Workday Recap: Jan. 2021

New year — new garden projects! We had a frosty morning in the garden, with one major project—expanding the garden to make room for all our new members!

It’s a great “problem” to have, but most of our gardeners from last year are returning, plus we have several newbies who wanted to join. But we were out of plots!

Not anymore! We spent the morning with hammer and drill and a lot of teamwork to convert several of our experimental beds into formal garden plots!

Dan shows how the new garden beds should be constructed

When work is complete, we will have 10 new beds. Some will stay as community areas, but several are open to new gardeners.

Construction underway

We also took time to collect money from new and existing gardeners to reserve a plot. If you missed us this time, please attend in-person next month and bring your $35/plot donation! (Cash or check please)

Frosty cabbage

We also did some tidying up. It wasn’t a good day for planting because of the impending snow and freeze, but we discussed best bets for January. We even had some beautiful cauliflower and cabbages to harvest!

Now is the time to plan your plot for the year. Some crops take a long time until harvest, so plan ahead so you reserve space for other things. (For example, radishes are ready to harvest in as little as a month, but potatoes planted now won’t be ready until June!)

Good plants for January are onions, English peas (and similar varieties like snow or snap peas), and white potatoes. It’s a good time for root vegetables like carrots, turnips, and radishes. Also consider leafy greens such as leeks and spinach.

A great group of gardeners

See you at the next workday, February 13 from 9-11!

Grow and Share is Growing…Again!

Bring your hammers, bring your drills, but most of all bring yourself, to our next garden workday this Saturday, January 9, from 9-11 am. We will be building 10 new garden plots to provide space for new gardeners. This is also the time outside gardeners can procure a plot for this year. $35 for a 10 x 4 foot space. Join us and help build for tomorrow.

Workday Recap: Dec. 2020

What a year of gardening! Despite everything, we grew and donated more than 2,570 pounds of produce! Thank you for doing your part to help your community!

Now is the time for returning gardeners to choose their plots! Returning gardeners in good standing can have up to two plots. If you want a specific plot someone already has, consider talking to them: maybe you can trade!

We will open the garden to new gardeners at our January meeting. You must be present at our January workday to choose a plot. Please bring $35 cash or a check per plot.

Of course, gardeners are always welcome to help on our community plots.

This month’s workday focused on cleanup. The frost has given us a lot to do! Our summer and fall crops needed to be removed, and we needed to care for our overwintering plots and winter vegetables.

We also had a lot to shred to improve our compost! Thank you again, Doug and Mike, for your shredding expertise.

A broccoli was taken out of this plot. Please do not harvest other people’s crops.

We had several large vegetables removed from their plots. Please do not harvest other people’s crops. If you see someone harvesting another person’s plot, please do speak up and remind them of this rule.

However, we do know that unfortunately some people may be hungry this season, and we are unable to prevent all thefts. So please just be courteous to your fellow gardeners and respect our plots so we have more to donate.

We had a lot to clean up in the garden

Please also be careful with our hoses and faucets. With the cold weather, our faucets are more likely to leak. Please be sure to disconnect them and wind them carefully!

See you at our next workday, Saturday, January 9 from 9-11 a.m. Because of the pandemic, we will be working outside. Please dress warmly!

Gardeners are also invited to Christmas events at The Nor’Kirk, including a winter festival next weekend and Christmas Eve outdoor services. Check the Nor’Kirk’s Facebook page @thenorkirk for service information.

FREEZE WARNING!

Our first anticipated “hard freeze” warning is Sunday night through Tuesday Morning. This is the very last chance to harvest any remaining warm season crops. Pick ALL peppers, okra, eggplant, tomato, and basil. Please disconnect all water hoses, sprayers, and water towers. Winter crops, (cabbage, kale, broccoli, cauliflower swiss chard) and root crops (beets, carrots, radish) should be fine, but you will want to cover more delicate crops like lettuce, and peas with a “breathable” frost blanklet.

Workday Recap: November 2020

It was a beautiful day to be at the garden!

Our main focus was harvesting! We had a lot to harvest! Now is the time to remove any of your summer crops—we anticipate a freeze sometime soon, and the cold temperatures will zap your plant and turn your harvest into inedible jelly. Remember you can donate whatever you don’t need — area food banks really need the help!

Check out the mega squash! 23 pounds! Wow!

We had a bountiful harvest from just community plots and the gardeners who were able to attend. Thank you!

Our cabbage and broccoli crops are loving the cool weather.

Now is a good time to plant cover crops like black-eyed peas or plan for winter crops. Make sure to turn your soil and add compost.

We also worked hard on mulching our paths. It’s a constant effort but helps keep our garden tidy!

Volunteers help with harvest and mulching paths

Please remember to DRAIN your water tower and disconnect the hoses. When we get a freeze, any connected hoses on these towers will burst, ruining the tower. We put a lot of work into these this year — help us keep them around!

Disconnect and drain your water tower

Please also be mindful of hoses and faucets as it gets cold. Do water your plants — just be sure to help us maintain our water system!

Disconnect faucets and hoses to prevent freeze damage

We will select new plots in January, so plan ahead now! Please continue to follow safe covid guidelines. We are currently planning to meet outdoors December 12. Please wear a mask and dress for the cool weather.

Thanks to Mike for our first Garden Wine, created with Grow & Share grapes!

Garden Workday & Harvest Celebration

Join us for our garden workday, Saturday, November, 14th from 9-11 AM. We will harvest the last of the summer crops, and talk about our fall and winter gardening…Then join us Saturday evening for a bonfire Harvest Celebration from 6:30-8:00 PM. We will have samples of our “homegrown” Spanish grape wine, s’mores, and more. Bring a chair, some garden recipes, and any family or friends. See you around the campfire!

Harvest Celebration

Celebrate your year at the garden!

Saturday, November 14th

6:30 pm to 8:00 pm

Join us in the garden for a Harvest Celebration! We will mark a successful gardening season with an outdoor bonfire and s’mores.

Please bring a guest, your chair, your drink, and your mask for this socially distanced, outdoor event. Bring six copies of your favorite garden recipe to share with your fellow gardeners in our recipe swap. How did you prepare all that okra?

Come sit and relax fireside after our Saturday workday (in the evening). Enjoy a crisp Autumn night as we discuss the harvest year we are completing and develop plans for the Grow and Share Garden in 2021. Plan to share your best garden stories. Tell us about your favorite crop. What was a success and what was your biggest failure? We hope you will be able to join us!

Remember, we will assign garden plots on Saturday, January 9, so this is a good time to plan ahead with your fellow gardeners!