(originally published 6/2/2010)
I recently spent a few weeks shooting gardens at some local elementary schools here in Los Angeles for a magazine article I was working on. Growing up in New York City suffice to say I wasn’t exposed to many gardens, certainly not at school. Some nice house plants maybe, but the closest thing I got to growing produce was the ever present avocado pit that my mother would stick in a jar on the kitchen window sill, hoping it would sprout into a tree one day. I can safely say that the 20 or so pits she tried to grow did not bear fruit. I hope my son gets more of an opportunity to learn about this than I did, and with some of the school gardens I had a chance to visit, the prospects look good.
At one time LA had over 70 or so school gardens, now there are much less, school budgets probably, but hopefully they are back on the rise. I have actually been photographing a lot of gardens and gardeners and produce lately and I had no idea how extremely popular it is, in Los Angeles, and just about everywhere. It makes sense, with economic times being what they are, people are looking for ways to be more self sustainable and nothing is more self sustainable than growing your own food. I saw the coverage of Michelle Obama planting an organic vegetable garden in the lawn of the White House and I think that sent a message to folks across the country that growing your own is both cool and sensible...
For complete story contact me at pbennett(at)cotpimages.com