Gardening Season Heats Up

Well, we think it’s safe to say that warm weather is here to stay for gardening season. It’s wonderful to feel the sun shining as the gardens continue to heat up. With the sun’s spotlight on gardens, it seems an apt time to share some helpful gardening tips for bolstering a sense community, because after all, that’s a large part of what our gardens are about. Read below for more details, plus more gardening tips, things for kids to do, and more. Put on your sunscreen and we’ll see you in the gardens!

Volunteer of the Week

With gardening season comes volunteer season! Peterson Garden Project would not be what it is without all of our wonderful, devoted volunteers, so each week we will be highlighting a volunteer who has really gone above and beyond to lend their talents, time, and energy to helping us. Each “Volunteer of the Week” will receive a free pair of Wells Lamont gardening gloves from Matty K’s Hardware (4874 N. Lincoln Ave., Chicago, IL 60625).

This week we would like to recognize Anna Kong! Anna is a a year-round PGP supporter! She helped with our exhibit at the Chicago Flower and Garden Show in March and continues to help in lots of other ways too! Anna, stop in to Matty K’s for a pair of free gloves for being so awesome!

Two New Gardens Growing

The last few weeks have been busy building the garden at Swedish Covenant Hospital (Carmen and California) and Ashlandia (Hollywood and Ashland). These “small” Pop-up Victory Gardens (about 40 beds each) are new for 2013 and we’re excited about the communities that will form there. Special thanks to all the volunteers who made these gardens possible.

We Beat Our Goal!

A giant thank you to the 182 (!) people who made a pledge to Bees and Seeds, our Kickstarter for the new Seed Saving Garden going in at Global. You helped us raise almost $6,400! We’ve selected a spot for the project and will announce a work day soon for building and filling.

Water at LOL and Vedgewater

We’re on the schedule to have these installed/turned on, but we do not know when it will happen. We’ll update you soon as we know more (but thanks for all the emails asking anyway!)

Garden Updates

Land on Lincoln

  • We had a great work day last Sunday, weeding and numbering beds.
  • We’ll send out an e-mail with bed assignments this week, so you are able to put landscape cloth in your bed, and fill it with soil. You are now free to garden!
  • Note that while we hope water installation will happen soon, it hasn’t happened yet. As soon as we have details, we will let you know! Until then, if you plant, please bring your own water to the garden to water your plants.
  • There are some plots in what will become the central aisle; we can’t place them in their final destination until the water goes in. Please work around those until we complete water installation.

Upcoming Grewbie Classes

Our last Grewbie class (click here for more info) is on May 25 at Global. We’ll help you get settled into your garden plots and cover all the how-to’s.

What’s happening in the garden? Come find out at the first of our monthly classes taking place June 1 at Global Garden. These classes are designed to help new gardeners understand what to expect month-by-month in their gardens. Each session covers new ground and is advised for all new gardeners.

Gardening Tip

Community gardening is 10% gardening and 90% community

When you garden in a community garden, you not only make new friends, you’re likely to meet neighbors you’d never have encountered even when they live right down the block from you. And just like your neighbors down the block, you want be “neighborly.” Here’s some tips for keeping things friendly:

  • Keep the aisles clear. It’s tempting to expand your plot by adding pots, walls, and trellises that stick into the aisles. Structures and pots that block the aisles can be a safety hazard and will need to be removed. If you want to extend your space, think about sharing plantings — instead of you and your four “corner” neighbors each planting one thyme, one rosemary, one sage, and one oregano, have each of you plant just one of those. There will be plenty to harvest, and even dry, for everyone’s use. And you can use the extra space for other types of veggies.
  • Pull those weeds! Make sure you keep the aisles and edges neat in this way too. Pull or cut back weeds on the outsides of your plot. Never let a weed go to seed or it will be a bigger problem next year. Chop it off or pull it out!
  • Make sure kids are accounted for. Not only should you keep your kids close (so that they aren’t running on, or in, someone’s bed, or picking someone’s veggies), but be aware if there seems to be an unattended child. And keep the gate closed, so kids aren’t tempted to run into the street.
  • If you have a neighborly tip for a PGP garden, or any garden, make sure you post it on the Facebook page!

G2G Update

Ashlandia and Swedish Covenant Garden Need Grow2Give Volunteers!

Interested in helping Us grow food for pantries and nutrition programs? We need your help! Send an email to [email protected] if you are interested in helping with our pantry donations program at our newest two gardens! You don’t have to be gardening with us, and you don’t have to be an experienced gardener to help us try to grow one ton of food for pantries and nutrition programs in 2013.

Help Us Keep Our Classes Free

Did you attend a Grewbie 101 class at our “Grewbiepalooza” last weekend (16 classes in two days!)? We’re thrilled that funders like Dr. Scholl Foundation help us to offer these programs free of charge, but grants don’t cover the full cost. Won’t you consider making a tax-deductible donation today by clicking on right now to make a gift? Thank you!

It’s Time For Summer Camp Music Festival

This Thursday, our very own Lester and volunteer, Amy of the Green Earth Institute, will be camping out at this year’s Summer Camp Music Festival. At the fest PGP will be hosting a good ol’ Seed Swap, carrying out workshops/demos, and some of our fantastic shirts and hats will be up for purchase.

Throughout the weekend we’ll be collecting donations to raise money for things on our wishlist, like a PA system for our Summer Music & Master Gardeners Night!

To add to this PGP will be live on stage to have a 45 minute discussion/performance set with the Ragbirds at the Soulshine Tent on Sunday, May 26th at 2:30. Be sure to listen in to this radical band and how they infuse their love of the environment through their music.