My first read of 2014 was Seedfolks, by Paul Fleischman. It was a quick read, a short novel told from the viewpoint of 13 different residents of an inner city Cleveland, Ohio, neighborhood. The vacant lot had been a nuisance for years, a place for garbage to be thrown out of windows, for drug deals and rats. It is a thoroughly awful place. But one day in very early spring, a young Vietnamese girl, in memory of her father, plants six bean seeds in the lot, next to the abandoned refrigerator, out of sight. Neighbors notice her activity and wonder. And from that curiosity emerges a glimmer of hope, and a community garden is born.

A lovely novella, this story has sparked the creation of many community gardens and much discussion about diversity and community-building. It was a lovely way to start the new year! A story full of hope and caring, this little book takes a positive look at what IS possible.

Our local Community Garden...

Our local Community Garden…

7 thoughts on “Seedfolks

  1. deslily

    i wish i could make myself “hope” more… I always seem to have so little of it.. maybe this year will be better?.
    I sure used to love gardening..back when I was young and had the energy and stamina! lol


  2. Robin Post author

    Kelly, this will be our spring for starting a garden at our new home, too. I’ve been a “gardener” before, many years ago, but have lived in a condo for the last 15 years with only my deck flowers to care for. It’s going to be a big challenge to start our gardens! I’m both excited and nervous about it.

    Pat, seems that hope can be pretty slippery sometimes, especially when you are caught in the not-enough-energy-to-hope cycle. May 2014 bring you more hope, health and energy, and just be a much better year for you! I’ve loved your photos of your beautiful container plants and the grounds at your place, so I know you are a gardener at heart as well as a wonderful photographer. Hugs.


  3. Chris

    Oh I’m so so so glad you read this 🙂 I absolutely adore this book! And I love that you guys have a community garden as well 🙂 It looks beautiful!


  4. Robin Post author

    Chris, I thought this would be one that you would have already read and loved! I’m learning more about our community garden here in our new town. The group that runs the garden is also in charge of our farmer’s market, which I loved going to every Wednesday during the fall. I’ll be posting more about them later on because I’m really impressed with them. Happy gardening!


  5. Nan

    I’ve always loved the idea of ‘allotments.’ I’ve seen them so often in British movies and tv shows. I’m not sure if they are run in the same way as community gardens over here.


  6. Robin Post author

    Nan, I’m not sure, either. I just read a little book called Vincent’s Gardens, about the gardens that Van Gogh painted, and I loved his paintings of the allotments on the hills of Montmartre in Paris! I need to learn more about this community garden in our town and how it all works, although I’ve got plenty of garden space and work to do right here in our new yard!



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