Workday Recap: January 2019

It was a chilly but very productive day at the garden today, and we welcomed several new gardeners. Thanks to those who made it out!

We started by tidying the garden. We added mulch to beds, turned our (massive!) compost piles, and harvested winter crops. We even made our first donations—cabbages, and some surprise sweet potatoes! Awesome start to the new year!

We had a solid group and got a lot done, but the air was still brisk so we went inside for our meeting.

Dan demonstrated how to plant onion sets and potato eyes, and some of each were available to share and plant. We talked about Best Bets—now is the best time for a limited number of greens, such as spinach, cabbage, mustard greens, turnips, and lettuce. We also offered a quick refresher on Square Foot Gardening (a copy of our recommended book is available to share in the shed–please leave it there so we can all read it!). Now is the time to fertilize and replenish your garden bed with compost.

February will be the prime planting time for many other plants, so come ready!

Greenhouse Update

Bad news on the greenhouse: City guidelines will not currently allow us to have a standalone greenhouse like we were wanting. We can currently add a 2-foot “lean-to” style greenhouse (just for seedlings) attached to the shed, or we can talk to the City to see about getting a zoning variance. Volunteers took on each of these tasks and we will discuss further next workday. We can also use the grant money for other things. Come prepared to help us decide what we should do!

Social Media

Another hot topic that came up today was a way to communicate with all the gardeners. While you are encouraged to make friends with your garden neighbors and help each other out, so far we have not had a linked messaging application, email listserve, or similar to encourage communication among gardeners. Several people thought this would be helpful, so that’s our newest thing to try!

You should have received an email with a list of email addresses of all the gardeners. If you did not get an email, reach out via comment on the blog, on Facebook, or directly to Megan or Dan to see how to remedy this. Please do NOT post your email address or phone number directly on the blog comments, for your own security.

We also discussed several avenues to have a more streamlined conversation method. A few options are listed below, with pros and cons. Please be prepared to help us discuss what option is best for the garden as a whole at the next workday!

Type Pros Cons
Email List Simple to use;

everyone has an email address already;

compatible with all levels of technology

The “reply all” phenomenon can be frustrating;can clutter your inbox;shares email addresses with everyone
Facebook Messenger Already have a Facebook page for the group;

Easy to use;

Easy to chat to individuals as well as the group

Able to control what kind of notifications you receive

Privacy concerns, both with Facebook the company and with the group accessing individual pages;

Everyone has to download the app;

Other Messaging Apps such as Slack, WhatsApp, etc. Easy to use;

Easy to chat to individuals as well as the group

Able to control what kind of notifications you receive

More private (only moderator accesses contact information)

Everyone has to download the app;not every phone may be compatible

Special Thanks

Special Thanks go to Craig for tidying and organizing the shed! That’s no small job! Please remember to clean off your tools with the wire brush hanging by the door. This will both keep things tidy and prevent the spread of disease in our plants!

Our next workday will be 9-11 a.m. on February 9. See you there!

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Workday Recap – May 2016


Another hard-working group out for today’s workday! For those who couldn’t make it, here’s what we discussed.

  • Mulch- let’s use up the rest of our mulch! Please weed community areas and spread some mulch.
  • Fertilizer- you may have noticed that the newer garden beds aren’t quite as lush as the established beds. That’s ok! You are encouraged to use slow-release fertilizer to help feed the microorganisms that your plants need to grow. Organic or synthetic fertilizers are ok, so long as they are slow-release. You’re looking for the 3 numbers on the bag, which indicate how much nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium is in the fertilizers. Note: organic fertilizers are always slow-release.

fertilizer

Pesky insects- short answer: wear bug spray! More details

    • Chiggers: there is no reliable way to get rid of chiggers in the garden. The best we can do is personal protection. Wear bug spray. There is some in the shed for all to share.
    • Mosquitos: We’re in a great area for the blood-suckers. Our best prevention is killing them when they are young. See the shed for an example of a mosquito dunk used to kill the larvae in water. As for the adults, wear bug spray.
    • Fire ants: The ants are an invasive species and act like it! Best we can do is encourage them to leave our garden plots–try a combination ofdiatomaceous earth and Dead Man Jack’s spray on the mound.

     
    Otherwise, tend your plots and keep up the good work! See you next month!

    February Workday Recap

    We had an excellent showing on Saturday, with lots of new garden members. We assigned plots, got acquainted with the garden layout, began a few plantings, and did a bit of garden maintenance.

    • It’s too early to plant most things right now, but it’s a great time to plan your plot, start seedlings, and pick out some decorations (if you want them).
    • Ty is starting a “Tater Tire Garden” in the corner of the fence. Here’s hoping for lots of taters come spring!
    • We began the process to expand the garden to make room for new plots.
    • Scott Cherry has volunteered to create a new garden gate near the shed as we make a meeting area under the shade trees behind the garden.
    • We will be creating a native Texan wildfire garden beyond the preschool garden, in the open field. Work to begin soon.
    • The Girl Scouts will be building a water catchment system for the shed…when it’s a little warmer out.
    • Please check the signs at the compost piles to ensure you are composting the right materials.
    • Visit our Facebook page to connect with other gardeners, share recipes and tips, and share tips.
    • We took all the sprayers off the water hoses to protect them from freezing. When it is warm again, just reattach one to water your plot. (There should be one near each hose; if not, check the shed!)

    If you weren’t able to attend this workday, stop by the garden to get a feel for your plot, plan your garden, harvest any plants to survive the cold front, and pull any weeds you find.

    Keep an eye out for a full post detailing who has claimed which plot.

    Our next workday will be Saturday, March 21. See you there!

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