When I destroyed my ankle in the Kings Canyon wilderness in 2003, I decided that if I would not be hiking in my beloved mountains anytime soon, I had best bring the mountains to me.
Unable to walk for 6 months, I sat down on my front lawn and systematically began to remove grass, replacing it with the native plants I knew so well and loved. Then those sneaky mycorrhizae’s slight euphoria got in my blood, and I have not been able to stop digging. I added a raised bed that hosts tomatoes, chard, herbs and artichokes.
In December 2009 I met folks with an idea to make Throop’s weedy yard a food forest. The planning was a long and winding road, but in the meantime, we just started digging. Intention manifests goodness! I recall one day, after throwing mulch for two hours, feeling overcome with mycorrhizal giddiness and just lying down in the fresh mulch, giggling. The soil has its own way of engaging us.
The Throop Learning Garden has helped me look at every choice I make in my life through Permaculture eyes. My “signature plant” is Cleveland sage, because the fragrance transports me to familiar wilderness areas. I always tell people that this is the smell of California."
I was a novice to Permaculture and feel like I have learned it by osmosis surrounded by gardeners who are Permaculture certified. The Throop Learning Garden has helped me look at every choice I make in my life through Permaculture eyes. My “signature plant” is Cleveland sage, because the fragrance transports me to familiar wilderness areas. I always tell people that this is the smell of California.
I am thrilled that the 8000 square-foot Throop Learning Garden is now supporting another project in my neighborhood. The Jackie Robinson Post Office Native Plant Garden on Washington and Mentor will soon have pups from Throop’s prolific Hooker’s Evening Primrose. The tall, brilliant yellow flowers against the dark green wall will delight neighbors and will remind me of the nurturing place that Throop Garden is, and where my love for gardens flourished.
I enjoy being the first in the garden very early in the morning. I begin by greeting and thanking the plants as I walk the inner swale-paths and the perimeter, picking up trash so that passers-by might absorb some of the sheer awe I feel seeing the miracle of growing things.