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Summer Plans & Projects

School gardens are never far from my thoughts, even amidst summer lake and sea swimming, yard games, bbq's and growing our own family veggies. So! Here are a few things that have been bubbling away in the community planning cauldron:

1) We've learned that summer volunteer work-parties need to be in the mornings, when it's still cool. Also, it's most fun if we bring coffee and cocoa and don't expect to get much done -- just see what people are drawn to, in addition to giving the beds a deep watering. At our three summer events so far, folks have turned and distributed compost, weeded a ton of blackberries and gorse, painted signs, hung a giant shade sail, planted seeds for autumn, harvested and cooked potatoes, broad-beans, and more to share with the group (it's very handy to have a butane stove and pans, oil, and salt along), and more.

2) The Greenhouse for SSE is coming! It's been quite a back-and-forth as to whether we pursue a CRD building permit for a larger structure or simply go with an 8x12 greenhouse for now. People have weighed in on both sides, but nobody seems to have the extra time right now to pursue the bigger option, so we'll make do with an 8x12 with an adjoined shelter and work-tables to extend the covered workspace. This also gives us an opportunity to collect rainwater in the garden and focus on a toolshed and more this coming year.

3) Living Soil is the foundation of the garden. Somehow, this is just dawning on me, and I've been enjoying reading curricula for school gardens based around ecological metaphors of the living soil community. This coming year may be the year of good dirt - at least it's become one of the pillars in the Gulf Islands Garden Guide that is underway.

4) Growing Community Connections. This part is as important to me as growing the garden and getting stuff built. It's been fun reaching out to those around the islands and beyond, and I look forward to many more school garden connections in this coming year.

These and other kids harvested these new potatoes and sauteed them with dill from the garden!

Theo and Isabel dine on the Broad Beans that they and others harvested in the garden.


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