2012 Community Garden at EcoHouse Begins
One of our wonderful Green Venture community gardeners is going to be blogging for us this summer. Here is her first blog:
In March a new growing season began with previous and new volunteers. Welcome to all!! Our volunteers enrich our organization by bringing skills not affordable and not available. Volunteering is a very special activity which gives and receives. Volunteers may be looking to connect on a deeper level with the people in their community by donating their time to an organization and sometimes finding new purpose and direction in their lives.
Green Gardening Tip: Starting Seeds
At the end of March, volunteers started seedlings in the EcoHouse solarium (room with lots of windows and a glass roof). Starting seedlings’ means the seeds are planted inside in small pots to germinate. Some vegetables are started inside and then planted outdoors when the weather becomes warmer. There are three main reasons for this:
- Plants like the heat but need a long time to grow fruits, like peppers and tomatoes. By starting those inside they are ready to fruit in the summer when it is nice and hot.
- Seeds can be hard to start (like parsley) so growing them in a controlled space helps to get them started.
- Plants like cooler temperatures but not freezing (like cabbage and Brussels sprouts). Starting them early inside allows us to get bigger plants outside when temperatures are still cool.
Many seeds can be planted right into the ground like beans, cucumbers, carrots and beets. At the beginning of April peas were planted in the Community Garden.
Veggie Talk: Peas, the Eco-friendly vegetable
Research shows that peas provide the soil with important benefits. They help to get nitrogen in the soil so we don’t need to use synthetic fertilizers. After the harvest, you can leave the roots in the soil to help increase nitrogen levels. Because of these benefits added to the soil from the pea plant, it’s advised to rotate their location with other crops such as broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage or Brussels sprouts. This also decreases pest problems.
Tips for Planting & Growing Peas
- They are cool weather loving plants so they need to be planted in the spring to avoid the heat of the summer. They don’t produce in heat
- They love water
- They are a care-free crop
- They love to climb so give them something to grow up
Around the Garden: May 5th EcoHouse Community Garden Opening
At this time we welcomed our community to visit the community garden to increase their knowledge about growing vegetables organically and to hopefully ignite a spark of interest in joining or starting a garden in their backyard.
Thank you to all volunteers who participated on this day, by starting the preparation phase of gardening by weeding, preparing the soil, outlining beds and numbering them.