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Friday, April 8, 2011

Spring Mix

I participated in a third spring event, the GreenThumb GrowTogether which took place on Saturday April 2nd. Attended by 1200 people with 55 workshops (2 I led), this was a great event that continues to be 'the official first day of spring' for New York City community gardeners, according to Parks Commissioner Adrian Benepe. This year's keynote speaker, Joan Dye Gussow, following up on the soil thread of my recent posts, spoke about how just a pinch of soil has more than a billion organisms, some that have yet to be identified.

The two workshops I led were Rainwater Harvesting presented along with my co-worker Lars Chellberg attended by 30 people interested in installing rainwater systems in their gardens. And a workshop on making what I call Grow Sacs. These are polyester bags which are upcycled into planters which can be hung on fences or walls. Simple directions here: Both workshops were videotaped. When time permits I will edit them to share.

See previous posts about vertical gardening:
Vertical Gardening
Vertical Gardening Update
Vertical Gardening Update II

It wouldn't be Spring without some threat to community gardening in NYC. This year it is the wrangling in Washington over the federal budget. One of the items on the chopping block by the Republican Tea Party is the Community Development Block Grants (CDBG) which is a way that the Feds provide money to cities and states for many social services and development programs and projects. New York City's GreenThumb Program receives 100% of it's funds through CDBG. The verdict isn't in yet but it would be a crime if the Republicans prevail and GreenThumb and other worthy programs lose their funding. If NYC politicians allow GreenThumb to lose it's funding it would be even a bigger crime.

A Couple of Spring Garden Scenes

The Perennial Veggies and Herbs in My Garden
Left to Right Front: Rhubarb, Chard,
Middle: Horseradish, Sorrel
Rear: Comfrey, Parsley (a biennial)

Great to see the greens coming up in the otherwise bare garden

Bloodroot - a wonderful spring ephemeral!