Potluck 08/05/12 + Newsletter (Important)

Hello Gardeners! (included are those on the waitlist, if you should like to come to the potluck)

I hope you all have been reaping the benefits of this luscious summer we’ve been having!
The main point of this email is to remind you that we have a potluck scheduled for tomorrow evening (Sunday, Aug 5) for 6pm.

Potluck Guidelines:

  • Bring enough to feed at least 10 people.
  • Consider bringing cold drinks like herb tea.
  • Bring your own dishes & flatware.
  • The garden has some re-usable dishes & flatware, but we can all agree that it is more sanitary for you to bring your own and take it home.
  • Note ingredients of your dish.
  • Bring a blanket or a garden chair.
  • The garden has a few chairs available, but if you can bring your own, it’s a good idea!
  • Invite your friends and neighbors!
The next potluck is scheduled for Friday, August 31st.

(the rest of this is rather long, but quite important information, so I hope you take the time to read it.)

General Newsletter:

We’ve been having a number of complaints from gardeners finding the gates open and/or unlocked. I’d like to remind you that when you leave, be sure to check all gates if you are the last one there. If you are not the last one there, mention to someone that you are leaving and ask them if you can close a gate for them.  Please remember to check the shed, too.

A quick note about the locks:

  • When you lock up, be sure to push up on the lock AND move the number dials to set it to lock.

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As August is the month where the garden turns from small, charming and controlled to a web of branches, vines & fruit it is important to remember to keep the paths clear. We have gardeners of all ages and physical ability at the garden and it’s really important that they can get from watering stations to plots without being attacked by foliage and fruit. Also, make sure you don’t leave any tools or cages or structures of any sort in the pathway. They actually belong in the shed, but if you keep something of your own in your plot, just keep it IN your plot.

I like to think of myself as rather agile, and even I have ripped clothing from pokey wires with little hook things meant for trellising, but only caught fabric. So the point is: keep it in the family, where the family is your plot.

Equally, it is important that all of us practice patience. If you’re having trouble getting through a pathway, kindly leave the plot owner a note and help them be aware.  Vines and many plants can grow faster than a person might realize, so it’s very important we all communicate with this understanding.

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I have asked the city several times for wood chips, and since they have not delivered I can only assume they are extremely backed up. They have always given us chips whenever we have asked for them, so I have a feeling budget cuts have placed a heavy load on our city workers. Eventually, they will come, and when they do, I hope we can get them spread quickly, especially around the spigots. Until then, please do your best to keep the areas around the spigots as dry as possible. When it does rain, those are the places that get soggiest first.  So I thank you for your cooperation and patience on this matter and hope that we can continue our efforts of kindliness.

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The public, pets & the garden

We are working on some signage to help educate the public about what we do at the garden and who is allowed to do it. We are hoping to get these up within a week or two, but until then I want to make it really clear the general policy for children at the garden.

The public is always allowed in the garden while members are there. Children of the public or of the gardeners are always welcomed but only with a guardian. As a member of the garden, it is your responsibility to explain that they are welcome to come in and look, but they must not touch anything inside the plots. You may also put them to work, if they like (mostly the children love to water things, so I will often hand them some watering cans and tell them where to pour it).

Under no circumstances may any person, child or not, run in the garden. Because the paths aren’t always clear and because there are pokey things, if someone trips, falls and lands on something that injures them, not only would we feel terrible, we could lose the opportunity to have the garden.

Pets are not officially allowed in the garden; however, if your pet is well-behaved I trust you to be responsible for your pet. All people should be aware that even though we are strictly organic at the garden, organic does include cocoa hulls, which can be poisonous to dogs. Other things, too, I am sure. So be aware and be warned. It’s the same for children, really.

Often times when gardeners have excess, they put it on the red table. The public should not feel obliged to take things off the table on their own, but gardeners may give things to them. It is an important distinction because things left on the table are meant for other gardeners and/or Camp Street Ministries. We are considering putting a basket on the outside of the fence for the public to take from.

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Cures & Prevention

Bonnie had a little natural leaf mold on some of her squash plants. A friend of hers gave her a recipe for “some” baking soda & “more” seltzer water as a tonic to get rid of the mold. I wouldn’t have believed it if I hadn’t seen how lush and green her plants are again. So If you see Bonnie hanging around (her plot is near the picnic table) ask her about it!

Also many pests don’t like strong odors, so if you’re having some pest issues, try boiling up some garlic & hot peppers, let cool, strain & spray on plants. Pests also don’t care for the fish emulsion, so when you spray it on the plants, the pests are deterred AND you are fertilizing.

When the bees are extremely active, I put some mint & basil in my hair. The bees are attracted to my stinky body and this other stink of basil & mint keeps them away from me. I also crush and rub the herbs all over my face and shoulders. So far, it has worked for me.

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… And speaking of Bees…

There has been a lot of work done on the beehives this year. We’ve had an outside volunteer named Lisa who has been working closely with Angel & Kimbly, and it all seems to be going really well. Of course, if there is anyone interested in working on the beehive as a shadow for now, please let Angel, Kimbly or me know.

I am pretty sure we will have some honey at the Harvest Party this year, yaya!  More info on that as it comes available.

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Also, the stepping stone-making practice party was major F-U-N. I’ll find out from Marcia when we want to do it again, but I hope you’ll consider coming and making a couple stones.

Okay, thanks for all of your time in reading this and I hope we can all see each other soon. Remember, I am at the garden every Thursday evening from about 6 to 7:30. Come see me!

-k

(Keri Marion)

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