Food Security

Food Security

Douglas Gayeton for Lexicon of Sustainability

Food Security

Location: Erika Allen’s Garden, West Garfield Park (K TOWN), Chicago, IL

Featuring: Erika Allen and Ayo

Food Security: “Having consistent year round access to safe, local, affordable and culturally appropriate food that is grown, raised, produced and moved about in manners that are responsible to the environment while reflecting a consumption of natural resources that is equitable with a view to our offspring seven generations from now.” – Erika Allen

Ayo prefers to be outside barefoot. Though only 2, he already knows where his food comes from. When he’s older he’ll know how to grow his own food (that’s food security.)

When Erika moved onto this street five years ago she set out to create a safe, nurturing habitat and to show her neighbors what could be done to transform and bring into balance even the most challenged communities.

I ask Erika what she grows in her urban Chicago garden and she says: heirloom tomatoes, lemon cucumber, suyo long cucumber, Italian eggplant, ping tung eggplant, blanco eggplant, okra, ground cherry endive, cosmic purple carrots, nante carrots, leeks, redbor kale, dwarf curled kale, Russian kale, dandelion greens (red rib), scarlet runner beans, fever few, chamomile, thyme, safe, table grapes, sunflowers and lots of basil (and that’s just her summer crop).

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