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Old 15-03-2009, 04:26 AM posted to rec.food.cooking
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The community garden plugs along. We'll plant this spring or I'll die
trying.

Yesterday Bobby from the local hardware and feed store delivered
enough 12-foot 2 x 12's to make 35 12 x 4-foot raised beds. (We
already had one made as a test of the design) It was cold and raining
like a sumbitch, but a friend and Bobby and I unloaded his trailer. A
12-foot 2 x 12 is a hefty hunk o' wood. Bobby bore up alright, but
the other two of us just about proved our mortality. For the record,
that totaled 83 boards plus a few 2 x 4's for corner braces. Did I
mention it was raining? And cold?

This afternoon three of us commenced sawing and screwing the boards
together. We got all the lumber cut to size and screwed the 2 x 4
braces into the 4-foot sections. A couple other volunteers arrived
just in time to help assemble the boxes. I'd wanted to get all 35 of
them done today, but we flagged after a dozen. It takes four people
to carry one.

Many parts of my aging body ache tonight.

Once the boxes are all assembled, we're in business. Local government
folks hauled three dump truck loads of salvaged potting soil and two
cubic yards of composted manure to the garden and tilled it in. We
even had a county commissioner driving a tractor with a specially
modified box blade on back to pile up the amended soil into wide rows
suitable for the dimensions of the raised beds.

Cow Hill is still under a county-wide burn ban because of the
persistent drought. We got about 5 inches of rain this week, but the
ban is still in effect. We're meeting with the city water guys next
week to install a meter and a line for irrigation purposes. I've got
a bunch of literature on drip irrigation an ag science professor
handed to me last week. Probably should read it.

Some ag research guys with the county extension service (it's called
"AgriLife Extension" these days, just to make your spell check mad)
have tilled a couple of acres next to the community garden site for
larger crop production. They're going to plant sweet corn, black
eyes, edamame, and stuff which we will be able to give away for free.

Tonight one of my box-making compadres and his lady friend and I drove
over to Big Smith's Barbecue just south of Sulphur Springs for dinner.
The place is important, one of the best in Texas. They had ribs. I
had sliced brisket and hot sausage. We all had onion rings.

In other news, D is out of town. She had a conference in San
Francisco this week and will spend a few days with a dear friend up in
Sonoma County before returning to my loving arms. She called this
morning to tell me a little about her stay, including her $100 meal at
a hoity toity restaurant the other night and the oranges on the orange
tree in he friend's yard.

Did I mention it's cold and wet here? Did I mention that major
portions of my body hurt?

And finally, sad news: Matt Martinez, Jr. died yesterday. He was a
major presence in the Texas restaurant scene. His place in Dallas,
Matt's Rancho Martinez, is pretty much ground zero round these parts
when it comes to quality Tex-Mex food. His roasted jalapeno
vinaigrette, for example, is mysteriously delicious.

Over the years he published several funny and informative cookbooks,
cooked along side notables like Julia Child, and pretty much answered
the question of whether there was really good Tex-Mex cooking. A lot
of heavy, fatty, salty junk is offered at a lot of places under the
name of Tex-Mex. Matt Martinez's food is good.

He was 64. The cause of death was brain cancer.
--

modom

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Old 15-03-2009, 12:53 PM posted to rec.food.cooking
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"modom (palindrome guy)" wrote in message
...
The community garden plugs along. We'll plant this spring or I'll die
trying.

snip trials and tribs. of gardeners
modom


I'm envious. You have the chance to do things right and 'from the ground
up,' so to speak. I had something weird happen with my soaker irrigation
last year -- never happened before. The above-ground rooting for the sweet
corn nailed the soaker hose to the ground and grew right through the hose in
about a dozen places. I had to cut the roots with pruning shears because
they were about 1/8 inch thick and went deep into the ground. I was using
the recycled rubber soaker hoses. Tell me more about the drip irrigation
you are putting in.
Janet


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Old 15-03-2009, 01:59 PM posted to rec.food.cooking
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"modom (palindrome guy)" wrote:

The community garden plugs along. We'll plant this spring or I'll die
trying.

Yesterday Bobby from the local hardware and feed store delivered
enough 12-foot 2 x 12's to make 35 12 x 4-foot raised beds.



I hope all that lumber is pressure treated, and the newer safer treated
lumber will begin to rot in like ten years, sooner if your area is generally
wet. I think for a community garden a much better system would be to have
like 10' X 10' plots staked out directly on the ground... in so many ways it
will be infinitely simpler to maintain. For the cost of all that lumber a
tremendous quantity of topsoil could have been hauled in, and each fall and
spring so much easier to amend and till.

So what is the purpose of this venture, what crops are planned?



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Old 15-03-2009, 04:10 PM posted to rec.food.cooking
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On Sun, 15 Mar 2009 08:13:32 -0600, Christine Dabney
wrote:

On Sat, 14 Mar 2009 23:26:40 -0500, "modom (palindrome guy)"
wrote:

In other news, D is out of town. She had a conference in San
Francisco this week and will spend a few days with a dear friend up in
Sonoma County before returning to my loving arms. She called this
morning to tell me a little about her stay, including her $100 meal at
a hoity toity restaurant the other night and the oranges on the orange
tree in he friend's yard.


What restaurant, do you know?

Christine


She told me, but I don't remember. I'll let you know later.
--

modom
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Old 15-03-2009, 04:29 PM posted to rec.food.cooking
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On Sun, 15 Mar 2009 06:53:10 -0600, "Janet Bostwick"
wrote:


"modom (palindrome guy)" wrote in message
.. .
The community garden plugs along. We'll plant this spring or I'll die
trying.

snip trials and tribs. of gardeners


I'm envious. You have the chance to do things right and 'from the ground
up,' so to speak. I had something weird happen with my soaker irrigation
last year -- never happened before. The above-ground rooting for the sweet
corn nailed the soaker hose to the ground and grew right through the hose in
about a dozen places. I had to cut the roots with pruning shears because
they were about 1/8 inch thick and went deep into the ground. I was using
the recycled rubber soaker hoses. Tell me more about the drip irrigation
you are putting in.
Janet

I'm not the one who's expert in this stuff, but what the Ag Science
professor gave me came from these two sites:

http://www.irrigationdirect.com/
http://www.dripdepot.com/

What he pointed me to was this:
http://www.dripdepot.com/drip-irrigation-tubing.html

And this:
http://www.irrigationdirect.com/prod...D-DET250-6-100

One of the people working on this project installed a drip irrigation
system at a public garden in a nearby town, and we have a certified
master gardener on board. Their expertise is miles beyond mine in
these matters, so I plan to follow their instructions.
--

modom


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Old 15-03-2009, 04:54 PM posted to rec.food.cooking
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Default Report from this part of Texas

On Sun, 15 Mar 2009 13:59:28 GMT, "brooklyn1"
wrote:

"modom (palindrome guy)" wrote:

The community garden plugs along. We'll plant this spring or I'll die
trying.

Yesterday Bobby from the local hardware and feed store delivered
enough 12-foot 2 x 12's to make 35 12 x 4-foot raised beds.



I hope all that lumber is pressure treated, and the newer safer treated
lumber will begin to rot in like ten years, sooner if your area is generally
wet. I think for a community garden a much better system would be to have
like 10' X 10' plots staked out directly on the ground... in so many ways it
will be infinitely simpler to maintain. For the cost of all that lumber a
tremendous quantity of topsoil could have been hauled in, and each fall and
spring so much easier to amend and till.

We know what we're doing. Besides a professor of ag science and the
director of the county extension service, members of our group include
retired farmers, a certified master gardener, and an expert in drip
irrigation systems.

So what is the purpose of this venture, what crops are planned?

Mission: Our mission is to support community gardening by building
community participation, civic pride, and awareness of benefits to the
environment and individual health. We will provide opportunities to
learn about food production, generate produce for individual
participants and the impoverished, and demonstrate sustainable land
stewardship.

Individual members of the community will lease plots and grow what
they want in them with the advice of the master gardener and the
county extension service.

An established local group called Cereal Crops Research, Inc. will
plant and maintain larger plots of corn, beans, peas, edamame, etc.

A workshop on composting and selecting tomato varieties appropriate to
our soil and climate is scheduled in the coming weeks. Discussion is
underway regarding cooking and preserving classes in the large kitchen
of a nearby church. Other events may happen as the project develops.
--

modom
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Old 15-03-2009, 05:47 PM posted to rec.food.cooking
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Posts: 1,061
Default Report from this part of Texas


"modom (palindrome guy)" wrote in message
...
On Sun, 15 Mar 2009 06:53:10 -0600, "Janet Bostwick"
wrote:


"modom (palindrome guy)" wrote in message
. ..
The community garden plugs along. We'll plant this spring or I'll die
trying.

snip trials and tribs. of gardeners


I'm envious. You have the chance to do things right and 'from the ground
up,' so to speak. I had something weird happen with my soaker irrigation
last year -- never happened before. The above-ground rooting for the
sweet
corn nailed the soaker hose to the ground and grew right through the hose
in
about a dozen places. I had to cut the roots with pruning shears because
they were about 1/8 inch thick and went deep into the ground. I was using
the recycled rubber soaker hoses. Tell me more about the drip irrigation
you are putting in.
Janet

I'm not the one who's expert in this stuff, but what the Ag Science
professor gave me came from these two sites:

http://www.irrigationdirect.com/
http://www.dripdepot.com/

What he pointed me to was this:
http://www.dripdepot.com/drip-irrigation-tubing.html

And this:
http://www.irrigationdirect.com/prod...D-DET250-6-100

One of the people working on this project installed a drip irrigation
system at a public garden in a nearby town, and we have a certified
master gardener on board. Their expertise is miles beyond mine in
these matters, so I plan to follow their instructions.
--

modom

I'm familiar with the type of product. Is it going to be used as a
permanent installation or picked up every year so that you can cultivate?
Janet


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Old 15-03-2009, 05:53 PM posted to rec.food.cooking
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"modom (palindrome guy)" wrote in message
...
On Sun, 15 Mar 2009 13:59:28 GMT, "brooklyn1"
wrote:

"modom (palindrome guy)" wrote:

The community garden plugs along. We'll plant this spring or I'll die
trying.

Yesterday Bobby from the local hardware and feed store delivered
enough 12-foot 2 x 12's to make 35 12 x 4-foot raised beds.



I hope all that lumber is pressure treated, and the newer safer treated
lumber will begin to rot in like ten years, sooner if your area is
generally
wet. I think for a community garden a much better system would be to have
like 10' X 10' plots staked out directly on the ground... in so many ways
it
will be infinitely simpler to maintain. For the cost of all that lumber a
tremendous quantity of topsoil could have been hauled in, and each fall
and
spring so much easier to amend and till.

We know what we're doing. Besides a professor of ag science and the
director of the county extension service, members of our group include
retired farmers, a certified master gardener, and an expert in drip
irrigation systems.

So what is the purpose of this venture, what crops are planned?

Mission: Our mission is to support community gardening by building
community participation, civic pride, and awareness of benefits to the
environment and individual health. We will provide opportunities to
learn about food production, generate produce for individual
participants and the impoverished, and demonstrate sustainable land
stewardship.

Individual members of the community will lease plots and grow what
they want in them with the advice of the master gardener and the
county extension service.

An established local group called Cereal Crops Research, Inc. will
plant and maintain larger plots of corn, beans, peas, edamame, etc.

A workshop on composting and selecting tomato varieties appropriate to
our soil and climate is scheduled in the coming weeks. Discussion is
underway regarding cooking and preserving classes in the large kitchen
of a nearby church. Other events may happen as the project develops.
--

modom

My daughter and her husband (both have doctorates in several tree, biology,
sustainable farming areas as well as time spent in Africa and Brazil
teaching ) are venturing into neighborhood gardening in a big way this year.
Not near as big as you, but I don't think we're talking about the same
amount of land being available. They just had 18 yards of mushroom compost
delivered. Their challenge is varmits.
Janet


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Old 15-03-2009, 06:27 PM posted to rec.food.cooking
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modom (palindrome guy) wrote:


"modom (palindrome guy)" wrote:
The community garden plugs along. We'll plant this spring or I'll die
trying.


Mission: Our mission is to support community gardening by building
community participation, civic pride, and awareness of benefits to the
environment and individual health. We will provide opportunities to
learn about food production, generate produce for individual
participants and the impoverished, and demonstrate sustainable land
stewardship.

Individual members of the community will lease plots and grow what
they want in them with the advice of the master gardener and the
county extension service.

An established local group called Cereal Crops Research, Inc. will
plant and maintain larger plots of corn, beans, peas, edamame, etc.

A workshop on composting and selecting tomato varieties appropriate to
our soil and climate is scheduled in the coming weeks. Discussion is
underway regarding cooking and preserving classes in the large kitchen
of a nearby church. Other events may happen as the project develops.
--



That sounds like a very worthwhile project. I wish you success.
One caveat: It might be worth mentioning to new gardeners that it is
not worth planting vegetables that you will not eat. (Strange things are
done in the interest of "companion planting".)

gloria p
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Old 15-03-2009, 06:38 PM posted to rec.food.cooking
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"brooklyn1" wrote

Yesterday Bobby from the local hardware and feed store delivered
enough 12-foot 2 x 12's to make 35 12 x 4-foot raised beds.


I hope all that lumber is pressure treated, and the newer safer treated
lumber will begin to rot in like ten years, sooner if your area is
generally


Nope, you want it untreated for a garden. The chemicals in even today's PT
wood are unsafe anyplace near food crops.





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Old 15-03-2009, 07:40 PM posted to rec.food.cooking
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"modom (palindrome guy)" wrote:

On Sun, 15 Mar 2009 13:59:28 GMT, "brooklyn1"
wrote:

"modom (palindrome guy)" wrote:

The community garden plugs along. We'll plant this spring or I'll die
trying.

Yesterday Bobby from the local hardware and feed store delivered
enough 12-foot 2 x 12's to make 35 12 x 4-foot raised beds.



I hope all that lumber is pressure treated, and the newer safer treated
lumber will begin to rot in like ten years, sooner if your area is generally
wet. I think for a community garden a much better system would be to have
like 10' X 10' plots staked out directly on the ground... in so many ways it
will be infinitely simpler to maintain. For the cost of all that lumber a
tremendous quantity of topsoil could have been hauled in, and each fall and
spring so much easier to amend and till.

We know what we're doing. Besides a professor of ag science and the
director of the county extension service, members of our group include
retired farmers, a certified master gardener, and an expert in drip
irrigation systems.

So what is the purpose of this venture, what crops are planned?

Mission: Our mission is to support community gardening by building
community participation, civic pride, and awareness of benefits to the
environment and individual health. We will provide opportunities to
learn about food production, generate produce for individual
participants and the impoverished, and demonstrate sustainable land
stewardship.

Individual members of the community will lease plots and grow what
they want in them with the advice of the master gardener and the
county extension service.

An established local group called Cereal Crops Research, Inc. will
plant and maintain larger plots of corn, beans, peas, edamame, etc.

A workshop on composting and selecting tomato varieties appropriate to
our soil and climate is scheduled in the coming weeks. Discussion is
underway regarding cooking and preserving classes in the large kitchen
of a nearby church. Other events may happen as the project develops.
--

modom


I did community garden stuff in a different part of the country years
ago, and I agree with the argument against raised beds. All the
community gardens I've ever been involved in were just stake and string
delineated plots with walking paths between the rows and watering
spigots every 50' or so. Raised beds may be a bit more photogenic, but
they tend to be a hassle unless they're really tiny plots. Typical plots
I've seen were 10x25, 25x25, and 50x50.
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Old 15-03-2009, 07:40 PM posted to rec.food.cooking
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"modom (palindrome guy)" wrote in message
...
On Sun, 15 Mar 2009 13:59:28 GMT, "brooklyn1"
wrote:

"modom (palindrome guy)" wrote:

The community garden plugs along. We'll plant this spring or I'll die
trying.

Yesterday Bobby from the local hardware and feed store delivered
enough 12-foot 2 x 12's to make 35 12 x 4-foot raised beds.



I hope all that lumber is pressure treated, and the newer safer treated
lumber will begin to rot in like ten years, sooner if your area is
generally
wet. I think for a community garden a much better system would be to have
like 10' X 10' plots staked out directly on the ground... in so many ways
it
will be infinitely simpler to maintain. For the cost of all that lumber a
tremendous quantity of topsoil could have been hauled in, and each fall
and
spring so much easier to amend and till.

We know what we're doing. Besides a professor of ag science and the
director of the county extension service, members of our group include
retired farmers, a certified master gardener, and an expert in drip
irrigation systems.

So what is the purpose of this venture, what crops are planned?

Mission: Our mission is to support community gardening by building
community participation, civic pride, and awareness of benefits to the
environment and individual health. We will provide opportunities to
learn about food production, generate produce for individual
participants and the impoverished, and demonstrate sustainable land
stewardship.

Individual members of the community will lease plots and grow what
they want in them with the advice of the master gardener and the
county extension service.

An established local group called Cereal Crops Research, Inc. will
plant and maintain larger plots of corn, beans, peas, edamame, etc.

A workshop on composting and selecting tomato varieties appropriate to
our soil and climate is scheduled in the coming weeks. Discussion is
underway regarding cooking and preserving classes in the large kitchen
of a nearby church. Other events may happen as the project develops.
--

modom


This sounds like a huge undertaking. What will be the rent for each of your
48 sq ft plots? How much land is involved in total, and who owns it or is
it donated? Are there plans to add more raised beds? Good luck.


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Old 15-03-2009, 08:09 PM posted to rec.food.cooking
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On Sun, 15 Mar 2009 19:40:52 GMT, "brooklyn1"
wrote:


"modom (palindrome guy)" wrote in message
.. .
On Sun, 15 Mar 2009 13:59:28 GMT, "brooklyn1"
wrote:

We know what we're doing. Besides a professor of ag science and the
director of the county extension service, members of our group include
retired farmers, a certified master gardener, and an expert in drip
irrigation systems.

So what is the purpose of this venture, what crops are planned?

Mission: Our mission is to support community gardening by building
community participation, civic pride, and awareness of benefits to the
environment and individual health. We will provide opportunities to
learn about food production, generate produce for individual
participants and the impoverished, and demonstrate sustainable land
stewardship.

Individual members of the community will lease plots and grow what
they want in them with the advice of the master gardener and the
county extension service.

An established local group called Cereal Crops Research, Inc. will
plant and maintain larger plots of corn, beans, peas, edamame, etc.

A workshop on composting and selecting tomato varieties appropriate to
our soil and climate is scheduled in the coming weeks. Discussion is
underway regarding cooking and preserving classes in the large kitchen
of a nearby church. Other events may happen as the project develops.


This sounds like a huge undertaking. What will be the rent for each of your
48 sq ft plots? How much land is involved in total, and who owns it or is
it donated? Are there plans to add more raised beds? Good luck.


We've leased the land from a church for a buck a year. Total land is
ca. 7 acres, but not all that is slated for cultivation this year. The
county commissioner involved says he wants to bulldoze a pond on part
of the lease next year so we can wean ourselves from city water for
irrigation.

Incidentally, that lease was somewhat problematic. We had to get a
local lawyer to donate some time to us to make the lease specific to
the project. We're using government equipment for some of the heavy
work and don't want any complaints about improving church property
with it. Separation of church and state, you know.

The guys who tilled the land and incorporated the soil amendments
actually prepared about 1/3 more soil than we'll need this year. (BTW,
man is that good dirt now!) So we have room to expand going forward.

Cost of a plot is $30 a year. We have a mild enough climate that you
can grow greens, lettuce, arugula, cilantro and some other herbs even
in winter so you can raise edibles most of the year.

Dallas has a very successful community garden association that has
been part of our inspiration. Here's their Web site:
http://www.gardendallas.org/
--

modom
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Old 15-03-2009, 08:14 PM posted to rec.food.cooking
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On Sun, 15 Mar 2009 08:13:32 -0600, Christine Dabney
wrote:

On Sat, 14 Mar 2009 23:26:40 -0500, "modom (palindrome guy)"
wrote:

In other news, D is out of town. She had a conference in San
Francisco this week and will spend a few days with a dear friend up in
Sonoma County before returning to my loving arms. She called this
morning to tell me a little about her stay, including her $100 meal at
a hoity toity restaurant the other night and the oranges on the orange
tree in he friend's yard.


What restaurant, do you know?

Christine


It was Gary Danko. D just emailed me the answer to your question.
Menu is he http://www.garydanko.com/flash/menu_print.html
--

modom
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Old 15-03-2009, 08:22 PM posted to rec.food.cooking
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"Pete C." wrote in message
ster.com...

"modom (palindrome guy)" wrote:

On Sun, 15 Mar 2009 13:59:28 GMT, "brooklyn1"
wrote:

"modom (palindrome guy)" wrote:

The community garden plugs along. We'll plant this spring or I'll die
trying.

Yesterday Bobby from the local hardware and feed store delivered
enough 12-foot 2 x 12's to make 35 12 x 4-foot raised beds.


I hope all that lumber is pressure treated, and the newer safer treated
lumber will begin to rot in like ten years, sooner if your area is
generally
wet. I think for a community garden a much better system would be to
have
like 10' X 10' plots staked out directly on the ground... in so many
ways it
will be infinitely simpler to maintain. For the cost of all that lumber
a
tremendous quantity of topsoil could have been hauled in, and each fall
and
spring so much easier to amend and till.

We know what we're doing. Besides a professor of ag science and the
director of the county extension service, members of our group include
retired farmers, a certified master gardener, and an expert in drip
irrigation systems.

So what is the purpose of this venture, what crops are planned?

Mission: Our mission is to support community gardening by building
community participation, civic pride, and awareness of benefits to the
environment and individual health. We will provide opportunities to
learn about food production, generate produce for individual
participants and the impoverished, and demonstrate sustainable land
stewardship.

Individual members of the community will lease plots and grow what
they want in them with the advice of the master gardener and the
county extension service.

An established local group called Cereal Crops Research, Inc. will
plant and maintain larger plots of corn, beans, peas, edamame, etc.

A workshop on composting and selecting tomato varieties appropriate to
our soil and climate is scheduled in the coming weeks. Discussion is
underway regarding cooking and preserving classes in the large kitchen
of a nearby church. Other events may happen as the project develops.
--

modom


I did community garden stuff in a different part of the country years
ago, and I agree with the argument against raised beds. All the
community gardens I've ever been involved in were just stake and string
delineated plots with walking paths between the rows and watering
spigots every 50' or so. Raised beds may be a bit more photogenic, but
they tend to be a hassle unless they're really tiny plots. Typical plots
I've seen were 10x25, 25x25, and 50x50.


I've been heavily involved in community gardening too, including several
years at Brooklyn Botanic Garden. They all stay far away from raised beds,
they're too costly to build and maintain, plus they don't produce nearly as
well as planting beds directly on the ground... the typical newbie gardeners
quickly become disenchanted even under the best of conditions, add any level
of difficulty, extra labor, and poor results and it's adios.

Unless the participants are each in their own right accomplished gardeners
those raised beds will very soon become
abandoned heaps of rot. Raised beds are far more a challenge than beds
directly on the ground.




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