Summer Is Here!

Our wonderful new addition to the garden

I was at my plot nice and early before the heat of the day kicked in. The humidity was still high but still the temp was cool enough to get some serious work accomplished.

I was met at the gardens, by Val Smith, who just is a wealth of knowledge about growing a successful veggie garden. She was quite impressed with everyone’s plot and had some ideas and suggestions to help us get a good crop ( I will share her tips here later). We put down unimprinted newspaper strips and then covered with straw. I am excited to see my beans and peas coming along nicely. Plants are nice to buy but to me the excitement and wonderment comes from planting simple seeds in the ground. Wow, when they first poke up out of the ground it is a thrill. When they get bigger you almost burst with pride and THEN when you can harvest, you are in awe….

Here are some tips from Val: you can start planting more in your space (if you have space!) We have some unused plots and we will find out which are empty and maybe we can grow more! Veggies to plant now are beans, squash, peas and kale. Lettuce and spinach you can plant later for a fall crop. Also Val recommended putting down newspaper and straw or when Al mows again that would make a great covering over the paper. This will keep weeds to a minimum. As some weeds do poke thru, you can just pull them and add them on top of the straw. It helps keep your plants from drying out and also keeps down the splashing of dirt on your vegetables when it rains.

Now is the time to check for bugs. One plots’ squash had beetles in the blooms which Val said can be hand picked or chemicals used. Keeping out the bugs will help have a better crop when it comes time to harvest. Putting marigolds around the perimeter of your garden helps with some pests and I saw some had mothballs scattered thru their plots. I plan on making a trip to Green Valley Growers this week when their flowers are marked down to 50% off and seeing if I can’t score enough to put around my area (will look pretty too!)    

Last but not least: thanks to all involved thru Mapleton High School for the wonderful and pretty fence and arbor at the foot of our land. I can’t wait to see it all painted!!  Our community garden has come a long way since this early spring and I want to thank everyone involved who has made this a reality.  This is a wonderful thing for our community.

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