Wednesday, June 5, 2019

Golden Gate Park turns 150 next year

Well, our gardens have been around a bit over 10 years but glorious Golden Gate Park blows that out of the water: in April 2020 they're celebrating 150 years.

Matt and I went to their 150th birthday planning meeting at the Koret Auditorium at SF Public Library last week, and they're looking for groups to put on events from April onward next year, in the park, to celebrate the event.

If YOUR organizations puts on events there, or is thinking about it, make them extra festive and add the GGP150 logo and so on. Visit the website for the event, which just launched and is basic for now, to find out more.

http://goldengatepark150.com/




Saturday, June 1, 2019

All Hail the Renovated Composter!

Leslie: no friend of weeds!
My word, today was a blast. I sent out an email to our mailing list that I'd be giving a demo on succulent cultivation and a free succulent to folks who came down, and we had 14 volunteers! Bribery is a thing!

By NO means do I imply these volunteers weren't ready to work for their little succulent though - and wow, did they ever work.

Chris, John, Josh: pre-sweat
First order of business was finishing up the composter. I had sent out a pleading email to the core volunteer group asking them to help Matt and I literally push rocks up hill. Yep, I had done the calculations, and figured we needed a bit less than 2.5 yards of gravel to fill the composter steps that Matt and I built last week. The gravel was delivered at 9.30am to the Pennsylvania Ave side, and we needed to wheelbarrow it all up the hill.

Sarah: weeding machine!
Last time we did that was burned on my memory, and I recalled the exhaustion as fresh as if it was last week...

Happy day: Chris, John, Josh and Matt are strong lads and like a challenge. They were soon joined by Aditi's Dad and the next two hours were spent stapling hardware cloth to the bottoms of the steps, pounding rebar into the little retaining wall, and filling up those steps with the seriously heavy gravel. Heck, they even planted a line of yuccas along the bottom edge to hold all the loose dirt in place. Mind = blown.

Laura!
While this feat was occurring, a similarly transformative feat of weeding happened elsewhere.

Leslie, Aditi, Aditi's Mum, Laura, Katsue, Dagmar, Gina and Sarah were weeding, and honestly it was not until everyone left that I realized the scope of their work.

Leslie carefully picked weeds out from the middle back bed and uncovered a lovely group of Cotyledon orbiculata var. oblonga in the diligent way only a real gardener would weed.

Katsue!
Katsue and Laura took on the steps area, and a similarly detail-oriented and careful restoration of the spot ensued.

Dagmar and Sarah went through the Aloe nobilis hedge along the cactus wall, and they also thoroughly weeded the other side of that pathway too, uncovering all the plants so they can now enjoy the sun and the emerging flowers will shine. 

Josh is not afraid of Agaves!
The whole bottom pathway looks wonderful right now, and you can even see downtown SF from there for the first time in decades as the Center Hardware and Brickley Productions buildings are gone. It's quite strange!

As you probably know, a new building full of condos will be replacing what was there, so get down and enjoy the SF skyline now, while you can.

Aditi + Mum!
Gina, Aditi and Aditi's Mum got stuck into the weeds along the sidewalk and the middle front bed. And I cut back the rambunctious cardoon and lopped back a load of Chasmanthe.

The net result of all this activity was that the collection of Recology-bound bags of weeds at the front of the garden doubled in size. 

Despite both Chris and I using the 311 app on them, they're still sitting there...

Aditi's Dad and John
A landfill trash truck stopped to pick them up but no - Chris told him to leave them: we want this stuff to be composted, since we have gone to the effort of making sure these bags are green only. 

Sorry neighbors - hopefully they're picked up soon and go on to create excellent compost to feed the vines of Napa. Can't really argue with good wine, can you?

Epic result

I did a quick demo on succulent cuttings and propagation, and folks left with new plants to enjoy. What a day!








 
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