Monday, September 19, 2016

September 17 at the Kitchen Garden

We had just about everyone at the garden on Saturday (except for Gabriela who was deep in applesauce making! We watered and weeded, cut back dead plants, staked the ever tilting tomatillos and cherry tomatoes, and had a good time together.

Some of the harvest butternut and acorn squash, eggplant, Black Krim and cherry tomatoes, tomatillos, cucumbers, plus a tray of greens to plant for a (hopeful) fall crop.

Linda H. and Iris (behind the camera) took out the old lettuces and planted baby spinach, kale, arugula and cilantro.

Els working on the tomatoes

Susan and Linda M. deep in discussion.

Mark outside the fence checking on some small squash.

Marcelo in the collard patch.

Laura and Blanca at the produce table.

Eggplants and cherry tomatoes are still coming!

Linda M and Els’ beautiful rainbow chard.

Monday, September 12, 2016

September 10th at the Garden

Els, Linda H, Marcelo, Mark, Blanca, Laura, and Gabriela endured the heat this past Saturday at the garden.

In addition to the usual watering, harvesting, and weeding (and trying to straighten some of the tomato and tomatillo plants!), Mark brought the weed whacker and worked on the garden borders. We also removed the lambs quarters, then Marcelo applied some newly sifted compost and used the broad fork to aerate the soil. Then we planted some greens that Els had--we don't know the English name, but Els tells us it's a mild and yummy green!

Food Pantry: We left two containers with cherry tomatoes (one red, one sungold) and several green peppers in the fridge for the food pantry (Molly, please let me know if you find  them and whether they made it alright through Wednesday; if possible, please leave the containers in the toolbox or keep them somewhere so we can reuse them).

Watering schedule:
Susan won't be able to water on Mondays anymore but she'll be doing Sundays instead. Schedule for this week so far (please let the core group of gardeners know about any changes or if you're able to fill any of the missing spots):
Sun: Susan
Mon: --
Tue: Gabriela
Wed: Iris/Linda H
Thu: Marcelo
Fri: --
Sat: Group

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Kitchen garden update - July 30


This Saturday's gardeners were Iris, Marcelo, Blanca, Laura, and Gabriela.

We continued watering, weeding and harvesting mother earth's beautiful and healthy bounty.

Bad bug: Squash bug eggs, nymph, and adult. If you see them, squish them!
We removed many squash leaves that were affected by white mold (likely powdery mildew) at the back by Oak St. Gabriela will be spraying a mixture of milk and water (recipe provided by Suzi Novak during our monthly classes, although it's best to use before an outbreak). We also saw some tiny eggs under one of the squash leaves and a white bug that turned out to be the aptly named squash bug. These are sap suckers; but the main reason why they are damaging is because as they feed they inject a toxic substance into the plant that causes it to wilt. More info here. I believe that, as long as we don't see them in large numbers, we should be fine by squishing any bugs or eggs we see around. We've also seen predator bugs (robber flies, I believe) that may be helping us keep pests in check (hopefully a sign that we're doing things right and attracting a diversity of life!)

Good bug: Robber flies have been seen at the garden and may be helping us keep pests in check.

We keep seeing signs of a larger critter chomping the crops. We initially thought it may be deer jumping up the fence at its lowest point, but on Sunday, Iris noticed some of her low-lying, ripe tomatoes eaten halfway through. She's convinced it's a groundhog or something similar, and she found plenty of breaches in the fence where they could be getting in. We're looking at whether this is something that we can repair, or whether we need to rebuild the fence, or part of it. If you have any ideas, please share them!

Chomped leaves and one of several potential entry points for groundhogs and such.

Monday, July 25, 2016

July 23rd at the Kitchen Garden

In spite of the heat wave, a large crowd gathered at the garden: Linda M, Els, Linda H, Iris, Blanca, Laura, Marcelo and Gabriela.

We continued watering, weeding, and harvesting--various squashes, zucchini (a huge one!), cucumbers, various greens, and the first peppers and tomatoes.

Marcelo planted the sage that Susan left in the garden (I have the container and will bring it back when Susan returns).

We also bought some more tomato cages and a "watering wand" that we hope will make watering much easier and effective while we look into feasibility of a drip irrigation system (again, if anybody wants to be part of this conversation, just let me know). It has a long handle (length can be adjusted) that allows watering close to the roots without having to bend. There are several spray patterns but only one or two are really suitable for watering. The small handle regulates water flow.

Watering schedule this week (**given the heat wave, additional watering would be really beneficial; if you can stop by and give the plants a soak, that would be much appreciated, and please let the group know so we're all aware**):
Monday: Iris
Tuesday: Gabriela
Wednesday: Iris/ Linda H
Thursday: Marcelo
Saturday: group

See you next week!


Sunday, July 17, 2016

July 16 at the Kitchen Garden

Present at the garden this week were Iris, Linda H, Blanca, Mark, Marcelo, Laura, and Gabriela.

Things continue to grow and mature, with lots of squash and greens, and some cherry tomatoes starting to ripen. This week we continued weeding, watering, pruning tomato plants and harvesting. We got plenty of collards for the food pantry and squash, lamb's quarters, and a few cherry tomatoes. Mark weeded and tidied up the external border.

We noticed a few plants seemed to have been chewed by some critter--maybe chipmunks or squirrels? Also, if you notice any weed with flowers, please remove it immediately to minimize seed production.

The watering schedule for next week:
Monday: Blanca
Tuesday: Gabriela
Wednesday: Iris/ Linda H
Thursday: Marcelo
Saturday: group

See you next week!