Thursday, August 5, 2021

pop-up native plants sale August 8

There'll be a native plants pop-up sale at Roots & Wings CSA this Sunday, August 8, 9 - 10 am, in the parking lot behind South Church.  

Check it out! 

VarietyCommon NamesQuantitiesContainer Type
Anemone canadensisCanada anemone12Plug
Bouteloua gracilisBlue Grama50Plug
Ceanothus americanusNew Jersey Tea3Plug
Chelone lyonii 'Hot Lips'Turtlehead 'Hot Lips'15Plug
Conoclinium coelestinumBlue Mist Flower17Plug
Coreopsis lanceolataLanceleaf tickseed8Plug
Coreopsis lanceolata 'Baby Gold'Lanceleaf tickseed 'Baby Gold'12Plug
Elymus HystrixBottlebrush grass20Plug
Eupatorium fistulosumJoe Pye Weed16Plug
Geranium maculatumWild geranium1Plug
Geum triflorumPrairie Smokeflower4Cup
Liatris spicataDense Blazing Star1Plug
Lonicera sempervirensCoral honeysuckle32Plug
Packera AureaGolden GroundSel1Cup
Phlox stoloniferaCreeping phlox17Plug
Pycnanthemum tenuifoliumNarrow Leaf Mountain Mint41Plug
Rudbeckia fulgida var. fulgidaOrange Coneflower7Plug
Schizachyrium scopariumLittle BlueStem18Plug
Scutellaria incanaHoary Skullcaps88Plug
Solidago flexicaulisZigzag goldenrod12Plug
Sorghastrum nutansYellow Indiangrass38Plug
Symphyotrichum novae-angliaeNew England Aster10Plug
Symphyotrichum novae-angliae 'Purple Dome'Aster ‘Purple Dome’12Plug
Thermopsis villosaAaron's rod14Plug

$3 each for plugs
$5 each for cups

Tuesday, August 3, 2021

Dobbs Ferry Pollinator Pathway medallion

Get your Dobbs Ferry Pollinator Pathway medallion at Roots & Wings CSA on Sunday, August 8, 9 - 10 am behind South Church! 

This 5 1/2 inch medallion is now available for you to display in your Dobbs Ferry native garden. The medallion has two small holes so it can be attached to a stake or a fence. For the immediate future, medallions are available from Kathy Dean at The cost is $10 per medallion. The Sustainability Task Force is in the process of adding content to the Sustainable Dobbs Website regarding the pollinator pathway project  We hope to have that info available in September 2021.

How do I qualify to be a Dobbs Ferry Pollinator Pathway Garden?

Any pesticide-free garden that provides food and habitat with pollinator-friendly native and non-native plants is a pollinator garden. Get started with just a plant or two! You can grow your garden gradually. This is not about size - it is about a commitment moving forward. Residents can add anywhere from one pollinator-friendly tree or plant, to a small pollinator garden, to a full meadow.

We only have three requirements to purchase and display a medallion:

1.       Go pesticide/chemical free

2.       Plant native plants

3.       Rethink your lawn (consider organic fertilizer; leave grass clippings on your lawn/mulch mow leaves; convert some lawn area to native plants; leave some leaves in beds/non-lawn areas for overwintering insects)

Special thanks to our pollinator pathway friends in Hastings-on-Hudson and Ardsley who supplied all the know how we needed to design and implement this project.

Happy Planting!

Wednesday, July 7, 2021

CSA season 5~

We're delighted that it's fresh, local and organic veggie season again! The below pix shows one of our members growth over the years : )  


weeding/harvesting in-between showers

We wound up working in shifts in the garden today . . . in between rain showers! Donna, Jonathan, Marcelo and Akiko were the first shift. As Jonathan reported earlier, he and Donna spent a little over an hour weeding, fixing the flagstone path.

Els and I arrived later. Aside from the mandatory stint of weeding (including some work on the raspberry patch which we think could use some pruning), we decided to see if one of the large metal trellises I had schlepped over would work to extend our cucumber support. First we needed to move the sprawling volunteer cherry tomato near the wooden trellis, which none of us has had the heart to pull out. We decided to spare it once more and moved it down to the end of the bed to the side of the cilantro (which we are hanging onto for the seeds). We'll see if it survives and, if so, if it produces yummy tomatoes. Here's the new spot:

We then positioned the trellis and think it has promise for letting the cucumbers really grow. It will need some stabilizing from Jonathan and/or Marcelo!

Here are two views:

Otherwise, Els turned the compost and harvested some purslane.  

We call this a combo weeding/harvesting as the purslane is sprouting up all over the place (likewise lambsquarters--both very nutritious but invasive). I pulled some wild grape vines and another vine off the St. John's Wort in the pollinator garden. It is now in bloom and, on a less rainy day, it will be swarming with happy bees.

The lettuce is starting to come up in the lasagna bed. This is great news as it may be time to pull out the older lettuce in the other plots if it's getting bitter. With that ending, it will be good to have another crop coming up. Our haul for the food pantry will likely be smaller this coming week. Next up will be cucumbers and tomatoes, but those will take a while!

a panoramic overview

On Saturday, Els, Jonathan, Donna, Judy, Blanca, Laura and I met at the garden. Jonathan took the wonderful panoramic shot above.

Els planted the entire lasagne bed with four rows of little gem lettuce. The seedlings she brought have done really well in the center bed, and Judy and I will harvest them for the food pantry on Tuesday. Hopefully the lasagna bed will bring another crop.

We worked on weeding and getting invasive vines off the fence. Blanca did a masterful job going outside the fence and ripping out the wild grape, mugwort, etc. in the corner of the garden.

Jonathan brought his toolbox and strengthened the structure for the cucumbers and then removed some deep rooted grass by the Oak St. fence. We planted more of the little broccoli seedlings in the center left bed. Donna continued her work beautifying the entrance, adding a layer of compost and mulch around the plants. And then, of course, there was lots of weeding . . more fun when done with a friend, as Judy and Laura are demonstrating:

Judy weeded the beans and we added compost and straw.Els harvested some peas and we were amazed to see some tomatoes already:

Since Saturday, I've been back a few times to put some water in the bird bath and water the new plantings or areas that aren't irrigated by our system. I got another bale of straw from the Buy Nothing Rivertowns FB group . . just in time as we had just finished the bale we had.

There may be more, but that's what I remember!

See you next week!


Welcome, pollinators and people!

 Donna continued her amazing beautification of the entrance and around the fence. Being greeted by lavender, blooming thyme, sage, anise hyssop, tall mullein spears, etc. is really lovely!!

The pollinator garden is blooming madly! Here's some milkweed and yarrow. The St. John's Wort is about to burst into bloom. Thanks to Susan for this wonderful and important part of our garden!

Repurposing with a purpose

We had a super busy day at the garden on Saturday, with people working hard from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m and a lot was accomplished! If I remember correctly, our crew was Judy, Laura, Marcelo, Andrew, Els, Donna, Jonathan, and me.

We removed the kale from the Oak Street bed. We were able to harvest some for the food pantry. The kale left behind many small white flies in the spot where we were planting tomatoes. We tried spraying with the BT from a couple of years ago (recommended then by Natalia the farmer), though we aren't sure it is still viable. We planted at least 13 tomatoes--many donated by Fable Farm and some that I had grown from seedlings my neighbor donated to us. Andrew spoke to Tom (of Fable Farm) at the CSA pick up the next day about the white flies, and Tom gave him a spray that he says will help. (Thanks, Andrew and Tom!) We spread straw around the tomato plants to help the soil stay moist and to keep down weeds.

Building on our love of repurposing items that would otherwise be thrown out, we made two structures for viney plants to grow on in one of the center beds and at the sunny end of the lasagna bed. We planted two cucumber seedlings that Laura and Blanca had grown in the center bed and two carnival squash seedlings in the lasagna bed.

We harvested and enjoyed some strawberries and noticed that the raspberries are starting to come in. Donna planted a tomato and cucumber in Sam and the kids' bed. 

Freecycle, Upcycle, Recycle

 A bounty of free bricks and pavers make fantastic edging material! 


A few of Judy's gorgeous photos—flowering kale, a carrot green forest, and Els' red lettuce . . .


Tuesday, April 27, 2021

Hello Everyone!

Yesterday was an amazing day at the garden! The weather was spectacular and we had ten people geared up to work. In addition to current stalwarts Els, Donna, Jonathan, Sam, Lauran, Blanca, Andrew, and myself, we were so happy to see Marcelo who has a few Saturdays off! Perfect timing! Darah, who discovered the Kitchen Garden a few weeks ago while walking her dog, joined us for the first time, and we anticipate another new volunteer in the future—Jenna, who walked by and was intrigued to learn what we were up to and if she could join in (of course!)

Sooooo, we accomplished so much and the entry area is truly transformed. First we made a brush pile outside the garden by the compost structure from all the detritus of branches, etc. on top of the dirt pile and removed all the weeds. We watered the cardboard we had put down a few weeks ago to start killing the grass and weeds and mark the site for some lasagna gardening. We started with a layer of compost that I had brought from home, topped with a deep layer of soil (basically, the entire dirt pile), covered with more compost that Judy had brought a few weeks back, and topped with chopped up leaves. Thus the layered "lasagna" bed. 

It looked good, but we were worried that the sides would melt away in the rain since there was nothing to contain it. Els disappeared and soon reappeared toting a tree limb. She and Andrew headed off on another search, and soon we had a bordered bed! Els topped it all with the weathered burlap Dave had removed from the fence. Credit to Els for the idea and inspiration!

The unsightly dirt/brush pile is now gone and we have a new bed. And here's the new flat, clear area for our shed and whatever other purposes we come up with! Els already planted beans along the fence line next to Zion.

Beyond this monumental accomplishment, there was more:

• Marcelo, Andrew, and Blanca did major work on the compost. They moved the contents of the center bin into the left bin and sifted out a wheelbarrow full of ready compost.

• Marcelo and Jonathan set up the timer for the irrigation system and we ran it to make sure it was working.

• Marcelo committed to organizing the big bin (and we're excited that we'll have more storage room once we get the shed, so everything should be easier to find)

• Darah set to work getting the pollinator garden in order, joined by Donna.

• Kids in the garden: A new initiative! Last week Sam brought eight kids (ages 4-5, I think?) to the garden and he and Donna helped them get gardening. They were able to work on Sam's bed and each one got to take home an anise hyssop. It sounds like a great success, which will be repeated every week. We discussed ideas like having the kids taste and smell all the herbs, bring food scraps from home and learn about composting, apply our homemade compost to their plot this week, and plant a variety of vegetables (starting with lettuce) that they can observe, nurture, munch, take home, and/or give to the food pantry.

• Naturally, we did the usual weeding, harvesting (some kale, cilantro), and hanging out.

The mesclun mix is popping up, but so far we don't see any signs of the green or red lettuces we planted. Hopefully by next week, we will. The carrot tops are getting bigger and bushier but the carrots are still small.

Sunday, April 4, 2021

Thumbs Up for Fences!

We were thrilled to see our fence all secure with holes closed up and sagging posts replaced. 

What a relief to be groundhog proof. Thanks to Dave Person for the great and speedy job! He'll be back to work on the gate some more as well as to tighten up the fence on the Oak St. side of the garden.

We sent him a big thumbs up! 

We took out all the rest of the chickweed and cover crop, and left it root side up to dry into future green manure. We covered the bare earth with cardboard. Andrew turned the compost; Donna checked the perimeter to see what survived the winter, and transplanted some yarrow out there. We set the bird bath upright and filled it with water. I added stones for bees to land on. This keeps them from drowning.

We were inspired to do a big clean up. We straightened up all the tomato cages and made them into four neat stacks instead of being a huge mess. We put the most funky of them back in the shed.

• Next Saturday, we can plant the lettuce seeds and possibly the beans if it is warm enough. 

• If anyone is collecting food scraps at home, please consider bringing a pailful to add to the KG compost. 

Have a great week!

Tuesday, March 16, 2021

First time back in the garden!

Andrew, Judy, Blanca, Els, and I met at the garden this morning. Sam and his son, Nico, stopped by for a visit, and Nico got to feel the fuzzy buds on the pussy willow and sample some arugula and spinach straight from the garden. It was a cool morning, but working in the sun, we felt quite warm, and it was good to get our hands in the dirt!

We admired the greens that had survived the cold winter, and Andrew turned the compost. Then we decided to concentrate on removing the chickweed that is growing everywhere and to cover the newly empty spots with cardboard. We discovered that the carrots planted in the spring, while teeny tiny, are actually quite sweet. Hopefully they will keep growing to a more useful size.

We inspected the fence, which has a number of very loose posts on the driveway side plus at least one big gap in the fencing. (All that in addition to the breached spots on the Zion side.) We can't start our spring crops until we have a secure fence. This is our first priority. 

We'll meet again next Saturday morning. Have a great week!