Monday, May 31, 2010
Our New Weed Compost
As some of you may have noticed, the gazebo has been dismantled and removed from the garden. In its place we are starting our new weed compost. In the past we’ve always taken the weeds to the compost at the city landfill but that has always proven to be a pain as we don’t always have a volunteer with the wheels to do so. So I figured why not try and compost the weeds ourselves.
So…all weeds, from now on, should be deposited on top of the little hill where the gazebo used to reside. Some of you may not have seen the gazebo; it was up on the little hill between the north and south gardens. The buckets will still remain at the front of the shed for easy access to everyone - the only difference is that everyone will dump their own weeds. This compost is for weeds ONLY. We are composting this just for the sake of composting. It will not go back into the garden plots. All other organic matter should still be going into the regular compost. ie, grass clippings with no seeds, any cuttings or other vegetable matter from your garden bed.
On the topic of the weeds, all gardeners are to maintain a two to three foot perimeter around their plot reasonably free of weeds. Although we try to regularly weedeat (see below), the dandelions and others need to be taken up root and all.
Weed eating of the common areas of the garden will begin this week. Please ensure that the area around your garden box is free of rocks, twigs, wood scraps, twigs and other things can cause the cutting cord to tangle. Such items may also become dangerous projectiles. Please rake the weed cuttings and put them in the new weed composting area where the gazebo was located. Please do not leave the clippings on the ground or in buckets around the shed.
Individual gardeners will be responsible for removing grass growing through slats in the sides of the garden boxes as the weed eater doesn't like to climb walls.
Thank you for your help and cooperation in this matter and an even bigger thank you to Rita (plot#10) for taking on this huge task.
Just so everyone knows, we do have some dirt on site available to top up beds or add to any side containers you may have by your plot. There is a pile, being taken over by weeds and grass on the north side of the greenhouse. The other pile, while it lasts is in the south garden in front of the big beds.
Although I realize it is a personal preference, I notice that many gardeners do not wear gloves when working in the garden. I suggest wearing gloves to all gardeners as a matter of personal safety and hygiene as things may not always be as clean as you think they are.
I’m touching base with the last of the gardeners and hope to have the task assignments done for this weekend. I do have a couple of projects right now and I’m wondering if anyone is interested. All hours spent go towards your 16 hours of volunteer time:
1.Person to cut and paint plywood for lids for water barrels (we supply materials only – no saw)
2.Person to rebuild bulletin board on outside of shed. Creative design encouraged and welcomed. (we supply materials)
3.The water barrels behind the shed have holes in them. Anyone have an idea on how to fix them? And if so, would you like to repair them?
4.Creative and artistic person to make up the plot signs for the south garden similar to the existing ones in the north garden. (we supply wood and paint)
5.Person to build frames to shore up rhubarb on sloped hill in north garden. We want to use the leftover pieces of timber from the south garden beds. We have a design idea but are open to other suggestions.
If anyone is interested in any of these tasks, please contact me at the DUGS email: email@example.com
Wednesday Night Workbee
We need to get the Plant a Row bed in the south garden tilled and planted. We also will have some weed eating to do and possibly some shelf building for the greenhouse. There is also that big pile of dirt still waiting to be moved into the big square bed(south garden.
Thank you to those of you that have been showing up for the work bees. Your time spent there is always greatly appreciated.
Friday, May 14, 2010
THANKS to those who showed up for the work bee on Wednesday night. With their hard work, we were able to get the compost pile turned and ready to go and as well another one started. On the topic of the compost pile, although the pile is for all the gardeners to use, we ask that you are conscientious in your use as it is all we have for now and we want there to be enough for all. Most of the beds are in very good condition soil wise and most gardens had compost added to them last year. The exception to this would be some of the newer beds in the south garden and I plan to have that taken care of on Saturday, our next work bee...
WORK BEES On Saturday, May 15th from 8am-12pm, I will be holding another work bee. We have lots of toiling, tilling, digging and dirt moving to do so if you are able to help it will be greatly appreciated. Hours worked at work bees are applied directly toward your 16 hours of volunteer work in the garden (over the growing season) that we ask of our gardeners as part of their membership. I will be posting a sheet on the back door of the shed with everyone's name so that you will be able to keep track of any hours that you work in the garden. I will also be working on a list of individual duties for those of you that are not able to make the work bees.
WATER The work order for the water has been put in to the city and we hope that by next weekend we should have that part of the garden functioning. The north garden is relatively simple to deal with as far as hooking up hoses goes, but the south garden is a little more involved and I am likely going to have to show everyone from that area how to deal with that. However, until the water is hooked up, I can't show you. I did try to explain it last year in a blog post and you can click here to read that post. I think it's probably easier to learn "hands-on".
Typically most of you will water with a watering can. It will be someones task to keep the water barrels full and we suggest that you use the water from those barrels to water your plants. The cold water from the hose can be really shocking to the roots of plants. Your plants will appreciate it. I mean really, whens the last time you enjoyed a cold bath...:)
DUMP RUNS Is there anyone out there with a truck who would be interested in doing dump runs for the garden? This would count as volunteer hours. Mostly it would involve taking weeds to the city compost, as we cannot compost them in our small on site compost pile, and perhaps the occasional bag of garbage or prunings from early season clean-ups. If there is anyone out there interested it would be great if you could help out. Please email if you can.
In other news not related directly to the garden, I found a great link for building Bumblebee Houses. It would be a great and relatively simple project for kids and even better if you could convince a willing member of the springtime Bumblebee population to occupy it. :)
There are some great gardening oriented workshops listed here on the Foodscapers website. Heidi Marion, formerly of Wild Blue Yonder Farms, gardened with us last year and was a huge contributor to our Plant A Row program. It was more like 'Plant an Entire Garden Bed' in her case :). Anyway, she has a green thumb no matter where she operates and has an interesting website. Check it out.
If anyone has anything garden oriented or something you think other gardeners may find interesting that you would like to see posted here on the blog, please let me know and I'll see what I can do. Also, if there are ever any questions or concerns about the garden itself, feel free to contact me, Kathryn, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
I think that's it for now. I hope to see you all at the work bee tomorrow!