Each year FoCuS sponsors a community potato patch. The idea came about as a result of farmers Eric and Christine Taylor (Outer Aisle Foods) asking their neighbors to lend a hand harvesting potatoes before the big storm ruined the crop. Friends and neighbors came to their rescue and received a meal and free potatoes for their efforts, but most importantly, everyone received the gift of community action and the feeling that together they could survive the storm.
Years later FoCuS still plans an annual potato patch. Its purpose remains the same—to learn together as a community how to plant, grow and harvest the simplest yet most life-sustaining of nature’s gifts. Every year there are obstacles to overcome, and we learn more and we continue to harvest great crops for local folks’ enjoyment. Potatoes are shared with all participants in the activity. Some potatoes are sold to farmers who do CSAs (community-supported agriculture) to help defray the costs of seed potatoes and equipment. Each year a share of potatoes goes to the harvesters and others who might be short on food through the winter. Potatoes are such a perfect food, rich in vitamins and minerals, and able to support life in the toughest of times. And each year a new patch of ground is opened up to a garden life after the humble potato was first to break ground.