Sunday, September 20, 2009

Back to the Land

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After a long summer away from the Doghouse I've been putting energy into the garden, testing out some ideas and research I've been doing about taking care of the soil. What I've done thus far:
1. Fork up the beds whose summer crops had died back.
2. Mix in some composted horse manure bought at a premium from Berkeley Horticulture (the guilt)
3. Seed a variety of cover crops into areas that I'm not quite ready to plant. Fava beans, Austrian Winter Vetch, and some Red & White Clover. I sprung for the innoculant.
4. Seed a bed with a few varieties of radish and some turnip.
5. Seed a six pack of broccoli & cabbage for transplant once the soil is ready.
6. Transplant in giant chard, italian parsley, sage, and peas.
6. Snag a few bales of straw from David's house via PARK(ing) Day: "Hollywood Hoe-Down"
7. Harvest the forest of Arundo donax that regularly springs up along the fence and prop it to dry for eventual chipping via Anida's chipper (Assuming it's still up for use.)
8. THE CHLORAMINE ISSUE. Treating garden water with aquatic life protector & a few teaspoons of quality liquid fertilizer with no industrially processed nutrients.
9. Trap out 5 rats, all five clean kills, buried in corner by comfrey.
10. New garden gate: 1 redwood post, wire.
10. General weeding, raking, trimming, pruning, hacking, spading, picking, chopping.
extra moon
Things learned:
1. Rats are suckers for peanut butter with a small piece of bread and a raisin stuck in it.\
2. Leave No Trace ethic is incorrect, it should be "Choose What Trace To Leave".
3. Deferred maintenance is often more difficult, time-consuming and tedious than daily maintenance.
4. Using weeds in the garden is tricky, my field mint was getting out of control but seemed to be keeping the ants out of the NW bed.
5. The distinction between and ecological decision and an aesthetic decision is constantly evolving.
6. The three primary elements are Camper, Campsite, and Campground
7. Started the 1859A Log, a journal of activities related to the house & garden that stays with this place the next tenants.

After a few months away from this project I decided that I should never be too busy to have a garden. Everytime I work around the house I have a sense of immense satisfaction and feel good physically and mentally. I also receive the added benefit of good food and increasingly healthy soil. I always have the time to garden but I often choose to spend it doing other things and pay farmers to do my gardening for me somewhere else. I think I have to put the same amount of calories into land as I take out or other energy sources have to be tapped to make up for the deficit, like fossil fuels. With all that extra energy we go the moon, make hollywood blockbusters, and build helicopters.

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1 comment:

xo-e said...

your sense of home and hearth are impeccable!
good work!