Saturday, March 21, 2020

Resources for COVID-19

I wanted to share a resource with you all that can help right now.

A friend and colleague of mine, pediatric neurologist Dr. Maya Shetreat has created a series of video lessons on using food, herbs and supplements to support immunity, lungs and stress levels. It is free of charge, and very well researched. She is also the author of The Dirt Cure, one of my favorite books on children’s health. 

Here’s the link: 

As for me, my part in this pandemic is outside. I’ve got 3 Mount Kisco-based garden projects that are continuing even if schools and child care centers are closed. Being outside, with hands in the soil and faces in the sun seems to be a good place to be. Here’s a good piece about that:

And it is easy to “socially distance” outdoors in big community garden projects.

As our economy collapses from this pandemic, we will need to relocalize and decentralize our food. 

Your nearby food pantry will appreciate freshly grown food in the months ahead.

If you have a sunny spot where you live, consider growing some food. Its easier than you think!

Stay well,

Susan Rubin 

Sunday, November 10, 2019

Good night, garden.

We put the garden to bed over the last few weeks. The water is off and the soil is covered with fresh cover crop, compost, chopped vegetation, and/or straw. Only the kale and some of the herbs are hardy enough for the cold weather that has begun. We have a new compost structure that will serve us well. 

It was a great season with many vegetables and herbs harvested for the food pantry and lots of good fellowship in the garden on Saturday mornings. We offered each other advice and encouragement, brainstormed challenges that came up, worked harder while we took turns going on vacation, and enjoyed the bounty of the earth. Working together in this beautiful garden is a real joy, and we invite anyone interested in joining us to stop by the garden some Saturday morning in the spring!

Monday, September 16, 2019

July in the Kitchen Garden

"Things are going great at the garden ... lots of food to donate to the pantry and everything is going wild ... tomatoes, cukes, beans, herbs, etc. with more greens planted for a fall harvest!"  - Iris Hiskey Arno, Roots & Wings Kitchen Garden

This summer we have nine kitchen gardeners hard at work. We’ve provided the food pantry with peas, kale, cucumbers, lettuce, and spices (sage, mint, oregano, dill, and mint) so far. Our tomatoes and tomatillos are beginning to come in, and our spice garden is constantly producing. 

One of our members donated an arched wooden trellis and we are growing cucumbers up and over it. Tomato plants were donated by Farmer Tom of the CSA and seeds and seedlings were donated by kitchen garden members. We have a thriving pollinator garden along the top of the stone wall by the street, outside the garden fence. Here echinacea (pink coneflowers), St. John’s Wort, yarrow, and milkweed not only provide a lovely splash of color but also make a wide variety of native bees very happy. We continue to maintain the pathways with wood chips from trees that were trimmed or cut down around the property—it’s an ongoing battle with crabgrass!

We work hard on our compost, which reflects our belief in permaculture and also nurtures our soil and plants. Unfortunately, the compost structure, which has stood us in good stead for a long time, is getting old and rickety and we hope to replace it soon. Likewise a section of our fence is sagging and overwhelmed by weeds. It provides neither the needed windscreen for young seedlings, nor a good space for vertical gardening. Replacing it is another needed improvement for the garden.

We gather to work together every Saturday morning, roughly from 10-12, and visitors of all ages are welcome to stop by, see what we are doing, and lend a hand if they like.

A shoutout and many thanks to Roots & Wings for this wonderful space!

Monday, April 15, 2019

It's great to be back in the garden with friends!

We've met for several weeks now--getting started with spring clean up of the beds, adding compost, adding more wood chips to the paths, reworking the compost bins, and having lots of discussions of what, where, and when to plant various crops. It's great to be back in the garden with our friendly and collaborative group! 

So far, we have three rows of peas growing up a homemade trellis plus seedlings of kale, radicchio, cilantro, spinach, lettuce, mache, herbs, and scallions in various spots. Every weekend involves some planning, rethinking, hard labor, good conversation and a few laughs.

We're generally there from 10 a.m. to noon, so stop by, see what we are up to, and lend a hand if you feel like it!