Saturday, July 9, 2011

Brief update on Oak Park's war on veggies for week ending July 9th

It's been a full week since I last updated on Oak Park's "War on Veggies", so it's time to recap this week's developments.

First, I stopped by Julie Bass's house on Thursday just to see for myself what all the fuss was about.* I didn't have a camera, but Julie herself posted a photo of her front yard earlier that day, saving me the trouble. Surf over to the entry to see for yourself.

Here's what the beds look like from the sidewalk (posted last Saturday).

Thanks, Julie, for posting those photos. I hope you don't mind my hotlinking borrowing them to illustrate this post!

Personally, I think there's nothing wrong with her front yard. In fact, I think it looks better than her neighbor's lawns, which the July sun has turned dry and yellow. While I think I know what the city of Oak Park's problem is, if I didn't have any preconceived notions, I wouldn't understand why they are objecting.

In other news, Sue Ann Reed from Care2 commented on my first post on the issue with the following.

I saw your blog post about Julie Bass and the ridiculous idea that she is facing criminal charges and potential jail time for growing a garden in her own yard.

The folks from the Urban Homesteading Facebook page have set up a petition on Care2 and we would love your help spreading the word.

Here's the link to the petition:
I promised to post that link the next time I updated on the issue, so, to quote the Emperor of Austria-Hungary from "Amadeus," there it is. Of course I signed, and I urge all of you reading to do so, too.

Other people besides Julie and I have started blogging about this issue. Julie herself published a guest post from Sundari Kraft of Eat Where U Live. Sundari had earlier published an entry to her own blog, Front Yard Gardens vs. a Lack of Common Sense the same day I first posted about Oak Park's "War on Veggies". Sundari agrees with me about the esthetics of the garden.
The vegetable are not unruly or untended — in fact, it’s one of the tidiest raised-bed gardens I’ve seen in a long time.
It's a great post, and you should read it.

Finally, the same day Julie published Sundari's guest post, Urban Homestead Diaries posted In Oak Park Michigan it is Illegal to Grow Veggies in your Front Yard, Seriously. As you read, they were the ones who set up the petition mentioned above. As of the day of the post, 500 people had signed the petition.

As for the rest of the story, read Julie Bass's blog. She has more to say on the matter than I could possibly summarize in a "brief update!"

*My commute takes me through Oak Park, so I didn't have to go far out of my way to do this.


  1. Thanks for linking to the petition. It's now gone from 500 signatures to almost 22,000.

    -- Sue Anne Reed
    Care2 Communications Manager

  2. My pleasure. Glad to help the cause.