Saturday, June 1, 2013

Another outstanding volunteer day

Today we had a bunch of volunteers from The Presidio Group who, as it turns out, are a hard working bunch! With their help, and that of several other marvelous volunteers, we completed a number of tasks - some that have been lingering for way, way too long.

First we got not one but two compost heaps turned over by a pair of enthusiastic volunteers.

Next a whole gang went up to the dog area with Emily and weeded it clean, then buried a long section of carpet under the wood chips as weed suppressant. They also sorted through a pile of twigs to prepare for twig border manufacture at some later date.

Matt led a group down at the arch. He removed an area of bricks that were being pushed up by a root, and had created a tripping hazard. He flattened it and redid the brickwork, while his team pruned back the Dipogon lignosus (Cape Sweet Pea) on the arch, prevented it spreading into nearby beds, and cut back the Salvia leucantha there too.

After that was done he took his team into the storm drain area - a land populated with dangerous things (cacti) that have been left in post there for Much Too Long. They removed all the cacti - risking life and limb I might add - and sorted them into three groups: Store in the dog area for later, throw on the compost pile and plant now.

In the meantime, I took a team to the bottom of the steps and we eradicated all the ivy (evil, and something we've battled in the spot since May 2009) and Aptenia cordifolia (useful groundcover planted in January 2011 and since then gone berserk) from a good-sized area, and cut back all the Chasmanthe that are done flowering. When the area was cleared, we were ready to plant some new stuff - always fun.

We moved an Agave americana and some Aloe nobilis to better sites, and added an Aloe cameronii (Red Aloe), an Echinopsis pachanoi (San Pedro Cactus) from the storm drain and a gorgeous Agave salmiana "Butterfingers" bought for PG recently. Huge improvement!

Patrick weeded and swept the entrances and Keyvan weeded the pathways very carefully, Anna separated out a huge clump of the bromeliad Fascicularia pitcairnifolia recently donated by Josh into separate plants ready for planting, and at the end of the volunteer day the whole garden was looking really great. Go check it out!

Who did all this work? Nate, Patrick, Anna, Vitalia, Tom, Tony, Lilly, Nora, Julianna, Keyvan, Annie B., Victor, Susie, Carrie, Susan B., William, Susan S., and Anthony. Please take a bow!

Thanks to all the volunteers and to The Presidio Group for encouraging volunteer activities among their staff: what a productive, sunny day it was :)


  1. Thanks for having me at the Garden. It was fun, educational and a great workout session under a beautiful weather with awesome folks! Keep up a great work!!! -Tony

  2. Thanks for having me at the Garden today. It was fun, educational and a great workout session under a beautiful weather with an awesome folks. Keep up a great work!!! Cheers, Tony

  3. Sorry I couldn't make it to the volunteer morning. I managed to stop by the garden very late in the day, and it looks great! So happy that my ancient bromeliad is getting divided up and starting a new life in the garden!

  4. Thanks for the opportunity to help out and for a fun, relaxing, and educational morning! Your garden is lovely!

  5. Thanks guys! So great having you there to help :) And Josh we are happy to have a new species in the garden - I have a few spots it should do well in :)

  6. I was sorry to have to miss yesterday but it seems you did amazingly well. I am especially impressed by those who braved the dangerous drainage ditch of spikes and spines to create order to that area. Kudos! I definitely will stop in to admire all the new loveliness. :)


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