All posts by John Danks

Garden Tour Success!

The Master Gardeners Garden Tour was a huge success. Each garden saw about 150 visitors. The comments from our guests were all very positive. We had the opportunity to explain a lot of the techniques in use and how the gardens serve as a place to educate not just the gardeners but the whole community.

Here are a few of the artichokes we harvested today at 5th St:

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Sunday work party results

5th street had an informal work party on Sunday. Steve from Lazy J delivered 7 yards of compost at 10 AM:

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Several volunteers got right to work shoveling and hauling compost to the willow tree to prepare it for planting. After several hours the bed was ready. Hank brought a few gooseberries and Airport Garden donated a dozen herb plants.

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We made a narrow path that loops back under the tree. It will get some cardboard and alder chips soon. The area along the fence needs a 2×8 sunk in the ground to keep the neighbor’s grass and weeds out. We’ll put more cardboard and alder chips afterwards to keep the weeds down.

Tomato Tips

Here are two videos with tips on staking and stringing your tomatoes for healthier plants and better yields.

This first video is from a large commercial greenhouse in Colville, Washington. Most of the techniques can be applied to smaller gardens as long as you have a structure to support the  strings.

This next video is a more practical method for staking on a small scale. One stake is used for each tomato plant. Be sure to get the stake deep enough in the ground that the wind won’t blow it over when the plant is loaded with fruit.

The Master Gardeners of Clallam County are using the plots directly North of the greenhouse/shed for an experiment in growing grafted tomatoes. One half will be grown in a tunnel to extend the season while the other half is grown in the open. It should be very interesting to see how each section does this year.

Garden Orientations

Garden Orientation on Saturday, March 24th

The Vineyard orientation starts at 10 AM, and Fifth St starts at 2 PM. Both orientations will take place in the gardens.

Orientation is required for all gardeners, new and returning, before you can start working in your plots!

We will have a box of donated seeds available, and please feel free to bring your own seeds to share and exchange!

5th Street Garden Update

Hank and I finished marking the edges of the garden plots at the Fifth Street Community Garden. You’ll notice rebar pounded into the ground and marked with yellow tape. The top of each piece of rebar is the height of the grade we want, so there will be more work to raise the levels in some areas and lower them in others.

These corner markings will also be used to frame the beds later this year, but for now you can use them to find the edges of the beds and trim the grass back to the pathways.

2012 Applications are Ready!

Here are the applications for 2012. Please remember you need to complete and send in both the application and the hold harmless agreement¬†for the garden you’ll be at. Don’t forget to include the check!

We have some great educational opportunities scheduled this year, including:

  • Improving your garden soil
  • Seed starting
  • Growing tomatoes
  • Crop rotation
  • Small space, high yield gardens
  • Plant metabolites

The COGS community garden in Sequim has also invited us to come along on their garden tours, and a talk by Linda Gilkeson on winter gardening.

First Step will also be hosting a few free cooking and preservation demonstrations.

We’ll be sure to announce dates and times for all of these and more throughout the year.