Things are looking great in the garden. We had a period of cooler weather with rain almost daily for a couple weeks and that really helped a lot of the plants get going. The plants are all thriving. Even the flea beetle-attacked eggplants are coming back to life. The number of insect pests seems to have subsided, though I think some larger critters are starting to find the garden, so I'm in the process of inspecting the fence.
David Wu, a rising sophomore, started last week as the Summer Sustainability Intern through the Goodwin-Neering Center. He will be helping me a few days a week in the garden. Last week We emptied both Earth Tubs and brought the compost over to the garden to cure. The compost is looking much better than the first two batches. We are definitely getting better at making compost, which is great news. Compost is ESSENTIAL to sustainable agriculture...Speaking of which, I've also been spreading the horse manure that we received around the garden to fertilize plants.
Weeding is constant in the garden. Since much of this area is virgin soil, there are years and years of weed seeds that have built up here, so I'm constantly cleaning things out. But as our plants have grown in size and volume it has become less of a problem because they can now outcompete (for light) the small weeds.
I have also been delivering kale to Dining Services. It is our first ready vegetable this year, and soon we should have others as well. I have noticed a few cherry tomatoes that have popped up and will soon ripen, and many others are on their way.
Outside of our garden I have been working on many things. I'm working with CC Curtiss, to create an educational campaign for the Fall around food and nutrition. I've also been working with Professor Sue Warren of the Biology Department on a Freshman Seminar that she is teaching entitled "Healthy Choice."
I'm also working on ways to bring more local, organic, fair trade, and healthy foods to the campus. I've been meeting with community members, farmers, and Dining Services to work on this. I will keep you updated on any progress.
I went and worked at the FRESH New London Garden at the Waterford Country School this Sunday. They have a beautiful campus and farm that I recommend you all to check out. FRESH is growing quite a lot and gets help from community volunteers. They can always use more help though, so if you're in the area or perhaps when you return to school, ask me and I can put you in contact with them. You can also check out their website here.
That's all for now. Happy Independence Day!