You don’t have to go into the garden or the greenhouse. You can listen to the song from the sidewalk, or while sitting in the park.
In 2013, Hope Blooms won a substantial grant from the TV show Dragons’ Den to build a greenhouse and expand their production of salad dressing. During the pandemic they produced free gardening kits so that children could garden at home. They are now restructuring the organization to include a mobile food market that partners with schools and community centres to increase access to fresh produce for those in need.
The Fish Are In The Trees
…can be accessed anywhere at any time, on the “Carry the Spark” EP on Bandcamp!
It is a lyrically imaginative ballad that pays homage to the interconnectedness of all living things. The song title was inspired by a story from the West Coast of Canada where communities were trying to figure out why salmon were not returning to spawn upriver. An elder from one of these communities famously said, “the fish are in the trees.” It was a profound statement that speaks to the interconnectedness that most humans subconsciously neglect. Without conscious awareness of our interconnectedness, we can easily justify the most convenient approaches to natural resource management. Whether it's a backyard garden or an entire forest, we each have a responsibility that future generations depend on.
So what can you do today to break through the sub-conscious neglect? Intellectually, you can begin by looking up "Glyphosate Nova Scotia" and seeing what you find in your own backyard. Spiritually, you can begin by giving yourself permission to pause and sit in this community garden.
This song is dedicated to all the folks who continue to fight for a pesticide-free and spray-free Nova Scotia. It is dedicated to the harvesters and the gardeners, the stewards and the foresters who are able to see the bigger picture that we're all a part of. May we come together as individuals, industries and communities in the spirit of Netukulimk, AKA Two-Eyed Seeing.
The transcript or descriptive text for this piece can be found by touching the "Text" button in the bottom right hand corner of your screen in the "View the Art" section.
By day, George Woodhouse works for Parks Canada. By night (and weekends) he can be found writing songs and playing guitar with his band, George Woodhouse & The Public Service. Since forming in 2019, Woodhouse and his band has been riding a folk-rock wave across the HRM, delivering upbeat performances and heartfelt melodies to audiences young and old. Lyrically driven, soulfully sung, Woodhouse packs a punch of hope, grief, and love into an ever-expanding repertoire of songs infused with an East Coast sing-along-able sound. His debut full-length LP is due out this fall.
The EAC first joined the movement to ban pesticide use in the 1970’s with the Spruce Budworm (See Kate Phillip’s “Thing” Spray Days). In 2010 EAC worked with the other members of Pesticide-Free Nova Scotia (PFNS) to secure a provincial ban on the use of cosmetic pesticides by putting pressure on the government and getting citizens activated. This was a big win! But in 2013, PFNS conducted an audit of retail stores where pesticides would be available, and discovered that the ban wasn’t being regularly enforced - many restricted pesticides were still freely available to be purchased with no questions asked. The legislation also still allows certain pesticides to be used which are deemed safer, and the ban was never extended to pesticides that people might choose to use on their vegetable gardens. These loopholes have the potential to cause harm to our health and our environment, especially for people with environmental sensitivities. And then there are herbicides, which is a whole other issue...