Progress at the High School Garden!

What a difference a couple months can make! Back in April the asphalt was torn up in front of the entrance to the garden and we were just beginning to turn under the cover crops. Fast forward to June and the asphalt is gone – thanks to Moving Earth – and the rows are flourishing!

The high school food bank garden is unique in that during the school year students are able to volunteer and learn about growing their own food – and some of the produce ends up in the school cafeteria. During the summer when there are no students, all of the produce is donated to the food bank. This garden is managed by Food Bank Farm and Gardens (FBFG) President, Lys Burden, and brand new FBFG garden coordinator, Joanne Pontrello.

Before and After rowsTurning cover crop, April 2015 (L) and Peas, Broccoli, Chard and Kale growing in those same rows, June 2015 (R)

Before and After asphaltBroken asphalt, April 2015 (L) and New Garden Space with asphalt removed, June 2015 (R)

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April 2015 (Above) June 2015 (Below)

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Many thanks to all of the volunteers that have helped develop this garden! If you would like to find out more about this project or get involved, contact garden coordinators Lys – wpburden@aol.com or Joanne – pontrello@gmail.com.

PTHS Garden Party

Our first “all hands on deck” work party was an excellent day for turning cover crops and planting starts. Despite the threat of inclement weather, nine volunteers gathered to help get the Port Townsend High School Food Bank Garden ready for spring planting. Thank you to everyone that made it!

Cover crops planted in the fall are turned into the soil in order to replenish much needed soil nutrients. Soil amendments may also be added throughout the season to keep the soil quality high.

You may also notice the large amounts of broken concrete – our expansion has begun! Once the concrete has been cleared this garden will encompass almost 10,000 square feet.

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Mark your calendars for our next Garden Party Saturday, May 9th at the Quimper Grange Food Bank Garden location! Everyone is welcome even if you haven’t volunteers before. Contact ptfoodbankgarden@gmail.com for more information.

Don’t miss out!

The Food Bank Farm and Gardens leadership team are hosting a get-together at the Red Cross of Port Townsend (located in Mountain View). We will take a tour of the food bank and give a short presentation about our food bank gardening efforts!

10am – noon today.

If you don’t catch this post in time, but you’re interested in hearing about our efforts or how you can get involved – please email ptfoodbankgarden@gmail.com and say hello!

Greenhouse Raising, Chapter 1:

In the beginning, there was gravel and dirt….

Then we dug holes, poured cement, and set posts:

Meeting of the minds, coming up with the afternoon game plan:

Hoops and purlins go up!


Day 2: moving dirt, making beds, building doors.

THANK YOU THANK YOU to the very skilled and gung-ho volunteers that came out for the raising! As you can see, we’ve still gotta get the plastic up–so stay tuned, there’s more raising on the way!

first work party: before and after

Our first work party was a huge success! We moved lots of raspberries, greens, and a couple fruit trees to make way for the greenhouse, built a retaining wall, cleared out quack grass, and squared up the greenhouse footprint. Big thanks to everyone that came out to lend a hand! The next work party is slotted for THIS SATURDAY 2/18 at 9:30. We’ll be finishing the seed starting shelf and building some outside garden beds. Hope you can come!

BEFORE

DURING

AFTER

Field Trip: Whidbey Island Good Cheer Food Bank Garden

A few garden volunteers took the ferry over to Whidbey Island today to visit the Good Cheer Food Bank Garden. Cary Peterson, the garden coordinator at Good Cheer, met us there to show us the low-tech systems that she uses in the garden. She’s been fine-tuning her food bank production systems over the past four years at Good Cheer and is a wealth of knowledge, not to mention a huge inspiration!

We checked out the greenhouse design and layout…

And she shared her greenhouse crop rotation strategies…

And all of her planting and planning wisdom…

And showed us the super seed germinating shelf, which we hope to replicate in PT!

The trip was inspiring and energizing, but also reminded us that we’ve got lots of work to do before springtime!  Before we can construct the greenhouse (which will be delivered next Wednesday!), we need to level the garden space and install a short retaining wall on one side. Get your muscles warmed up–we’ll be posting dates for work parties soon!