Monday, December 15, 2008

I Left My Spade In San Francisco

What a better way for a gardener to enjoy a cold rainy December day than pour himself a generous glass of red wine, cuddle up on the couch, and crack open a new garden book! I was recently given a very enjoyable and informative early Christmas gift. The book is called Cracks in the Asphalt: Community Gardens of San Francisco by Alex Hatch, photography by Stacey J. Miller. There is also a foreward by Pam Pierce, author of the San Francisco blog Golden Gate Gardener.
The book is basically a photograph-full guide to a number of community gardens around the city. Each chapter is a neighborhood, and includes a garden-tour map for the gardens in that part of the city. One of the gardens included happens to be the one where I took an urban composting workshop...and thus my inspiration to start composting using worms right in my own home!
It's a great book that really reflects the history, as well as the growing interest, among San Francisco residents to be close to the earth, whether its enjoying plants for aesthetic value, or to savor the veggies and fruits of their labors...however small their plots!

This book seems to be right up the alley of Greenwalks by a blogger in Seattle who, among her other garden musings, writes about her own ambling garden tours and urges us to pay a little more attention to the things many of us pass by on our way to work, or school, or where-have-you. In fact, I wish I had an opportunity to pass her this book before her recent visit to San Francisco! Nonetheless, there are some great entries there from that trip.
Pam Pierce channels the spirit of the community garden: "In less than 100 square feet, a community gardener might be escaping the woes of life, rekindling a childhood joy in growing the fruits of the earth, or revving up for a leap into a career in horticulture or farming."
For more information, including where to pick up a copy of the book:


  1. Hey, thanks so much for the nice comments and link! Yes, I wish I'd seen that book too before we visited! But we'll be back. Maybe I'll ask for it for Xmas. :) Hope you enjoyed your glass of vino!

  2. Brilliant, I like to know which gardening books are being read, especially on your side of the pond as there are hardly ever reviews in the weekend colour sups on these unless published in the UK. Keep reading (Oh, and drinking!)
    Woodland Fay is reading 'The New Book of Apples' by Joan Morgan and Alison Richards

  3. Hey... I just found you via the note you left on my Blotanical "plot!" (Yeah, I don't always log in regularly there.) NICE BLOG! I can't wait to read more... I can't imagine making the transition from Midwestern/Great Lakes gardening to being a California gardener. :)

  4. What a great book. That looks wonderful, and I look forward to checking this out.
    Yes, I love reading books all the year, but gardening books especially.
    Best regards,