Hello again from ASPI and Rockcastle Co.
The gardens are growing well with very few problems to date. A few potato beetles showing up for some folks, but we are getting that in hand. We have yet to see any sign of the late blight on tomatoes that folks are talking about. Maybe we are in time to control the worst of it!
Site visits are continuing. What a range of garden sizes, styles and growing methods there are out there! The one constant is the enthusiasm of the gardeners. All are so very appreciative of the Grow Appalachia project and John Paul’s generosity.
We held a ‘special meeting’ last week. This was called between regular workshops to give folks a chance to just talk together about concerns, plans and share garden stories. The meeting was well attended by 16-18 people. Armilda brought some late tomato plants to share with the group and has offered to start plants for late summer/fall gardens. She has been a blessing!
Next Tuesday we will have a workshop on mushroom growing. Local mushroom expert, Timi Reedy, will help us inoculate logs. All participants will take home at least one log of golden oyster and one log of shiitake to grow on for themselves. The necessary logs were donated by friends of the project. Poplar logs from the property of participant JR Kimsey, with the labor and hauling of participant Talt Hall. The oak logs were cut and hauled by Al DeChambeau, a strong supporter and volunteer for the project, from his property. We are all hoping for good weather for the evening!
Saxon Brown has been busy keeping the ASPI Community Garden site looking good. She had an opportunity to go along with Nancy on site visits as well to get to meet some of the home gardeners and see what they are doing.
Busy time of year!