Happy Monday

Happy Summer Solstice everyone,

I hope everyone had fun celebrating their dads and being celebrated if you are one! Well the heat has me convinced that yes the calendar is right and we have officially begun summer. Thanks to all of you for braving the heat and coming out to help. We were joined by many new faces, including folks from 24 Hour Fitness, and the families of Boys Team Charity were back in force. Everyone just rocked it out last week. We have almost all 80 beds prepped and planted, only six beds still in onions and seven prepped beds that need planting. WAHOO!!! the garden is back on schedule thanks to you all!

Last week we prepared 14 beds (aka 2,780 sq. feet if them) by gleaning them, weeding them and adding about 1,500 pounds of compost (14 cu yds) and fertilizer to them. We planted 409 seedlings, including the last five eggplants, 13 melons, 62 winter squash, 86 tomatoes, 205 peppers and 38 ground cherries. I am very excited about the ground cherries, we have never grown them before. I have never eaten them before so will be watching them closely. Potential YUM!

We also doubled the Jen’s bunching onion patch to about 120 sq ft. By first harvesting 35 pounds of them, then weeding and amending the bed, then replanting 240 of them. It is amazing that the patch started with just 15 individuals that Jen shared from her garden last June. We will share the remaining 30 pounds this week. We also direct sowed 652 beans into two beds of beans, one black eyed pea bed and one mixed variety green bean bed with nine varieties of beans.

Somewhere among all that garden work we also gleaned and harvested 788 pounds of produce to share with our neighbors. YAY!! As many of you know we don’t send out all the onions we harvest as space at our food pantry partners is limited so we store the field cured onions to deliver later. We do send them 3 boxes of stored onions/week. The guys who prepped the onions on Tuesday weighed the onions they had prepared. I was surprised to learn that the boxes averaged 47 pounds each, doing some math means that we have been sharing about 282 pounds of onions per week for the last four weeks. WOW! Also, just wanted to share that the large box of purslane that I brought over to Tri-Valley Haven’s pantry was gone before I could finish unloading the rest of our harvest. Yes, purslane is a popular veggie to those in the know.

As always, my sincere and heartfelt gratitude to all you. Thank you all for coming out to help the garden help feed our neighbors. Fertile GroundWorks couldn’t do what we do without each and every one of you. THANK YOU!
Until next we meet, do stay safe and keep loving the ones you are with.

Giant cosmic hugs

PS we found a purple Amador sweat shirt, and two water bottles (one LPGA and one with a falcon on it) out by fire pit. They are safe in the office now, awaiting your return.
PPS Want to know more about ground cherries? Here’s where we got the seeds.