Dressing up your Table

The fairest thing in nature, a flower, still has its roots in earth and manure.
David Herbert Lawrence

Walk out in the Edible Schoolyard on a summer afternoon in August.  Many days it feels like you’ve entered a convection oven.  We are on the east side of downtown Greensboro surrounded by city streets and buildings.  Without a nearby lake or stand of trees to moderate the heat, we swelter.

Once you let the heat sink in, look around and see the abundance that the heat of summer has brought us.  Green and purple basil, orange cosmos, yellow or mahogany sunflowers, golden cherry tomatoes, deep green and magenta malabar, purple pole beans that taste of sugar…all of these grow with their roots in earth and manure.  Last fall the basil and the cosmos went to seed and in the spring the distinctly shaped seedlings started popping up out of the soil.  In the spring, we shifted a few plants here and there, and now, we have more orange cosmos and at least thirty basil plants producing several pounds a week-enough that we needed to share the abundance.  In thinking of nearby restaurants with a commitment to the local food economy, Lucky 32 with executive chef Jay Pierce came immediately to mind.  A few email exchanges later, we joined the local farm partners of Lucky 32.  Last Friday we brought basil, yesterday more basil and flowers.  Besides the amazing food that Jay and his team prepare, each table is even more beautiful with a fresh flower.

When you sit down to eat, bring a flower and put it in a little vase.  Your meal will taste even better.  If you don’t have a flower, come by and we will be glad to share!

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