Yesterday was a sad day. I had to dig up my plants that were planted throughout 2 garden plots provided to me through DUG: Denver Urban Gardens. I didn’t WANT to dig up, but I don’t feel like I had any other option.
I was EXTREMELY excited to garden with DUG, I had been in contact with them for months waiting for an available plot to present itself to me and it FINALLY did. However, after that initial excitement, things started to move downhill pretty quickly. You see, someone was trampling my garden, someone dug up my tomato plants and stole my tomato cages, and a few weeks later, someone took two concrete blocks (I was using as stepping stones) out of the garden plots. And that’s not it – I was also promised a third plot (that was completely covered in weeds taller than myself). I had JUST come up with a plan to plant the seeds that were gifted to me at “On The Farm, Off The Hook” this past week SO I spent hours weeding the plot (do you KNOW how dirty that job is??) and prepping the soil, only to come back the next day and find that SOMEONE ELSE swooped in and planted the space! THAT is STEALING! Luckily my seeds are still in my possession and not buried at the bottom of someone else’s garden mess.
I never even really got the opportunity to blog about my garden after it was planted because the “drama” started almost immediately. I kept waiting for the drama to subside so that I could focus on the happy but it seems like EVERY TIME I visited my plot (daily), I left feeling mad and upset. It shouldn’t have been that way. I was using that garden as an experiment, growing things I’d never grown before. It should have been a happy place, full of newness and positive energy.
This week, I finally lost all confidence in that space, I knew that if I let my plants produce, there was a fat chance the fruit would be stolen from me. Or trampled on. Or who knows what else. So I moved all of my plants out of that space and in to the garden space behind the salon, where I’m confident they will be well looked after. Luckily, I had room for everything and didn’t have to abandon one single plant.
Before I made the decision to dig up all of my plants, I worked with the garden leader to find answers, but she had little to no information and/or skills to manage the challenges I was having.
In the middle of all this drama, I came across a blog post titled, “Community Does Not Mean Kumbaya” written by a garden leader and/or an employee of DUG. In the blog post, she expands on the drama and conflict that stems from the “community garden” community. Although an interesting read, I’m not sure that I found any relief in knowing that I’m not the only person experiencing conflict in the community. If anything, I’m even more turned off by the community gardening experience. I’m almost 100% sure I’ll never garden a community plot again.
In the photo above, you see a tomato cage with two tomato plants planted in it. That cage and those plants magically appeared about one week after my two tomato plants went missing from my plot. I’ll never know for sure if those tomato plants were the ones I had planted or not, but I dug them up and took them with me anyway. I might know if they were mine after they start producing fruit. Gah, it makes me want to scream.
Everyone has a theory about what happened to my tomato plants but I’m about 100% sure it was the church groundskeeper who dug up my plants. He places a cinderblock in the space that my tomatoes were planted in – I doubt a thief from the streets would bother with the cinderblock. My belief is that someone from the church (probably the groundskeeper) and/or the other gardeners were the ones trampling my garden, and spilling piles of weeds in to it. Either way, the problem was obviously “on site” and I have no regrets moving my things off of that site.
I have been taught this lesson a time or two in the last few weeks: if there is someone or something that is presenting anger and/or negative energy to your world, it is best to remove it from your world.