Many thanks to everyone who came out on this VERY hot day to help clean up the garden. Weeds, weeds, weeds! No one’s favorite chore, but all that weeding made a big difference in how the garden looks.
Sarah W. bushwhacking the grass:
Adam, Sidney, and Ana weeding the meeting area. Ugh! What a chore!
Sissy, Helen, Paula, and Paul harvesting garlic scapes and attacking the weeds. Double Ugh! But on the plus side, scapes. Yum!
Charlie R. and Kris battling the weeds on the north pathway. Triple Ugh!
Thanks to everyone!!
Bokashi in process is in the blue barrel(Do Not Open). Bokashi tea is in the green barrel. Use the tea as often as you like.
IMPORTANT BOKASHI NOTES
The bokashi barrel(s) is/are filled on a weekly basis with the weeds and plant material that have been placed in the pile in the back of the garden. The barrel(s) is/are emptied each week, the rain barrel is filled with the tea, and the solids are placed in the wooden compost bins.
The bokashi process takes 7 to 10 days to complete. We are currently operating on a weekly schedule, Saturday to Saturday.
- Please, under NO circumstances should the barrel be opened at any time other than during the Saturday bokashi session. Opening the barrel interrupts the bokashi fermentation process.
- Please, DO NOT attempt to tip the barrel at any time other than during the Saturday bokashi session. The filled barrel weighs over 300 pounds and could be dangerous if not handled properly.
If you have any questions, please contact Priscilla at firstname.lastname@example.org.
What are they?
These are Harlequin Bugs. They are not beetles actually, they are stinkbugs. Hence the smell. Its very important we get rid of these, they are relatively non-toxic, but many birds find them disgusting.
Which are their favorite plants?
Gardens with mustards, cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, horseradish, turnips, or arugula will likely be affected.
How do we get rid of them?
If you see them, hand pick them and throw them into a bucket of soapy water, just like with Japanese Beetles. Alternately you can just tap the leaf to get them to fall into the water, they are not beetles and cannot fly!
If you find several bugs on one plant, spray the affected plant with a 1% insecticidal soap solution with some neem or pyrethrin. This will kill the ones left on the plant. Kaolin clay solutions/dusting will have similar results.
To make your own insecticidal soap solution, see these instructions.
The nymphs (below) have a striped pattern. Treat them the same way you do adults.
The most important thing however is the eggs (above). Very distinctive white barrel with black stripes. Check the bottoms of your leaves for these. Remove them, squash them, and spray the effected plant with the soap solution.
Chrysanthemum produces pyrethin and repels them. Chamomile, celery, basil, garlic, mint, rosemary, and sage also may help deter them from your cabbages.
They have several insect predators including the wheel bug, the sand wasp, and some parasitic wasps. Yarrow, caraway, and fennel can encourage the parasitic wasps.
If you have pet turtles, chickens, or guinea fowl, they are known to eat these up. If everyone agrees to it (chickens can scratch up some plants, guinea fowl are better) we can set up a day for them to free roam and pick out a bunch of bugs. Contact email@example.com to schedule a free-roam day.
At any rate, keep an eye out for the eggs!
Thanks to everyone who helped install the green fence barrier on the north fence line. It goes a long way toward hiding all of the miscellaneous junk that Parks & Rec has hidden behind their shed.
Stuff like this…..
Ready for bees…
New gardener, Alex, jumped right in to helping the bee team set the hives up for this season. The bees have been moved to the orchard area where they can work their magic pollinating the fruit trees.
Horseradish is one of those garden delights that comes back fresh and bright every season. Whether you want it to or not. If you have an abundance in your garden, or have been gifted some by your garden neighbor, why not make your own Prepared Horseradish to keep on hand.
It was a cool and damp start to the day, but when the Best.Workday.Team.Ever. started arriving, we knew it would be a good day.
First project of the day was clearing an abandoned plot from last season to give its new gardeners a jumpstart. Thanks to Joe G., Andre, Jen P. (and son), and Mark D. for clearing, cleaning, and hauling, and to Ludi for rototilling on Sunday. The plot is now ready for new gardeners, Rachel(north half) and Cara(south half), to start planting.
Next, was weeding the garden’s garlic beds(again!). The straw bales we used for mulch last fall weren’t as seed/weed free as promised. You can’t tell the garlic from all the straw that sprouted around it.
But after the Best.Workday.Team.Ever. had finished, there was nothin’ but garlic…
Many thanks to the whole garlic weeding team: Paula, Bruce, Hannah, Mark, Nancy, and Nate.
P.S. Don’t forget to record your hours. 🙂
by Millicent Tallard
This year we had advice from a number of Hopi farmers. Taking their advice, along with favorable weather and excellent soil preparation, gave us an exceptional crop. On June 1st we planted 8 hills in 2 rows with seeds from Janice Day of Hopi. Marvin L., a member of the Native American Advisory group of Crow Canyon Archaeological Center, advised us that all hills must be planted with the same seed or the ears won’t color properly.
With good weather the sprouts appeared in 9 days…
…and by 4th of July the plants were “knee high”.
While admiring them, we began to worry about the critters that destroyed our harvest last year. I ordered two owls, one that reflected the sun and blew in the wind and one that looked like a small owl. The idea was to do anything, within reason, to protect the crop.
In mid July Jackie and I were at the Heard Museum in Phoenix. In their bookstore we met Lance P., a Hopi farmer, who told us how to keep critters away. He gave us two options, one more disgusting than the other. Of course, we chose the least obnoxious which is to sprinkle cat poo around the plants. Fortunately, Theresa, my garden partner, has a cat and kept us supplied. Jackie and Bob put up a fence with a gate to keep the critters out but to allow us in. We didn’t see any damage from mice, squirrels or raccoons as the season went on.
After a wet early spring the weather turned hot and dry. We were warned by Donald D., from the Hopi Cultural Preservation Office, to not water, no matter how dry the plants looked. So we didn’t water. Donald was our original mentor and sent blessings for our project. He also told us that the corn must be sung to and appreciates dancing in the patch. That never happened this year, so we may need volunteers to sing and dance next year.
As August wore on, we watched the ears appear and grow. We could hardly wait to see if the blue color had developed in the kernels. We began picking mid September and before the first frost had all of the blue beauties picked and photographed. They’re perfect!We mailed an ear to each Hopi farmer and to our friend in Gallup to display with a turquoise bracelet that looks like a curved ear of blue corn. Some will go to our friend Tessie at Santa Clara Pueblo where she will grind it by hand to use for blessings.
There was enough left to sell at the Rosedale Harvest sale and to give to friends for decorations. The Waldorf School students who garden at Rosedale learned about our project and one day left the garden holding ears of the blue corn, waving a corn stalk.