growing joy garden

i saved these gems from the goat milk damaged camera.  just a little swab of rubbing alcohol and the memory card read with no problems.

just in case anyone has any illusions – i am far from the only one growing food in the city.  i’m constantly inspired by so many of the other people who do, have been doing it for far longer than i, and do it for much more altruistic reason than i.

one of those people is edith floyd – who gardens on at least 5 plots on detroit’s eastside, which she calls growing joy garden.  she is tending enough land that it requires a tractor, pushing this garden into urban farm territory.

edith has been slowly acquiring plots around the neighborhood, since losing her job working with detroit public schools.  on a sunny fall afternoon she showed the various plots and what had been growing – as well as spot she hard her eye on.  much is made of the state of disrepair of detroit neighborhoods, often and exaggeration, but on edith’s street only a about a dozen houses are still standing and only half of those are occupied.  the city is set to take down several soon, and she plans to take those spots too and garden on them.

edith doesn’t have any master plans – she sell the food at eastern market, she would like to be self supportive, but in the meantime it helps cover costs and bring in a little extra cash to help support her family.  mostly she just doesn’t want the lots to become garbage strewn, this is her home for over 40 years, and asked if she has any intent to leave – she looks in shock that one would even ask the question.

on this particular afternoon edith had invited me over to check out her new hoophouse.

the house had only been up for a couple of months and it was getting cold so most of the house had not been planted, but a small patch of green brighten up one corner.


mostly mustard greens and spinach with a few odds and ends.  her greenhouse looked great especially for someone who had never build one before.

as i rode back to work, i couldn’t help but be inspired.  edith just goes forth, scraping together funds, and resources wherever she can, not looking back but always forward.

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12 responses to “growing joy garden

  1. I like that Hoop House Idea! Edith had a smart idea, I wish her and others like her good luck with the project. Ginny

  2. Have you seen Edith at Eastern Market recently? I’d love to buy some of her produce! Thanks you for sharing about her. Love her sign, very colorful and beautiful just like what she’s growing!

    • i’ve not seen edith in some time at market – i would assume that she was selling at the grown in detroit table, which is wrapped up for the year. i’m not sure when they get started again, i want to say may.

  3. This is fantastic! Thanks for sharing!

  4. Thanks Patrick, I’m looking forward to May;)!

  5. quals eggs do they taste diffrent to most eggs are they pickeled ive never ever seen eggs in a tin before thats defnitly something new to me

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