Thursday, April 12, 2012

The Boulevard garden is two weeks ahead of normal schedule! The garlic that we planted last fall is starting to come up. It seems like the straw mulch did the trick. Now the garlic beds are being watered and we should see some rapid growth over the next few weeks
We are going to have a bumper crop of garlic and other vegetables that we can hopefully sell at the Gunnison Farmers Market, restaurants, or family and friends.

The hardy preseason crop of greens, turnips, beets, and radishes that we planted in the hoop house are all germinated and seem to enjoy the hot humid confines of their hoop home. Above is a picture of the first spinach popping up out of the ground. The baby sprouts are never what you think they would like. Sometimes the hardest part of the early season is figuring out which sprouts are weeds or vegetables.

Currently we have planted six rows of greens radishes and turnips outside of the hoop house as our major crop that will follow after we harvest the hoop house. This week we are planning on planting Tibetan barley, carrots, beets, turnips, and rutabagas underneath row covers. Hopefully this will be the first of two waves of root crops for the entire season.

Happy planting!

Monday, April 2, 2012

Hello Everyone, 
We had a productive weekend with our urban agriculture crew. While the unusually warm weather beat down on our necks we built the Mountain Roots hoop house. This hoop house is a season extending structure that will allow us to grow our cold hardy plants on both ends of our gorwing season as well as some more warm weather prone plants during the middle of the summer. We amended the soil within it with aged manure and planted some radishs, turnips, and greens. Come the beginning of May we will harvest all of these preseason crops and replace them. Currently, we are thinking of planting melons in the middle with tomatoes, pole beans, and basil on the outside. In the next few weeks we will be planting much more!

Ian and Brian 

Monday, March 12, 2012

Hello World!
Over here in the high mountain valley we have accomplished many things!
We are essentially finished detailing a relationship between our urban agriculture cooperative and the Mountain Roots Food Project organization. After attending a potluck meeting with our cooperative share members, we were able to draft a proposal that explicated how we would exactly be working with this organization that promotes, facilitates, and empowers local food production. It seems that they will be purchasing all of the infrastructure items (i.e. fences, row covers, hoses, etc.) while we will be purchasing the consumable goods (seeds, electrical fees, soil amendments, etc.). In exchange for their fiscal charity we will be giving tours, hosting courses, and donating food throughout our growing season.
We also have a head start on our growing indoors. To cut the edge on the rather short growing season, we have started many seeds inside under a growing lamp. Our poc choi is getting taller everyday. One of the varieties of onions that we are planting, the redman, unfortunatly died out. We have since then, replanted all of the onions of that variety. 
Several other projects we have started not in conjunction with the cooperative include setting up cold frame season extending structures at a friends house. This structure will extend the growing season by acting like a mini greenhouse. We have also started some tomato starts in order to sell at a local garden festival hosted by the Gunnison Farmers Market. We have also began looking into the plausibility of beekeeping in our cold climate.
Till next time,
Enjoy the spring air!

Monday, February 20, 2012

Hello Everybody,

So begins the 2012 growing season. Although it is still chilly out (-15 last night!) we are getting prepared for a highly productive spring, summer, and fall. This year we (Ian & Brian) are learning the in's and outs of growing vegetables in some of the harshest growing conditions of the country.

For our internship/independent study we are working on a cooperative garden space located on the north side of Gunnison on Boulevard street. There are two properties involved for the upcoming season. Steve Shecter was kind enough to invite us to garden on his property which encompasses an undeveloped lot that has been a veggie patch for a few years now. Across the street a friendly woman, Susan, has allowed us to develop her perimeter yard space because she has a similar disliking for non native grass yards. 

As you can see below we are getting excited for the spring as a handstand is attempted atop a large pile of manure. Last fall a group of hopeful gardeners all came together to develop Steve and Susan's land. Together we gather hundreds of pounds of manure, leaves,  and straw to ammend Steve's garden beds and planted over 2500 cloves of garlic!

Currently we have over 700 onion starts germinating to be grown indoors in seed start trays for another 6 weeks. Next we will start some Pac Choy for early spring greens. There are a lot of details to be hammered out regarding the set up and organization of this cooperative gardening experiment. We know that Mountain Roots (a local non-profit) will be working with us, and we are excited to have their support. 

There will sure to be many posts as the season progresses. Check back soon and we will have garden schematics along with details about the project's organization.