Monday, February 27, 2012

Early Spring Work Party

It is hard to call this an early spring, it was more like we had no winter. I used to complain about not having summers in San Francisco but not having winters is worse, we really need the rain!

Despite the lack of rain, we had a beautiful spring day with all the fruit trees in bloom. We took advantage of the great weather to have a very needed work party at the Algarden, lots of people showed up and we had a wonderful and productive day.

My favorite garden helper Muluk came back from his Oaxaca adventure and was at the garden helping out

So good to have him back!

There were mushrooms growing everywhere, which is great as it is a sign of healthy soils.

We started by clearing out some areas that had overgrown weeds and doing sheet mulching. 

Sheet mulching consists of layering recycled card board at the bottom and then a layer of mulch on top. The card board prevents light from reaching the weeds and this kills them. The card board will eventually decompose but in the process it helps to retain moisture and it attracts lots of worms that are beneficial for the soil break down.

We added straw on top of the planted beds to help retain the moisture on the soil

Trimmed down the strawberries to get them to fucus their energy in producing fruit

We planted a new plant guild. A guild is any group of species that exploit the same resources, often in related ways. Guilds are groups of plants that work well together. Some plants may be grown for food production, some to attract beneficial insects, and others to repel harmful insects. When grouped together these plants form a guild.

In this case we planted an apricot tree at the center to help pollinate the existing apricot tree. A few pollinator attractors, the bee hive is right next to this guild so we planted budleya, borage and rosemary which the bees love, also a pineapple sage for the butterflies and hummingbirds. Some raspberries for the humanoids and a few cover crops to keep the soil moisture such as thyme (also a bee lover, bees love blues and purples)

And speaking of bees, we did loose one hive this winter but the other two are surviving and hopefully at this point this means they have made it trough the winter, now lets get ready for swarm season

Overall it was a lovely day to enjoy the garden

Thanks so much to every one who came out to join us

There were lots of winter veggies to share and people took home baggies full of greens 

Is that a dinosaur eating my dino kale forest?

oh no, just Tiago...

Who, by the way, had the most fun in the garden

Looking forward to the next work party.
Happy Spring!

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