Tuesday, February 7, 2012

More Photos! - Read the Story Below For Greenhouse Info

Soil preparer extraordinaire Nat

Hi - Just posted these photos, left and below, tonight (2/8). They're of hard working Nat & Nick. Nick's a FHHS student from Jenny Wilson's Community Projects class who just started work in the greenhouse, as a project, today. Nat is a biologist who came all the way out from the East Coast of the US to work in Friday Harbor after reading about internships on our Land & Sea webpage!! Over the last week or so, Nat and others have put together the greenhouse beds and entry ramp, brought in and amended planting soil, and today Nick started with them working with the soil, filling in paths with donated shredded bark, and getting ready to plant starts! These guys are wonderful!
(Thank you Rikki Swinn for the lumber that surrounds these lovely beds!)
Look for more posts soon -  about the greenhouse and about the food to be grown there!!

Nick, getting right to work!

Nat worked on building these beds over the last couple days

This lovely rich soil was composted from the sod removed from the garden trail and the greenhouse site.

From little things, big things grow - plant starts!

Isn't this pretty? We'll post more photos, and stop and talk to the guys if you see them in the greenhouse!

Two Great Things!  Greenhouse Up and Going, and high school community service project Public Garden Trail built

We've been too busy to post for a while , and there's a lot to write about, so maybe look for catching-up updates this week.
the Greenhouse Guys - Cody Pierce, Parker Satin, and Ryan Cole!

Mentor, organizer, and cheerleader Marion Melville. the Greenhouse Boys, and volunteers

Contractor Terry Whalen, Jim C. John S,. Marion, Jenny

Volunteer FH general contractor Terry Whalen, carpenter Chris Wilson, Ryan, Cody, and volunteer student helper

Chris, Cody, Parker, Terry Whalen and John Stamey gettin 'er fastened down.

The dedicated crew hard at work

Steadfast and hilarious Jim Cole and Chris Wilson and crew

The amazing greenhouse is up Thank you Community Service Class students who did this project:  Cody Pierce, Parker Satin, and Ryan Cole. And thanks to the Greenhouse Guys' primary mentor and force of nature Marion Melville and contractor Terry Whalen, who took on a very big project and saw it through with a wish to give to the community, teacher Jenny Wilson and her husband, carpenter Chris Wilson, Ryan's parents Jim and Cathy Cole, John Stamey and Lenore Bayuk, grant approval/greenhouse research/site mapping mentor Scott Fitzstephens, Gates Foundation and kind committee, Marion's brothers from off island, Liz Keeshan, Soroptimists, Browne Building Supply, Darren, Sheila, Diane Olshefsky's and everybody at Harbor Rental, Dana and Stacy Baker, Kelly, Phil, and everyone at Friday Harbor Electric, Kerry Geiser, Pete Rose, David Kelly, Debbie Emery, Maureen See and Ingrid Carlson, Howie Rosenfeld, Jamie Stephans and all those members of the SJ County Council who took a positive interest in helping this project happen, Nancy Vejvoda, building comrades Mike P. and Ryan Ochoa,  Jim and everyone at OPALCO, Mike, Gary, Roxanne, Amy, and Sandy and the FH town offices, and Mayor Lacher and FH Town Council, high school/middle school principal Fred Wood, John Towson of the Lions and his Leos, Jack McKenna, Colleen and Bruce Gregory Howe, the incomparable Ian Byington, Jack Cory, and Sharon Kivisto, Jim Lawrence, Rikki Swinn, Melanie, Chris, and the SJ County Asssesor's Office, Gerry Warren, Matt & Maureen Marinkovich, mentor Linda Degnan Cobos, Aaron Kendzoriak - former FH Community Service class member, now an Evergreen U. student -  and Tasha Frey - community member and FH grad - who had a vision for a greenhouse, and a vision for this spot as a community garden, and who both helped get this going - and the so many people who's names I haven't thought of - but will - who offered help, and worked hard and selflessly to get the greenhouse here.)
Community treasure John Stamey
FHHS grad Aaron Kenzoriak dreamed big.

Activist, community member, mom Tasha Frey

THE TRAIL CREW - Keith and Kevin

Keith Dimmick and Kevin Aguilar - trail heroes.Thanks you Dimmick and Aguilar families!

Another wonderful and long lasting project at the garden was done by FHHS students Kevin Aguilar and Keith Dimmick. This project also originated in Jenny Wilson's Community Service class and was also mentored first by Scott, then by Linda, with support from Jenny, Fred Wood, and the Aguilar family.
First, Kevin and Keith visited Colleen Gregory Howe's Mitchell Bay Farm on a Land & Sea field trip with Linda. There, Colleen gave the boys advice on healthy fruit trees, and a first hand look at bee hives with stories on how they work. Kevin then decided to visit Island Gardens landscaping for information on path-building. He visited Ace Hardware, who generously donated weed mat and path making materials. Keith found sources for shredded bark, and trucking from his dad. With Scott, Kevin and Keith researched path making, made a map, and drew a design. Both young men visited deputy County Administrator Pete Kelly and SJI County Administrator Pete Rose's offices for advice. Both boys worked at the site marking the path area, and Kevin spent one warm afternoon with equipment from Harbor Rental,  removing sod with Bruce Robinson, Matt, Linda, and Maureen. Then these two boys designed and - with hard work of their families, built - the beautiful wood chip public path that now runs through the Land & Sea Garden.

Members of FH Middle SchoolCindy William's wonderful Quest class working in the Land & Sea garden this fall with fall garden manager Bruce Robinson. They planted garlic and favas on this day.

And on this day, Quest students dug Ozette potatoes with Linda
2011- The Quest class dug 2 big cases of potatoes. Linda couldn't wash them in time for the community dinner this time, so they are being stored to use as seed potatoes and to cook up a little later for the Quest class. They are delicious!
In Oct. students from Cindy Williams' FH middle school Quest class dug Ozette potatoes in the garden with Linda Degnan Cobos one day (the potatoes were grown in our garden from seed potatoes that originated with Salish Sea/San Juan islands native people, and that were gathered wild and donated by biologist Madrona Murphy) and planted garlic and a fava cover crop with Bruce Robinson, using beans and seeds grown in our garden.

2010 school year, members of Ruthie Paul's high school cooking class dug the 2010 Ozette potato crop, 3 big cases full, which went to a community dinner. 

These pickles were made by the cooking class at FHHS run by the amazing andd resourceful Ruthie Paull. The cukes for the pickles, and the garlic and onions were donated through Land & Sea by the big-hearted Heritage Farm CSA (now known as Happy Belly CSA. - look for some great things from these community minded farmers!)
Ruthie at home in in her teaching kitchen at the high school. In the foreground you can see garlic grown in the Land & Sea garden, and donated by Land and Sea. That beautiful green basil on the table is from farmers Cam and Pablo at the CSA garden at Heritage Farm (aka in 2011-12 Full Belly Farm CSA).
This is incredible salsa made from local canned tomatoes by Ruthie's students. Aren't these beautiful? These late-season tomatoes were all picked by Linda and donated to the class by Jim and Lisa Lawrence of Thirsty Goose Farm.
Cooking class students' tools and products

An end of the season harvest of Thirsty Goose late-season heirloom tomatoes. They are so delicious!
Heritage/Full Belly fresh fragrant basil grown, picked and donated by CSA farmers Cam and Pablo, ready for chopping
Land & Sea's first Land & Sea garden manager Tim McGee working at his own lovely Heritage Farm CSA garden, where the cucumbers, basil, garlic, and squash donated to Ruthie's class by 2010 CSA managers Cam and Pablo were grown.

All photos in this post - Linda Degnan Cobos

SAT/SUN Pruning Workshops for Older Fruit Trees!  
10 am 2/11&12 - no equipment needed

Hi Everybody

We have a great opportunity this coming Saturday (and now a Sunday workshop at 10 am has been added) for anyone interested in learning a bit about pruning older fruit trees! The lovely heritage apple and pear trees located at our garden site on Blair St. across from the High School and Middle School will be pruned this Saturday, at 10 am.  (An additional workshop for those who can't come Saturday has been added and will be this Sunday at 10 am.)

If you attended the workshop last year then this year will be nice to see how to prune your older tree a following year.  If this is new to you, then welcome!  You will enjoy your time.  Last year, people had to brave a pretty chilly morning but it was so interesting the whole crowd stayed. Who knows what the weather holds this year?

This simple workshop will be about an hour and a half and will be of help to people who have older fruit trees. If you're interested in attending, please let us know by emailing back to slowfoodlandandsea@gmail.com. or call Linda at 317-5890 (leave a message).  We hope to film the pruning - wish us luck!

Hope to see you Sat or Sun's workshop! (or both!)

washing beautiful carrots. 
Look for greens and winter vegetables at the SJI Farmers Market.
Local produce is also available from Nootka Rose, Blue Moon, Talking Horse and other San Juan islands farms at the SJI Food Co Op on Mullis in FH and the San Juan Island Farmers Market!

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

FHHS students Parker, Cody,  and Ryan with co-mentor Marion Melville, and deputy administrator David Kelly after the students presented their request for permission to site their greenhouse at the Land & Sea Community Garden site. After hearing from the boys and County Administrator Pete Rose, the council voted 5-0 in favor of their request. This team of students are in FHHS teacher Jenny Wilson's Community Projects class, and were mentored by Land & Sea mentors Scott Fitzstephens, Marion Melville, and Linda Degnan Cobos.  Photo: Linda Degnan Cobos.
Above: the boys outside the county council office, with one of their 3 mentors, the very kind and wonderful Marion Melville and deputy administrator David Kelly, a really nice guy. Everybody looks so happy! Pete Rose, our County's administrator - also a really nice, thoughtful man - and David Kelly, Debbie Emery (who has given another group of students doing a trails project for Community Service help, by letting them know the pathways everyone uses, as she observes students and others passing below her office window daily as she works), and everyone in the county administration was so helpful and supportive to these guys, even in the middle of all the other hard work they do every day.  Maureen See and Ingrid Carlson were also so encouraging to the boys and gave them great technical guidance to prepare for their presentation, and yesterday the Council members had great questions, and seemed to like what the boys put together a lot. After a short, thoughtful discussion, they voted all in favor.
Now the boys go to finish their contract for the grant.
These guys are accomplishing a lot, and thanks to all these wonderful people, they're getting a great education on the way.
Ian posted a story on the boys and their project on the SJ Update, and a generous islander this week sent Land & Sea a donation to the boys, to go towards the costs to maintain the greenhouse.
The boys went to Islanders Bank and opened a special account for the greenhouse with that money -  Brenna at Islanders helped us on that, and also gave the guys a lot of background info on the process, and encouragement.

All those kids in Jenny Wilson's Community Projects class are so great, and she does a great job guiding them. They are all so motivated, it's inspiring to see.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Community Garden on Blair and Second - last year's crops.

The three boys from Jenny Wilson's high school Community Service class - Cody, Parker, and Ryan - working on building a community greenhouse, hope to site it on this educational garden property. The boys are also putting together a plan b and c in the event this site doesn't work out; for other possible places to use as an alternate set up site, or as places for temporary storage if the greenhouse is sited here, but needs to be moved at a later date to accommodate the county's plans for the property.

The boys' aim, as they explain it, is to grow greens for the school lunch program in their greenhouse, and make it sustainable by recruiting underclassmen each year to carry oversight of the greenhouse on, and to use the income from the greens to pay for supplies and maintenance. They decided this garden site they're hoping for is a pretty great spot for this use.

Heritage pear trees and the garden field . Maybe there will be a pretty little greenhouse out here, too!

What has happened so far:  Land & Sea mentors Scott and Linda visited the Community Services class and talked about the community garden. These three students came up with the greenhouse idea for the site, then worked with Scott on getting a grant to fund the purchase. The agreement the chapter has for use of the property would have to be expanded to allow the boys to site their greenhouse. Scott, Linda and Marion of Land & Sea, as the contractor, checked with the county to see if that might be possible, and got a positive response. In the meantime, thanks to the boys' and mentor Scott's hard work and the work of another greenhouse student years before, the boys were approved for a grant. Now the three boys are working to get on the County Council's agenda to see if final approval from the County Council members is possible.

Some history: The opportunity for the boys to get this far in this project was also made possible by the work of another Community Service class student a few years back who also was successful in getting funding to build a community greenhouse. That greenhouse was not built due to the difficulty of finding a property owner willing to site the project; the difficulty most times due to liability and related issues. The schools, fairgrounds, and other properties became not possible then for those reasons. His initial work, and the foundation holding the grant, helped make Parker, Ryan and Cody's new project possible.

Cody, Ryan, and Parker's project would be under their supervision, under the auspices of Land & Sea Slow Food chapter, so that if sited on the property on Blair and Second it would become part of our county agreement, if approved, and included in our insurance coverage. Land & Sea chapter would be willing to take ownership of the greenhouse in order to make this project possible, with the express intent to turn ownership over to the school or county if ever that is possible or desired by the school or county, and to make the greenhouse completely available for use by the school and community until that time comes. Any other ideas for ownership of the greenhouse will be welcomed;  Land & Sea's whole interest in this project is in making it possible. - Any one willing to take on ownership and responsibility in our place so this greenhouse can happen in a timely manner will be welcomed!

The greenhouse the boys chose is able to be moved, in case the time should come that the county would need the property for other uses.
These kids are really amazing, and so motivated! They worked on this individually and as a group all through the break to get their project ready to present.

A separate bank account within our non profit chapter would be opened, would be overseen by the kids who run the project, and would be devoted simply to the greenhouse. Any money coming in through Land & Sea to the greenhouse project will go into this account and then directly back to the greenhouse.
(See info at bottom of post about our main account).

Ryan, Parker and Cody are making plans for presentations to the FH Town and SJ County Councils, and will be doing a number of presentations to the public about their project.
We wish them the best with their project. They're amazing boys doing something a lot of people in our county are really excited about! Great job Guys!

[Land & Sea chapter's policy on financial donations: Donations go to our account at Islander's Bank. Any and all money that comes in goes directly back out into the community. Although we've rarely actively sought donations, donations offered to us have funded an irrigation system, our insurance coverage for the garden, and a small one-time stipend for our Community Projects/garden manager mentor this season.
Also funded: scholarships to the Quillisascut teaching farm, for 4 local young people so far. These scholarships are ongoing, and especially targeted toward local high school students and graduates, and have been provided by two generous local donors. The experiences the Quillisascut opportunity has provided for kids from our community has been called life changing by the participants. We actively seek young people who have been through Andy and Liz's Food For Thought Chef program. The first student we sent to Quillisascut  2 summers ago was a high school student in our Slow Food Youth program we had placed as an intern with Quail Croft Cheese here on the island. Her scholarship was provided by an  island resident who's also allowed us space in her greenhouse on the west side to grow starts in this spring.
Donations from a local working couple will also help fund a farm work internship program for young students, now in the works.]

A reminder of the lovely harvest from last year's first garden.

Garlic in the garden. We're not using the irrigation system at this point - there is plenty of water still falling as rain!

Here's the crowd that braved the chilly weather for the workshop pruning older trees, a couple Sundays ago.  We had close to 30 participants sign up! That was fun!
the cutting hook tool thing - it's the wonderful tree pruning apparatus!

An older pruning tool. The tree pruner likes these even better than the modern metal ones  available these days - the older wood ones are lighter and work really well. These were purchased in Eastern WA.

Up in the tree on a fruit picking ladder. A set of steps, one leg for support - a nice design that gets you in close up high.

Conservative pruning on older trees that haven't been pruned for a while - map out the pruning over a couple year's time in this situation was the advice given by this particular tree pruner.

The chill was actually good for tree pruning, the tree would find the trimming less stressful because of it.

And a couple of the pears a few weeks later, now showing more signs of buds and leaves.

Here's one of the apples after pruning.