Symbiosis :: the interaction that happens when two or more different organisms live in close proximity to one another and the relationship is mutually beneficial.
In the natural world symbiosis happens all the time. For example, the fungus (peaking out in the photo above) needs the old wood for food. The mushroom rots the wood and makes nutrients for the soil that in turn feeds plants. Plants feed the animals (humans included). Then, the animals will die, eventually feeding the soil and the cycle continues. Symbiosis happens intricately throughout nature on both large and very small scales. Shared support is how the universe thrives.
Our little flower farm is in it’s fifth year and growing stronger than ever before. In a sense, we are experiencing a resurgence of our own kind of symbiosis. I’ve gone from being a single farmer, doing my own thing, to co-farming with a couple of very reliable, funny, and hard-working friends.
This year we had our first ever volunteer work party to start the season. With good snacks and friends laboring together the chores of fence building, compost making, and weeding seemed much easier. I’m pretty sure this will become an annual tradition!
Thanks to our friend (and shareholder), Erin, who works at Columbia Street Roastery we have received a bunch of donated burlap coffee sacks which work well to keep the weeds down on our garden paths in between the flower beds. Last week, I ran into another local-food-agriculture-community-enthusiast, Dustin Kelly, of Autumn-Berry Inspired. He was getting rid of a sturdy table and bench by the curb, which he immediately delivered to our farm. We know these will come in handy on harvest days and, hopefully, for a quiet sit amongst the flowers on cool summer evenings.
It’s these relationships (big and small) that make our CSA truly community supported!