Only one thing has decidedly changed: No more Thursday Community Dinners for the duration, since they inevitably draw way more than ten people. Otherwise, for we who are more in tune with nature than with the existing culture, not much changes here; or I should say, whatever massive, ongoing changes occur in the “outside world,”…
Tag Archives: commons
Yesterday evening, at another magical Community Dinner — — this one graced beforehand with Daisy’s chalk art — — and of course before which, we began to gather for our newly inaugurated family grace — I then happened to eat dinner sitting with Sydney (seated, in pink shirt above), an astonishing crone who hasn’t been…
Green Acres Village PHOTOS: Two Community Dinners, but first: last night’s podmate farewell dinner —
After one year, Solan has itchy feet, and will now travel to visit other intentional communities, larger and more rural, for the foreseeable future. An Aquarian, he loves group life, but this tiny place just feels too small for him — at least for now! We wish him well. And here’s our farewell dinner last…
Scavaging for the GANG garden — this morning, grass clippings!
Lots of them. A whole truckfull. From Indiana University groundskeepers. Whew!
The two IU groundskeepers, Shadow, and Jim, my housemate, who directed where to put the clippings.
I consider this a real coup . . .
Shadow and were out on one of our usual morning walks, this one into a big grassy area north of campus. Once again, no chemtrails above. A good omen.
Came upon these two men, both dear hearts, forking grass clippings into a white truck with the IU decal on the door. Would they mind taking this load of grass clippings to theGreen Acres Neighborhood Garden? It’s nearby.
“Well, I dunno. We’d have to ask the boss.”
After a bit more hemming and hawing, and me begging and scraping in front of them, Shadow dancing around their feet, one of them sauntered over to the truck cab and pulled out his walky-talky.
The boss: “Nearby? I see no problem with that.”
Shadow and I ran home to be on the street in front when they arrived. Got here just in the nick of time. Jim, the young permaculturist and Goddard student who lives with me, directed them to dump the pile just in front of flower gardens at my house, since he’s working on a project for a sweet little gate for the garden itself (next door),
Finally, we’re going to get an obvious gate into the garden. As it is now, people don’t even know the gate is there unless they are already familiar with it. Jim is working to create two little raised garden beds here, on the outside, before creating a more obviously welcoming gate. All these projects take time. As the founder and organizer — and elder — I sit back and watch young permies do their thing, utilizing the permaculture principles we all learned in the two-week-long permaculture design class.
and didn’t want that area disturbed. Told me he’d clean the whole mess up.
This is not the first time I’ve scavenged for materials for the GANG. Not the first time our morning walks have yielded riches. Most of these unexpected finds come from where neighbors pile what they don’t want for the city to take away. But not all.
A few years ago I spotted bamboo growing a few blocks away (for temporary garden structures; now we have our own bamboo patch to harvest). I went up to the door and asked the renters if they would ask the owner if we could cut part of it. YES!
Old carpet (for garden aisles,
then covered with woodchips (donated, when I ask, by the city of Bloomington, or by men cutting down nearby trees),
Here’s one of our aisles, carpet laid down and partially covered with wood chips (I’ve put a call into the city for more . . .). Notice the Garden Tower to the right (www.gardentowerproject.com). We’ve found that aisles treated this way discourage weeds for about three years in this climate, and then need to be replaced.
leaves from nearby neighbors each fall, a tree trunk downed by a windstorm and dragged from next door (for a hugelculture bed).
Image thanks to permaculture institute of Australia. A log can go in as the base of these type of beds, and then disintegrates slowly.
Cardboard too, once in a while. I see it piled flat on the curb, and, like the carpet, load it into the back of the Prius. All of this stuff, flotsam and jetsam of the suburban landscape, for the lasagna beds, to mulch them and keep building soil.
For now, Jim says he’d like to mix this load of grass in with our compost piles, some of which are mostly carbon (sticks) and in need of nitrogen.
So. We spent a wonderful afternoon on Sunday’s Earth Day weeding and mulching. Alexandra will write up a fuller post on it, but here’s a great shot of the workers working,
But today I want to talk about fruit. FRUIT. We got some! Not just grapes and berries (which came on strong the second year, not so great the third year, and this fourth year, are again strong — thanks to addition of rock dust),
but peaches, apples and pears!
I had noticed that these little trees, after four years, finally had some flowers on them this spring, but not until today did I actually notice that they now have fruit!
Plus, some little berry buds on some kind of bush, not sure what it is, but it was the very first thing we planted in the very first permaculture workshop that we held, back in 2009, and I had wondered if it would ever produce.
On the other hand, the seedlings are still gathering sun, awaiting transplanting.
I’ve had to cover them one night in the last week, since temps dropped into the mid-30s. But since then they’ve been okay. However, the way they are situated now, they only get sun after 1 p.m. About six hours total a day. Barely enough. And they are pale, need more nitrogen.
So it goes, as the magical GANG garden ramps up its activity, freeing the abundance of Nature year after year, fuller and fuller, as permaculture gardens are designed to be. Eventually, this place should look like a jungle, with stacked stuff to eat everywhere, and a natural magnetic draw for gathering neighbors into community. Blessings!
BTW: the fish are doing swimmingly, despite (because of?) the purgation of twelve days ago. About a dozen in there now, and I’m expecting little ones soon. Frogs are hopping and honking. All is well.