the local Garden’s for Humanity organization is putting on their annual spring planting event. Didn’t go last year, but did the year before. That time it was a single day, with a couple of lectures and then we broke off into workshops. it was relatively well attended and interesting.
This year it is a bit more ambitious, running over 10 days, starting today with a few lectures and then breaking out into workshops at various places in the area. There will be container gardening, slow water demonstrations, a couple of different ones about local/wild/native foods, food preservation, etc.
Today’s lectures were Slow Water and year round greenhouse growing, and one about Soil Therapy Restoration. Since the latter was EXTRA over the cost of the day, and ran late, opted out of that one (besides I’ve already had the small scale story and product – see http://www.soilsecrets.com).
Slow water was interesting. A lot of ideas of how to improve the soil and water flow on one’s land to keep as much of it as possible. Not all about storage tanks, water butts, and ponds. a lot about high quality soil – living, friable dirt – that will absorb the water, allow it to percolate deep for plants to draw on, rather than staying on the surface of the ground and just evaporating again. Especially important here in the desert. It seems, along the same lines, that we (as a city) are being charged with reducing the pollution of the run off water from the city to the year round creek that flows through town. So keeping our water from just running off will become even more important.
The greenhouse one wasn’t quite what I expected, with 2/3’rds of it b eing how to build the greenhouse to include heat storage to keep the temperatures moderated even in the depths of mountain winters. Since I already have a free standing greenhouse, it would require some uglification to insulate the north wall of that building. But, it did give me some ideas of what I can do in the future. For summer use, have already purchased a new shade cloth for that space. its a 50% dark green rather than the lighter colored 35% cloth I’ve been using. The dark color casts more of a shadow which helps keep the space (and the area between the greenhouse and the house) cooler. Used a dark green 50% last year over my container grow area last year and it was awesome!
Now, have to also deal with the water. there is no doubt that the plants are responding much better to the water that has been able to stand and aerate and lose a lot of its chlorine before being used on the plants, compared to just out of the hose.