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De Witt and work

May 22, 2014

I left early this morning for the UA community college in DeWitt.  They invited me to come to help them organize a community garden at their campus. IMG_9227 They do have an ag program at the college, a neighboring elementary school, and the county extension office abuts the property.   All great infrastructure for getting a community garden started, which was the intent of the meeting. We had representatives from college administration, their Ag teacher, a community leader, the extension agents and Master Gardeners– all key players in getting something like this started.


I think one thing everyone needs to consider when planning any project, is the long term maintenance.  Plus, we also need to know the interest in the community. Gone are the days when we can “build it and they will come”.    We discussed the ins and outs of starting a community garden and how to generate interest.  They asked a lot of questions, and of course, I answered them, but asked them even more.  They have some lofty goals: to work with their local schools, food banks, low income families, students at the college and families in De Witt.  I think they understand what they need to do and have ideas on how to build a game plan.  I also suggested visiting local community gardens and meeting with folks who started them. I will help them do that in the upcoming months.

Their site is level, in full sun and the soil is plentiful. IMG_9231 IMG_9230 They are still considering raised beds for several reasons–drainage, plot delineations,  and ease of gardening.  They have ample water lines, but will still need to build beds and multiple heads to water.  They are also in the planning stages of building a commercial kitchen.  Offering cooking classes, or even smaller samples at the farmers market with recipes can help folks know what to do with an abundance of fresh vegetables.















Then it was back to the office to try to catch up from being gone for two days. We are definitely down to the wire for the state conference, but we also have Saturday training applications coming in (or requests) and Advanced MG applications.  Remember to spread the word about the statewide training–the deadline to apply is June 6.

I am also getting used to my new car. I do like it, but it doesn’t have a user book–only a small “cheat sheet” which I haven’t read thoroughly.  The biggest differences are there is no  gear stick to shift into reverse, drive, etc.  Instead there is a dial on the middle console.  I keep reaching for a stick, but quickly remember. There is also no key to start the vehicle. As long as it is in the car, the car will start with the push of a dial–which many cars are now using.   And lastly, when I filled up for the first time, I looked frantically for a gas cap, only to discover this is cap-less.  I am sure I will find out more about the car as the days go by and the miles tag on, but so far, so good!

It definitely was hotter and less windy today.  It was pretty intense this afternoon.  Although we had a lot of rain last week, we are beginning to dry out. I came home and watered. Pay particular attention to newly planted plants and those in containers.

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