Friday, March 23, 2012

March 20, 2012 Meeting Summary


Summary by Susan Cunningham with some additions by Lloyd Klinedinst.

(If we have missed any of your contributions and suggestions at the meeting, please let us know. We will gladly email a correction and addition to these meeting notes. Thanks, all, for a lively and resourceful meeting.)

The Brownies from Troop 3438 presented the Garden Group with a new watering hose ,rolling carrier for it, and garden sprayer.  This will be a huge improvement over the one we used last year that sprayed the gardener as much as the garden!  And to top off their generous donation, they provided seeds for planting in both personal and community plots! THANK YOU, girls, for your kind and generous donation.

We double-checked who are all the gardeners for the coming year. Some of last year's participants still need to contact us. We are also trying to contact them. Plot assignments were also double-checked and corrections and additions made.

We discussed how to better manage and care for the 7 community plots in the front row and agreed that the gardeners whose plots are in each row will take responsibility for the community bed in that row.  That is, the gardeners in Row A will take care of the community plot labeled A, B row will take care of B, etc.  Some rows have more gardeners than others, so some of us  will be sure to help with that community bed.   This should also give us a chance to get to know each other better. We recommended management of taking the produce from each community plot to the Senior Center be handled in the same row by row manner.

Susan Cunningham and Jim Doering, with a little help from others at times, have been preparing the 7 community plots in the front row with mulched leaves, etc.  Those plots ARE NOW READY FOR PLANTING!

We discussed what to do about adding nutrition to our beds. (See a separate future email on this topic) Alice Whalen said this is the time to "feed" your garden with compost or other nutritious materials.  This is also a good time to add more vermiculite which holds the moisture during dry spells. 

Pacific Feed Store sells Permalite which is similar for $16.95 plus tax for a 4 cubic foot package.  That is enough for 2 or 3 garden plots, so it's best to go in with someone else on that.  Orschelin's sells sphagnum peat moss for $9.00 plus tax for 2.2 cubic feet.

As new gardeners join us, we will assign them plots no longer in use or new plots if they prefer to start from scratch.  If we provide the soil mix, we will ask for a donation of $15 per plot.  OR the gardener may prefer to fill the box herself.  Either way is fine.  Lloyd Klinedinst and Susan Cunningham will be the "go to" helpers for new gardeners.

Donna Timms asked maybe the parks department would provide us with a trash barrel and empty it just as they do with the other park receptacles.  Matt Vickers is going to ask about that.  Matt is also going to find out about our using the wood chips the city accumulates when it trims trees.

We discussed what to do with the walkways again.  Alice suggested layers of newspaper, then weed barrier (that black light-weight cloth used for landscaping) and then a layer of wood chips.  Lloyd suggested we try doing this on the first row or two to see how it works.   Anyone who knows where to get free or low cost wood chips, please let us know.

Joe Steger volunteered to turn the compost pile.  Others are encouraged to help with this.  Joe and Jim  talked after the meeting about getting some dirt to mix in with the compost which will help with the decomposing of the organic material.  Alice reminded us that "worms like dark places."

Susan will continue doing publicity and make sure there are garden applications in the box and at the library.

ARNOLD'S GARDEN - thanks to the Viehland family, we have the corner lot with all the trees to use.  Mae Viehland asked that it be called Arnold's Garden after her late husband who was once mayor of Pacific.  We are forming a committee to discuss plans for how to use that property.  Beth Koebel has identified the trees, and Lloyd is preparing a map so we know which are the fruit trees, etc.  There is also a raised area for a flower or shrub garden.  Volunteers are welcome to join the "Arnold's Garden Committee.  So far, these people have expressed interest in helping: Alice Whalen, Joe Steger, Chris Simpson and Donna Timms. Brandy Stockton also suggested and is exploring the possibility of edible landscaping for this area. She has contacts that may help us with this exciting feature.

We  also reminded ourselves of the excellent websites which Brandy Stockton and Alice Whalen, our expert consultants, have created and are maintaining for the Pacific Community Garden Group and for gardening in general. We have a blog page at http://pacificcgg.blogspot.com/ As described on the home page, it is "A place for the Pacific Community Garden Group of Pacific, MO to share info, pictures and updates on the Community Gardens" Alice also has a  page on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/GardeningwithAlice?sk=wall
If anyone needs help or coaching with using these valuable resources, just contact Lloyd.

 Dr. Lloyd Klinedinst

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