It's hard to believe, what with the layer of snow covering the ground, but it's almost time for Slow Food St. Louis, Brick City Gardens and Schlafly Bottleworks to present their spring and summer film series, "Good Gardening - Good Food 2011."
Gut Check spoke with Frank LeBeau, founder of Brick City Gardens and longtime organic gardener and educator, about the series.
"I got involved because I wanted people to know that there are much better alternatives to conventional farming and gardening," LeBeau says. "With nearly a billion people across the globe now seriously malnourished and food safety and quality declining, the world is experiencing a major food crisis. Scientific studies show that certain organic methods can sustainably produce higher yields of food crops that are more nutritious, free of toxic chemicals and much friendlier to the environment."
The films range from documentaries about the history of organic gardening and farming to features about organic gardening trailblazers and how-to guides.
LeBeau hopes they combine to provide a better overall view of organic gardening and inspire viewers to try their hand. "I want people to take away the knowledge that it is possible to feed everyone on the planet healthy food and at the same time have a safe, natural and beautiful environment," he says. "I hope they'll be inspired by the pioneers who developed these organic methods and perhaps feel motivated to start a backyard garden of their own. I want them to know there is a viable alternative to the unhealthy and destructive practices of corporate food production."
What if you only have time to attend one film? Which should it be?
"All the films are relevant and informative, but Temple Grandin is an award-winning and especially moving story about a woman who overcame autism and gender bias to successfully champion the humane treatment of livestock animals," says LeBeau. "It's certainly the most entertaining film of the series."
All films begin at 7:15 p.m. in the Crown Room at Schlafly Bottleworks. Admission's free; donations are welcomed. Slow Food St. Louis offers film descriptions.
Monday, March 28 - A Farm for the Future and Farming With Nature Tuesday, April 5 - Slow Food Revolution Tuesday, April 19 - Pioneers of Organic Farming - Garden Song, Circle of Plenty, and Ruth Stout's Garden Video Monday, April 25 - Temple Grandin