Tuesday, July 28, 2020

heirloom tomatoes of all shapes, sizes, and colors

As we get into the heat of the summer, the tomato, tomatillo and tomato plants are getting heavy with fruit. This has required us to work on staking and re-staking them so they don't topple over. This past Saturday, we harvested eggplants, cucumbers, yellow squash, broccolini and a little lettuce as well as mint, sage, oregano, and lemon balm for the food pantry. 

Thanks to the incredible generosity of Natalia Prakhina (of Earth Nurture Farm), we are harvesting heirloom tomatoes of all shapes, sizes, and colors as well.

As we do every week, we turned the compost and weeded--who knew that the best place to grow grass was in a garden bed, not a lawn?!  Soon we will pull out the rest of the crops that are finished and begin planting for a fall harvest.

Donna has inspired us to clean up and beautify the garden and the surrounding space. This week we moved some of our abundant thyme, sage, and anise hyssop to the area along the path to the gate. With careful tending, we hope it will flourish there. We also have two mulleins relocated by the entrance, which we hope will grow into tall flowering guardians of the garden.

Monday, July 13, 2020

The kitchen garden is really lush right now.

Many of us gathered today (masked and keeping social distances) to clear an area that had become a spot to throw whatever we weren't using. It's now a lovely open space, which we can use for more garden beds or for socializing, when that's feasible.

Our pollinator garden along the Oak Street wall  is not only beautiful with flowering milkweed, echninacea, and yarrow, but it's also alive with bees—right now, they are all over the plentiful yellow blooms on the St. John's Wort. 

We are growing kale, eggplants, tomatoes, cucumbers, lettuce, squash, tomatillos, onions, mint, lemon balm, sage, oregano, thyme, beans, broccolini. So far, we have harvested lettuce, bok choy, beans, broccolini, and herbs for the food pantry. As the summer goes on, we'll be donating onions, squash, cucumbers, eggplants, tomatoes, tomatillos, cucumbers, and herbs. 

Thankfully, after all our work on the fence and gate, the groundhog seems to have found other spots for nourishment. (Fingers crossed!)

Spring at the Kitchen Garden

Gardening in the time of social distancing can still be fun! Dario (weeding the raspberries) and Akiko spontaneously gave the thumbs up sign and they, plus Laurie, said to mention they are smiling behind their masks.

Donna is almost hidden by the high cover crop that has been adding nitrogen to the soil since the spring. Some of it is blooming—white pea flowers and crimson clover flowers provided a cover crop Mothers’ Day bouquet. 

Natalia bringing us seedlings, lettuce and onion seedlings on their first day in the ground, a variety of other seedlings (bok choy, sprouting broccoli, kale, napa cabbage) protected from insects with a cover we'll keep on for a few weeks, and Marcelo in the compost
structure, strengthening the wire divider.