The Organic Garden is both a natural classroom and a year-round source of home-grown vegetables for residents and visitors.
We have been adding organic matter to the heavy clay soil for over 10 years and finally are able to work the soil easily. It took 4 years for the earthworms to show up, but now they are in every shovel full of dirt. We also added oyster mushroom mycelia one spring to improve the micelial network that holds water and nutrients close to the roots of the plants. Now our soil holds water better and plants are growing better.
We have had many challenges – from rolly-pollies who ate every bean plant to chickens who tore up the carefully crafted French Intensive beds to racoons who love the black-eyed peas and eggplant and don’t want to share.
We have had to learn how to become “Constant Gardeners” and tune in to the gardens every day to see what is needed – rather than the episodic gardeners that we were when we first came to the land. It is this daily communion with the garden that is the best teacher. Without any idea what to do or where to start, establishing an open awareness and communication with the “consciousness” of the garden informs our actions and leads to co-creative endeavor.