Carol Haverty Leads Welcome to the Garden Classes March 13 and 20

Carol Haverty is responsible for creating both private and public gardens
CarolHavertyGarden 300x200 Carol Haverty Leads Welcome to the Garden Classes March 13 and 20

Carol Haverty is responsible for creating both private and public gardens in Ventura County

Carol Haverty will be lead another gardening class this month (March). Carol’s current series of gardening classes are being offered through the Pleasant Valley Recreation and Parks District. The classes consist of two interactive sessions meeting on two consecutive Thursday evenings.

The Upcoming Class: Nurturing Seeds

Presented Mar. 13, 20 2014 Thursdays 6:30 -8:00 p.m. this 2 meeting class will cover Starting and Nurturing Seeds:

This class with Carol will make you more confident in planting seeds. You’ll learn which are easy to start, learn the ones that are not so easy and those that are (nearly) impossible to grow.  After you take this class, you will be able to choose those that will give you the greatest success with the least amount of effort and resources.

Babies and seeds have a lot in common; they need TLC big time when they are incubating and first born. As with a child, helping it to adapt and thrive in a scary world takes some dedication and knowledge helps too.  So it is with seeds, many are care free, many are not.

The class will give you lots of tips on short cuts, tools, low cost sequencing that helps your garden babies adapt to being adolescent and then productive adults.  We’ll have fun and share our own personal experiences, some humorous, some sad, but in the long run, we’ll understand how nature works, and when we should not intrude.

You will get an introduction to other propagation methods as we go beyond seeds in this series,.  The class is divided into 2 parts, held on Thursdays. Interactive student participation requires bringing items to class for sharing and project making.

Registration for all classes: www.pvrpd.org or call 482-1996, cost for each 2 class session $29.00. Pleases refer to Catalog # 9041.101 when registering.

Portions of the article appeared in Gardening Coaches blog and in Western Business Journal.

share save 256 24 Carol Haverty Leads Welcome to the Garden Classes March 13 and 20

Fall / Winter 2013

Romanesco

Romanesco May 2013 300x225 Fall / Winter 2013Camarillo Community Gardens is accepting New Members and Gardeners for the Waiting List.

If You  Are Interested in becoming a CCG Member, please e-mail us at CCGGARDENNEWS@GMAIL.COM

share save 256 24 Fall / Winter 2013

Lumber Companies / BLM Trying to Eliminate Logging Protests with “No Public Access to White Castle” Policy

Ol Forest BLM White Castle Tree Sit
LoggingVirginForest Lumber Companies / BLM Trying to Eliminate Logging Protests with “No Public Access to White Castle” Policy

Public access revoked to area of proposed logging on Dec 24. Meaning that the 6 month old White Castle Tree Sit will also be closed to public access to ensure that the forest is cut without hindrance to loggers in what is some of the last of native forest.

Foresters, Legislators, BLM and Conservationists Square Off Over Dwindling Old Growth Forest The Bureau of land management proposed Early Thursday morning, November 21st the Bureau of Land proposed a 2 year closure of 15 miles of public roads in the Roseburg BLM district.

The BLM proclaimed found no significant impact in closing the area to public access. If there are no official appeals filed the area closure will begin Dec. 24th and the 6 month old White Castle Tree Sit will be closed to public access as well to ensure that the forest is cut without the witness of environmental interests and to minimize hindrance to loggers.

Cascadia Forest Defenders (CFD) who have been occupying unit number 8 of the proposed cut have vowed to remain in White Castle despite the closure and say they will continue to protect this heretofore untouched ecosystem from being destroyed. Members of CFD are sitting and physically blockading logging of this ecosystem because they are opposed to the destruction of native forests in the name of bad science.

Unit 8, where the sitters are located is some of the last native forest that has never been logged in this area of Oregon. All of the timber sale is within area proposed as critical habitat for the survival of the Northern Spotted Owl and is in the home range of five different owl pairs. Located in between the ‘dry eastside’ and ‘moist westside’ forests, White Castle is an incredible bio diverse rainforest, with Western Red Cedars, Sugar Pines and swamp ecosystems and is also located within the watershed of Myrtle Creek and the surrounding communities.

When asked what he thought about the closure, Joshua Eng, a forest defender who has been on site for almost 2 months replied, “It’s simple for me. The place has never been logged. Humans have never ruined it. They can go log somewhere else.” The simplicity of his statement goes to the core of CFD’s mission to protect natural forests in Cascadia. When activist Erin Grady was asked if there was a plan to leave before the closure goes into effect she stated, “We don’t intend to let White Castle fall without resistance. We don’t intend to let White Castle fall at all.”

White Castle was purchased for timber harvest by Roseburg Forest Products (RFP), one of the largest privately owned timber companies in the world. RFP has long hurt communities in Douglas County Oregon either by laying off mill workers to outsource their jobs overseas, or now by logging within the watershed of their own people. The watersheds of these lands provide the drinking water to 1.8 million Oregonians. Cascadia Forest Defenders do not intend to see the last of Oregon’s native forests clearcut and anticipate victory.

No Clear Cuts in White Castle!

# # #

Article filed by Robert Stone November 25, 2013

Portions of this article previously appeared in Newswire

share save 256 24 Lumber Companies / BLM Trying to Eliminate Logging Protests with “No Public Access to White Castle” Policy

Fall Peppers

Fresno peppers picked in August

Fresno peppers picked in August 1024x577 Fall PeppersFresno Peppers from the Fall Garden

Yes, it is the time for Harvest Moons, Fall Planting, and time for the Fall Camarillo Community Garden’s Meeting.

Come out this Thursday evening, September 20th and join us at 7:00 p.m. in Room 3 of the Community Center.

share save 256 24 Fall Peppers

Summer at Camarillo Community Gardens

A Black Krim Tomato grown in Camarillo Community Garden

BlackKrim Summer at Camarillo Community GardensHere’s a beautiful heirloom tomato we’re showing off- it’s a Black Krim – oh so dense and delicious!

It’s late summer and the vegetables are coming in- tomatoes, squash, chard, green beans, rhubarb, cucumbers and other yummy stuff!
It’s not too late to plant some late tomatoes!
Here is a link to a gardener’s encyclopdeia
Stay tuned for website updates!Courtyard garden Black Krim 8 1 12 169x300 Summer at Camarillo Community Gardens
We’ve been busy this month. We have signed on 2 new gardeners.

We are sharing our experience of how to create new community gardens
We’re happy to announce that another community garden is in the works, sponsored by the First Baptist Church on Temple Avenue. Make plans to attend their Garden Fair on August 25th!
10am to 4 pm, 1601 Temple Ave, Camarillo

Map to the Baptist Church

share save 256 24 Summer at Camarillo Community Gardens

Camarillo Community Gardens In the Star

CCGFirstFrame

The Ventura County Star ran a great article on the garden and our search for new garden locations. They even created a video, shown below:

Read the full article here: “Second Site Sought for Community Garden

 

share save 256 24 Camarillo Community Gardens In the Star

Garden Predators and Antonio Garden

Perrigrine Falcon in Camarillo Heights

The Antonio Garden should see fewer rodents problems in future due to natural predation.

Bobcat Garden Predators and Antonio GardenThere are bobcats living in the barranca just past the condos. First, we had one, then it took a mate, and now there are 2 half-grown bob kittens roaming the hills.

When the first one showed up, we had coyotes, rabbits and squirrels, but not a single house cat on the hill. The adult bobcats have tangled with the coyotes who leave the area alone now. Caring for the kittens has reduced the adults’ range this last year, and the impact on the local rodents has been dramatic.

The bobcats has reduced the quail population considerably, but now we have gone from being over run with rabbits and squirrels to being almost rodent free. A biologist recently said the way you judged bobcat presence was the lack of jack rabbits

An adult bobcat ranges a mile or more in any direction, but the kittens only venture less than a mile. After eliminating everything except the gophers, I expect the kittens to be showing up at the garden along with their parents to help out with the squirrel and rabbit problemsFalcon4 300x154 Garden Predators and Antonio Garden.

Another natural predator that should be familiar to you in the garden is the falcon.

We are lucky to have a pair successfully nesting in the area. After creating a more meadow-like yard, open to the sky, the falcons have spent a lot of time working my garden and orchard areas.

Together with the red-tail and red-shouldered hawks and resident owls on patrol, our rodent problems are greaetly reduced.

Now, if they would just work on the gophers…

share save 256 24 Garden Predators and Antonio Garden

What to Plant When the Weather Can’t Decide

Shade Structure View From Above

Crazy Weather Planting Considerations

The weather we have had the last two winters has been quite puzzling. We had La Ninas predicted but got El Nino rains. And 92 degrees days followed by 45 degree days. East Winds (or Santanas) followed by monsoons.

What we are seeing in our gardens is cool weather crops bolting from the heat, and warm season veggies being challenged by the cold weather. Here  are a couple of ideas for you to consider.

Grow your own shade to protect your cool weather veggies

Here is the quandary – most veggies need full sun, some veggies need shade. How do we get both? And how do we maximize our limited gardening space?

How about a grow-your-own shade system.

ShadeStructureView1 300x210 What to Plant When the Weather Cant Decide

Shade Structure View From Above

I wish I could give credit for this idea, but forget where it came from. Shade structures from light wood frames and chicken wire or light mesh makes a sturdy support for climbing or sprawling plants. The supporting frame can be any convenient size, and can be readjusted to change the shadow cast.

The frames double the amount of growing space with a shade providing plant, given full access to the sun, and cool weather veggies in their own micro-climate.

Sprawling plants, such as cucumbers or peas provide shade and developing fruit benefit from being kept off the cold, damp ground.

ShadeStructureView2 300x210 What to Plant When the Weather Cant Decide

Shade Structure Side View

Other early developing plants that needs support are determinate tomatoes. Try growing these on mesh and the fruit will hang out the bottom, waiting for you.

‘Determinant’ means the plant’s genetics have determined the number of tomatoes they will grow, and they grow them all at once.

These fruit heavily, suddenly, and tend to be early season varieties – which means they are in and out before summer really hits.

New Zealand Spinach is another possibility. This plant is not a  true spinach, grows rapidly, easily, and adapts well to our weather.

Ours was started from 1 packet of seeds in 1952. This plant has proved to be both drought and heat tolerant (although not at the same time).

NewZealandSpinach1 300x239 What to Plant When the Weather Cant Decide

New Zealand Spinach

This under-appreciated green is very high in nutrients, often 50% more than ‘real’ spinach. It gives a slightly spicy taste to recipes calling for spinach. The leaf is thicker than spinach and slightly fuzzy, giving it more texture than true spinach.

Another nice thing about this plant is that is doesn’t care if it is hot or cold – or both.

It grows quickly enough that you can adjust the light that passes through simply cutting it back harder or not. If let go, it forms a dense mat that covers the ground, preventing weeds. Any excess, with all the water and nitrogen it contains, does wonders for your compost pile.

Cool Weather Veggies to Grow in the Shade

Understory veggies that would benefit from the shade and cooler micro-climate include shorter lettuces  (such as the ‘cut-n-come-again’, mache mixes, or other baby lettuces) in front, with taller varieties such as Romaine, chard, or taller cabbage family plants (broccoli, cauliflower, etc.) placed to the rear.

The stair-step arrangement allows air and predators access to your plants, keeping them dry and free from bugs and diseases. Or at least, that’s the theory icon wink What to Plant When the Weather Cant Decide Our experience with aphids hiding in curled leaves shows the value of keeping areas open - watch that drama unfold.

The outlook is bright for predatory insects. The long wet winter has given us an abundant crop of predatory insect. An army of lady bug larvae was emerging in this morning’s warmth – and heading off to feed…

Remember when ordering seeds this year Renee’s Coupon Code that brings Camarillo Community Garden 25% of each purchase is FR442A – as we mentioned in this post on our new partner.

share save 256 24 What to Plant When the Weather Cant Decide

Saving Seeds

Download the Seed Saving Handbook

Saving Seeds in the Garden

Saving Seed 300x212 Saving Seeds

Download the Seed Saving Handbook

Now that we have been harvesting our crops, a number of people have asked about seed saving. Today I got a a copy of a new publication on seed saving. Although it is designed for teachers with school gardens, there is a bounty of really useful information included for everyone.

I have loaded the book onto our site, and you can read it by clicking this link: A Handful of Seeds – SEED STUDY AND SEED SAVING FOR EDUCATORS, by Tina Poles, Occidental Arts and Ecology Center. If you would like to save a copy to your computer, right-click the link and select ‘save as…’ from the pop-up menu.

As I said, this is meant for use in schools, but you will find everything from basic botany, parts of flowers named and explained, what (and why) are there fruits, essays on our major food crops and our food pioneers.

share save 256 24 Saving Seeds

Biodynamics and Permaculture

FairyTaleMoon

forest garden1 300x188 Biodynamics and PermacultureBiodynamic gardening, and its close relative, permaculture, are two very popular styles of gardening. Biodynamics and permaculture topics have been popular for many years, but much of the information is based on folk-lore, superstition, and untested ideals. Biodynamic farming is similar to organic production, and like an organic garden, no synthetic pesticides or fertilizers are used.

A biodynamic farm is viewed as its own ecosystem and most often includes a diverse mix of crops and livestock, which are considered complimentary. Biodynamic farmers use “unique preparations” and compost. Planting, cultural operations and harvesting are guided by celestial events.

With a mix of organic principles and cosmic spirituality, practitioners believe their compost emanates “energetic life forces to vitalize vegetables, plants, flowers, lawns, gardens, farms and our earth.”

While much of mainstream agriculture is unconvinced about the value of biodynamic tenents, UCCE farm advisor Glenn McGourty sees their value.

Many of the precepts do seem to be viable, and recently, many are being tested in a scientific manner by University agricultural researchers. This article in the San Francisco Examiner suggests that the ‘mainstreaming’ of biodynamics is close at hand. There are currently 75 California wine producers either certified biodynamic or in transition and the number is growing by 15%t each year.

Others, as suggested in this Agricultural And Natural Resources News blog post, think the system is a ‘hoax’, and are  “shocked and outraged” that UC Cooperative Extension is co-sponsoring a “Shortcourse in Biodynamic Winegrowing.”

Napa County farm advisor Glenn McGourty says such farming systems “are well documented to improve soil quality, grow productive crops, reduce the need for petrochemical inputs, recycle farm byproducts in a safe and effective way, and provide a gentler footprint on nature compared to some practices used by conventional growers.”

“There are lessons for all of agriculture in some of the basic agronomy that biodynamic farmers practice,” McGourty continues.

I am in contact with several of the farm advisers noted in the stories and hope to be able to present you with detailed research on this subject – so stay tuned!

Update!

Here is a link to an article titled, “The Science Behind Biodynamics” by Lynn Carpenter-Boggs, Center for Sustaining Agriculture and Natural Resources, Washington State University.

Biodynamics (BD) is experiencing an upsurge in interest, along with related organic and sustainable farming practices. However, BD has some unique aspects that are poorly understood and steeped in myth. Biodynamics may not be the cure-all that some practitioners claim it to be, but the BD system clearly holds potential to improve agricultural and horticultural production and to teach us about beneficial microorganisms and biochemistry.

What is Biodynamics, and What is it Used For?

Biodynamics is an esoteric approach to agriculture created by Austrian philosopher Rudolf Steiner. Steiner was also the father of the philosophy “anthroposophy,” anthroposophic art, anthroposophic medicine, Waldorf schools, Camphill communities, Eurythmy dance, and several other movements in science and culture. In 1924 a group of farmers concerned with declining soil and food quality approached Steiner for a solution. Steiner, neither a farmer nor a scientist, drew on traditional European farming mythology and new impulses from anthroposophy to build BD. Biodynamics was envisioned to not only produce ample food and fiber, but also to heal and nourish the people who depend on these products by healing the soil, plants, animals, and earth.

You can continue reading here

Biodynamics (BD) is experiencing an upsurge in interest, along with related organic and sustainable farming practices. However, BD has some unique aspects that are poorly understood and steeped in myth. Biodynamics may not be the cure-all that some practitioners claim it to be, but the BD system clearly holds potential to improve agricultural and horticultural production and to teach us about beneficial microorganisms and biochemistry.

What is Biodynamics, and What is it Used For?

Biodynamics is an esoteric approach to agriculture created by Austrian philosopher Rudolf Steiner. Steiner was also the father of the philosophy “anthroposophy,” anthroposophic art, anthroposophic medicine, Waldorf schools, Camphill communities, Eurythmy dance, and several other movements in science and culture. In 1924 a group of farmers concerned with declining soil and food quality approached Steiner for a solution. Steiner, neither a farmer nor a scientist, drew on traditional European farming mythology and new impulses from anthroposophy to build BD. Biodynamics was envisioned to not only produce ample food and fiber, but also to heal and nourish the people who depend on these products by healing the soil, plants, animals, and earth.

share save 256 24 Biodynamics and Permaculture
Web service provided by Camarillo Online Marketing.com