Thursday, July 17, 2008

Carpetbagger's Delight - Vol. 1 - The Oakhurst Community Garden Project

A short walk from our house, past the Oakhurst Village and down Oakview, sits the Oakhurst Community Garden. This little spot a few blocks from the town square of Decatur, occupies a vast (by urban standards) corner lot.

The garden provides plenty of entertainment for the girls, though it's torture for Lola as she must remain on her leash the whole time, thus preventing her from capturing the quick and cunning chicken. Yes, they keep chickens at the garden and we can't visit without peeking in on them. They strut around their pen clucking and scratching at the hay while Lola stares and Kate & Sarah cluck back at them.

The chickens are always splendid. Then of course, there are the bees. Honey bees live at the garden and from time to time they (the people in the organization that cares for the garden, not the bees) teach classes about beekeeping there. The OCGP bees seem to be thriving, which is good news in these troubled times of mysterious mass bee disappearances. Kate & Sarah (and Lola, especially) enjoy the knowledge the bees are there, but primarily avoid goofin' with the bees.

The main attraction on a visit to the garden is the children's garden. It's a small space with a little sandbox that Kate loves. The best thing about it, though, is the Earthen Playhouse, named Ox. A little house built almost entirely of dirt. No, not adobe. Inside the earth house it's always cool, even on the hottest of days. there are keyhole shaped windows and all manner of fun things to read and notice that the volunteers who built it put there in the name of relaxation, reflection and peace. What a bunch of hippies! We enjoy the fruits of the hippies' labor each time we stop by.
Of course the garden sells annual plots for planting and the place is filled with beautiful flowers and all manner of vegetables and fruits growing up and out and taking over. There's a little fountain and a stream that runs along the side of the property.

In and around the garden, in addition to the beekeeping classes, they teach all kinds of stuff. How to make your own rain barrel. How to grow an organic garden. They make giant puppets with the local kids and parade them around on special events that seem to call for parades, like Earth Day and Halloween. There are interesting classes for people of all ages, but they really seem to shine when it comes to the kids. There are always kids there. And just as all the writings and murals and the peace pole insist, it's very calm and pleasant there. It is nearly impossible to be grumpy while visiting the garden.


*pab said...

A lovely, lovely post. When I am in Atlanta next, I will be sure to visit; especially since I will have my little on in tow.

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