Tuesday, December 4, 2007

End-of-the-year garden deadline approaching

With less than a month left before the end of the year, I wanted to remind everyone that gardeners who aren't planning on actively gardening during the winter need to prepare their plots for the season by December 31.

I stopped by the garden over the weekend to do some work on my plot -- mostly weeding and preparing it for a partial sheet mulching. Over the past month, a number of people have sheet mulched their plots, which will help improve the quality of the soil while keeping weeds in check. Others have cleared their plots and planted winter crops. But I noticed that there are about a dozen plots that are covered in weeds at the moment.

A couple of years ago, we amended the garden agreement to require all gardeners who aren't planning on gardening during the rainy months to prepare their plot for the winter by sheet mulching or growing a cover crop. Before we made this change, the vast majority of plots were neglected during the winter and overgrown with weeds.

This was shortly after the garden was saved from development and it just seemed like a shame that the garden went unused for many months out of the year after so much time and energy went into saving it. Since that time, many people have been sheet mulching during the winter, which has greatly improved the soil in the garden. And others have taken advantage of our ability to garden year-round in San Francisco and have experimented with different winter crops.

One of the other reasons we've gotten more strict about enforcing this rule is that the waiting list for getting a plot at the garden has grown tremendously in recent years. We currently have twenty people who are waiting to get a plot at our garden.

It's hard to believe it's December already, but winter is just around the corner. Please make arrangments to prepare your plot for the winter by December 31 if you aren't planning on actively gardening in the coming months. Gardeners who don't make arrangements by the end of the year will have to give up their plots to someone on the waiting list.

Please let me know if you have any questions. Thank you!