Berkeley has a long history of growing food for the creatures of Denver. In its early days, the entire neighborhood was an alfalfa farm that produced feed for the horses that pulled city streetcars. Over time, the land was developed into the city lots -- now tended by the urban farmers who supply the broccoli that fills the raw vegetable hors d'œuvre trays offered at art openings in the Tennyson Street Cultural District... As illustrated on the Denver Neighborhood Seed packet above, broccoli has always been big in Berkeley. While the neighborhood's annual production of 67 pounds pales in comparison to the 9 million tons grown in the People's Republic of China, it remains a favorite in the vegetable gardens surrounding the Oriental Theater.
Grown to share with close friends and creative types at cultural events, Berkeley broccoli plants are prized for their big heads and tight buds. Good side shoots continue to grow long after the center head has been harvested. Like the residents of the district, Berkeley broccoli grows best in cool weather and full sun.
More from our Kenny Be/Comics archive: "Cartoon yard-art garden at Pop's Garage in Lakewood: Kenny Be's Yard Arteology."
Keep Westword Free... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Denver with no paywalls.