Yesterday I found myself longingly fondling some luscious long leaves of kale - show me a hipster who hasn’t.
Naturally I blame my brother.
If I hadn’t been at the great little community centre where he held his birthday party, I wouldn’t have been exposed to said kale in the adjacent community garden.
Along with kale, the beds were resplendent with cabbages, caulis, fennel, strawberries, spuds, eggplants, beans, tomatoes and rhubarb. It was a veritable cornucopia.
When I was a kid, 'to veg' meant to totally relax and let it all hang out. At the same time I remember being fascinated (and slightly terrified) by Arcimboldo’s vegetable-head paintings. Even today they remain a bit, well, fascinating and terrifying..
Four hundred years later (from when they were painted, not from when I was a kid) veg is still so hot right now – some days I can hardly turn a corner without running into an edible plant. Community groups, shop owners and councils have wholeheartedly embraced the idea of productive landscapes.
Previously we’ve shared a stroll through a range of these, and also talked about them earlier in the year, under the banner of K is for Kitchen.
But there’s something I find so deeply compelling about coming across a little herb and veggie garden growing in the public realm that I thought I’d hit you up again. And to prove that they literally are everywhere, these examples are all ones I’ve bumped into in the last fortnight, both in Melbourne and Brisbane.
This is the kitchen garden at the Observatory Café in Melbourne’s wonderful Botanic Gardens.
These lush leaves are growing in the verge beside Pope Joan in Brunswick…
…and next door you can buys these heirloom variety seedlings to take home.
Back in Bris, the intersection of Turbot and Upper Edward Streets (just down the road from Landscapology HQ) is resplendent with rosemary, and these little pots were welcoming passengers at the Portside cruise ship terminal.
Finally, these were the some of the goodies temporarily distracting me from the wiener van and jumping castle yesterday…
So Happy Birthday Fraser, my dear baby brother, and thank-you for giving me the gift of another great veggie garden.