A Crop and Swap is an informal get-together of folks who have backyard harvest to spare, or are looking for new ideas for what to grow next.
Recently we went to the very first crop and swap held at Kiama Community Garden, with our home-grown offerings of greens, herbs and a few oyster mushrooms.
It was an early morning of harvesting at our patch, with Ashar on aphid-patrol for the kale leaves, which he inspected one by one. Because organic veg sometimes means a few extra stowaways.
Most of the veg we took was grown in our first biointensive bed – about 2 square meters of growing space that we’ve been eating from every day, for months now.
But I’m impatient to get the rest of my tomatoes and other Summer veg into the ground now, wherever they’ll fit, so the crop and swap was a perfect excuse to harvest the remainder of winter greens from this bed.
Soon we were packed and ready (with wet cloths over the crates of produce, just like on our farm in days gone by – old cloth nappies are best for this job – perfect size and weight – a trick we learned from Allsun Farm.)
Like everyone else going to the crop and swap, probably, I intended to just give over my veggies, and come home veggie free. Because I had too much garden veg as it was, and that’s why we were going.
But in the grand tradition of community garden gatherings, we came home loaded with goodies.
Fresh quail eggs, yacon tubers, yacon plants and lemongrass. Yum, yum, yum.
Kiama Community Garden is an amazing little space tucked away on a slip of land between Blue Haven, the main retirement home of the area, and the Kiama sports oval.
It’s covered with many annual and perennial food bearing plants, as well as a great little community gathering space, a pizza oven, stingless bees and all sorts of other treasures.
A good morning’s work, meeting new folks, new tastes and new plants. Could Saturday morning get any better?
Now to find somewhere to plant that yacon…
Crop and Swaps nearby:
Community gardens are often a central point for crop and swaps (or other vege swaps of all stripes).
So if you’re in Australia, check out the Australian City Farms + Community Gardens Network for a garden near you.
Thanks to everyone at Kiama Community Garden for making such a beautiful space and to Matthew Russell + Angie Richie for running the first day. Huzzah for community food.