Thank you!

Happy Holidays everyone,

I hope everyone is having a wonderful celebrations with friends and family or maybe a great book to read while relaxing. We got a lot done in the last weeks of the garden work year. Many thanks to the folks from Workday and all the families and folks who braved the cold to come out and help in the garden. So glad the sun came out to join us as the workdays progressed.

We were able to harvest 40 pounds of broccoli and greens to add to our delivery of winter squash and box ripened tomatoes. With the help of many hands we were able to grow and give 23,140 pounds of fresh produce to our neighbors in need in 2019.

You all moved tons of soil to help us create another 1,146 square feet of lasagna mulched no-till beds and plant them in winter crops of 600 fava beans and oats and a large section of plow down cover crops to provide yummy food and prepare the beds for spring crops.

You also weeded 2,313 square feet of paths and beds to enable expanding our bunching onion crop and the planting of native wildflowers among the berry plants, plus transplanting 36 kohlrabi, 20 lettuce and 198 Chinese lettuce (celtuce) plants to fill in space left by the harvesting of hon tsai tai greens and between earlier plantings of shallots, Brussel sprouts and celtuce. This weeks plantings are part of our winter crop succession planting plan. The idea of interplantings is that plants with short maturation times can be planted with those with long maturation times, the lettuce and celtuce should be grown and harvested before the shallots and Brussel sprouts are ready to harvest later this spring.

The idea of succession plantings is that as we harvest one crop we replace it with another. The kohlrabi replaced the hon tsai tai and 2,448 seeds you started last week will provide for the second succession planting of winter crops. The root crop seeds (beets, turnips, parsnips, and rutabagas) will be planted where greens are currently planted. The green crop seeds (lettuce, radicchio, and spinach) will replace current root crops and fill in between the allium (onion, shallot and garlic) crops that won’t be ready to harvest until late spring/early summer. Many of the current crops were directly sown into the beds in the warm soil of the summer/fall season. With the chill of winter upon us we need to help the seeds germinate by starting them in the greenhouse, season extension as it is otherwise known. Thank you for devoting the patient attention needed to start all those seeds!

We also got about 8 cubic yards (about 8,000 pounds if your counting!) of compost sifted and moved out to the compost stockpile for use next spring and to make room for MORE compost making. Many thanks to the compost team members!

DB also finished pruning the last of the southern fruit trees, thanks Dean!

As always, I am indebted to all of you and send you all my sincere gratitude. Fertile GroundWorks could not do all we do without wonderful volunteers like you. You are all truly amazing human beings. THANK YOU!!! for enabling us to TEACH, GROW, and GIVE.

I do hope that you all will be able to come back and see how your efforts helped the garden to grow and change with the seasons.

May all your new years be full of joy and kindness.

Happy gardening everyone.

With sincere gratitude and hugs