Meadow Mind: Cultivating the Urban Garden

Genine Lentine
6 Sessions »Saturdays, February 17–March 24

11am–2pm | Studio 21 + Campus Meadow | $295

No prerequisite. This class is open to all; new and more experienced gardeners will emerge with fresh ideas and skills. Our work in the garden will always include options that allow you to participate at whatever level of physical activity is comfortable.

Come dig in the fresh spring soil in the historic SFAI meadow, a sloping green haven at the northeast corner of campus, frequented by hummingbirds, hawks, and swallowtails, and home to a venerable California Buckeye, and an encompassing redwood. Over six Saturdays, we'll plant and care for vegetables, herbs, and flowers and explore such core garden practices as soil-building, plant care, seed starting, and pruning, and composting. As we take part in the rhythms of the garden, the garden will cultivate our own capacities for observation, empathy, and resilience.

Our class meetings will include collaborating on a garden project, as well as tending existing plantings throughout the meadow. Course readings will provide fundamental principles of gardening and permaculture, growing California native plants, gardening for wildlife, and extend connections to poetry, art, and science.

Each session will also include conversation springing from readings and observations, and a period of more solitary time as well, in which you can write, draw, make notes, meditate, or otherwise follow your own interests. In addition to the work we'll do as a group, you will receive individual guidance in starting or further developing your own garden. Optional garden hours will be offered outside of class time to allow for more time to develop class projects and practices.

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Genine Lentine is the author of Poses: An Essay Drawn from the Model (Kelly’s Cove, 2012) and Mr. Worthington's Beautiful Experiments on Splashes (New Michigan Press, 2010).  She is also co-author, with Stanley Kunitz of The Wild Braid: A Poet Reflects on a Century in the Garden (W.W. Norton, 2005). She received an M.S. in Theoretical Linguistics from Georgetown University, an M.F.A. in Poetry from New York University, and residencies from Montalvo Arts Center, and Hedgebrook, and University of Arizona Poetry Center.  She co-founded a thriving CSA in Virginia, and worked on the garden crew at Tassajara Zen Mountain Center. In 2017,  she'll also be teaching an interdisciplinary gardening course at St. Mary's College and a children's poetry and gardening camp at Montalvo Arts Center. She teaches writing and Contemporary Practice at the San Francisco Art Institute, and frequently holds class in the meadow.  

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