of July week! I hope your celebration will a good one full of fresh Georgia tomatoes, onions, watermelons….
As we think about the birthday of our country and how Americans celebrate there is always some type of food involved. And, depending on your cultural background it could include extra garlic, long beans, or tomatillos. The world is our garden and we have always been a country of immigrants.
A Garden is Common Ground
Across our country experienced gardeners are welcoming immigrants and refugees from all over to the United States in a garden setting. A garden is common ground. There may be language barriers but we can all “talk” seed, soil, and water.
Having the privledge of working with some of these gardens it is exciting as cultures are shared through the growing of food. Gardeners from Somalia are interested to see what the gardeners from Burma are growing. Gardeners from Kenya are poking their heads in the Syrian’s garden to see what is coming up there. Our American melting pot is alive and well in the garden.
People especially seem to enjoy growing foods from their homeland and their childhood. This is true even within the United States. Many a displaced Southerner has taken the family collard green seeds when being transferred to “the North”. Year after year, I grow family bean seeds brought down from the hills of Kentucky to Georgia. So, it is to be expected that our collective palate would be enriched by foods brought with immigrants from other countries.
A Diverse Dinner Plate
If you are fortunate enough to be invited to a pot-luck dinner at one of these gardens, it is an experience worthy of a 5-star restaurant rating. And, it will make you truly thankful for our county and all of its diversity.
A special “Thank You” goes out to a local food partner Global Growers who does such tremendous work with these gardeners in Georgia. And to gardens like the International Garden of Many Colors in California, the Fresh International Garden in Anchorage, Alaska and the North Fulton Extension Garden in Sandy Springs, Georgia.
Happy Birthday, America!