Category Archives: Food Bank Gardening

You’ll Never Guess How Much Food I Grew in 2014!

Drum roll, please! Last year, on my powerhouse of a lot (only 4,000 square feet), I grew 172 pounds of organic produce!!! And all the single ladies laid 29 1/2 dozen eggs! Isn’t that mind-boggling?! I am as proud as an urban farm girl can be!

Here are some of the things I’m most proud of:

donationsI donated 10 pounds of food to the food bank. I was under the 10% goal I was hoping for, but it added something to someone’s meals and that makes me happy.

46230_727250547313877_9143299375650060489_nI harvested (and ate and canned) 22 pounds of strawberries! Turns out strawberries are the second largest producer on my urban farm. The most delicious ground cover ever!!!

10557300_751268454912086_1498603141024872937_nI totally met my tomato-growing goal with 52 pounds of ripe red tomatoes! My total yield was 71 pounds if you include the green ones, which I used! So, why not count those babies too?!

10154325_688862607819338_8938740373409317194_nI always add one new element to the farm each year. Last year, I added to aeroponic Tower Gardens, which I used almost exclusively for growing salad greens (I grew my tomatillos in them too – just over 9 pounds of them!). I was able to harvest 22 pounds of greens from my towers last year! Seriously, Eric and I would go out to the towers with our salad bowls and harvest huge bowls of salad that we’d eat almost daily. Best investment I’ve made in a long time!

I can hardly wait to see what abundance 2015 holds! I’m so grateful for this little farm!

First_GardenWant to see how I make it happen? Join me for a class at the Urban Farm Schoolhouse and I’ll let you in on my tricks of the trade! I’ve come along way from this one raised bed where I started and I’ve love every minute of it!

chalkClick here to come grow with me!

Sharing in the Goodness: An Interview with Solid Ground

GiveRecently, I had the opportunity to chat with the folks at Solid Ground. I was honored that they wanted to hear about my story. We got to talk about what I love about being a giving gardener and about the experiences I’ve had as a child and as an adult that inspire me to keep giving.

goodnessIf you’re on the Solid Ground mailing list, you likely already saw my face on the cover of their quarterly newsletter! I am featured in the lead story! If not, you can read the article by clicking this link: ‘Sharing in the Goodness.’ Neat!

 

Schoolhouse Construction Update #2

photo (5)I finally have a moment to breathe. What a wild and amazing ride this has been! The schoolhouse is nearing completion – next week it will be painted, well-lit, furnished and ready for classes!

image (1)I will post a full reveal with before and after pictures next week when I can finally say the project is “done.” For now, I’ll share with you what’s made me so happy this week. Windows!

photo (6)IMG_3640My best friend said the other day that everything felt real when she saw the picture with the window. I knew exactly what she meant. The moment I walked out to the schoolhouse, looked out the newly-installed window and could see the garden and chicken coop from inside, I was overcome by emotions. This is real and it is happening!

IMG_3457I rewatched The Field of Dreams…again. I can’t help but feel an uncanny connection with Kevin Costner’s character. It started out as a crazy idea, a calling, one that I timidly shared with Eric over pizza in November. And like the wife in the movie, Eric enthusiastically supported and encouraged me in making this dream a reality. I moved forward in faith that if I build it, hopeful gardeners and eager learners would come. And they are. Classes are filling up and I am able to share the space with my community just like I hoped to do. I was able to make my first Lettuce Link donation (I’m donating 10% of everything I earn through farm school!) and it felt even better than I expected. Every time I step foot in the schoolhouse, I wear a smile I can’t shake.

“I don’t know what lies around the bend, but I’m going to believe that the best does.” – L.M. Montgomery (Anne of Green Gables)

Upcoming Classes I’m Super Excited About:

Mosaic Flower Stone Workshop – I can hardly wait for this one! Art + Garden = Magic!

Family Favorites – One class, all my favorite foods! Neat!

 

Schoolhouse Construction Update #1

I mentioned earlier, but I’ll say it again – it’s happening!!! The schoolhouse construction has begun and it is quite possible that I’ll be able to host my first spring class on the 15th in my new space! Of course, it won’t be totally done by then, but it will likely be damn close! Words cannot express how thrilled I am! This is making my midwinter merrier for sure!

An outsider wouldn’t notice much difference at this point, but we certainly do. Much time as been spent hauling things out of the space so I even have an empty space to work with. And that, my friends, has been huge. We’ve also begun prepping the space for electrical (for all my awesome new lighting, which the whole interior design has been crafted around – that’s enough for a whole other post!). Those super awesome schoolhouse lights have been ordered and are on their way!

imageI wanted to replace the existing door with a door that had a window so that it’d have a bit more character and would let more light in. I thought we’d be able to use an old antique door we took off the basement door frame, but it turns out it was just a bit too big. Luckily, we have a super amazing contractor who listens to my vision and pays attention to my style. He went to the ReStore in Ballard and scored an even more awesome door than we had before. The window is quite a bit longer and will now match up with the bottom of the windows I’m putting in the side of the garage. Plus, it fits perfectly! Score! My mother-in-law said it best, “It’s a door to a whole new world!” A world where I get to bring people together in the name of homegrown food and live my dream! I’ll take it!