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Gardening Presentation for KFirst Permaculture Class


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This is a brief overview of the story of a family who went from limited gardening experience to founding a CSA over the course of 2 years. The presentation was given for a Permaculture class at Kalamazoo First Assembly of God Church in Portage, MI.

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Gardening Presentation for KFirst Permaculture Class

  1. 1. GARDENING K First Permaculture Class ~ March 14, 2012
  2. 2. Overview Our Story  Successful Beginners, Not Experts Our Methods Top 5 Excuses for Not Gardening Resources
  3. 3. Our Story 2010: Concerns about health & hard times  How can we thrive in a no/low-energy world? Books and online resources Square Foot Gardening Learned about seed types Brainstorming  Fencing  Garden Structures  Soil components
  4. 4. Our Story Homesteading Research Micro-farming and CSAs Birth of Arcadia Farms
  5. 5. Types of Seeds Open Pollinated A seed which produces offspring just like the parent plants. Open-pollinated seed allows growers to harvest and save seed for the following year.
  6. 6. Types of Seeds Hybrid or GMO A plant resulting from the cross mating of distinctly different parental types. Many seed companies are highly motivated by profit and so they intentionally release unstable hybrids whose exact parentage are guarded trade secrets. If a gardener saves the seeds, their resulting crops will not be true-to-type.
  7. 7. Types of Seeds
  8. 8. Types of Seeds Heirloom  Heirloom varieties are open-pollinated varieties with a long history of being cultivated and saved within a family or group. They have evolved by natural or human selection over time.
  9. 9. Our Methods: The Basics Bought non-hybrid and heirloom seeds Jiffy greenhouses in laundry room Parent’s greenhouse Transplanted in June
  10. 10. Our Methods: Square Foot Gardening Square Foot Gardening is the practice of planning small but intensively planted gardens in raised beds.
  11. 11. Our Methods: Raised Beds Benefits:  Easier on the back  No tilling the ground  Eliminates need for a lot of gardening know-how because you don’t have to amend the soil  Intensive production
  12. 12. Our Methods: Soil Mix Mel’s Mix  1/3 Peat Moss  1/3 Vermiculite  1/3 Compost “The Secret”
  13. 13. Our Methods: Intensive Planting No waste space Ideal for those with limited space More efficient production Shades out weeds (“living mulch”) Bio-diversity mimics God’s planting in nature
  14. 14. Our Methods: Pest Control 6’ Deer Fence  Chicken wire ($1/linear foot)  Landscape posts ($2 on sale)  Post holders ($3 after rebate) Marigolds Fishing line Deer won’t jump a double fence
  15. 15. Our Methods: Fertilizer  Jobes Organics Fertilizer  Unneeded  Compost
  16. 16. Top 5 ExcusesFor Not GardeningExcuse 1: I don’t have time.  Average of 30 minutes per day  You could do less!  Factors  How close is the garden to the house?  How often will you be watering?  How much weeding will you need to do?  How much fertilizing will you need to do?  How badly do you want to save money and eat healthier?
  17. 17. Top 5 ExcusesFor Not GardeningExcuse 2: I hate weeding.  Intensive planting shades out weeds  Watch out for compost!  Address the aisles  Mulch  Landscape fabric  We spent around 3 hours for the year
  18. 18. Top 5 ExcusesFor Not GardeningExcuse 3: I don’t have space.  Intensive planting  Do you have a 4’ x 4’ sunny space?  Container gardens  Look online for inspiration  We grew over 500 tomatoes in 8 square feet
  19. 19. Top 5 ExcusesFor Not GardeningExcuse 4: I don’t know how.  Neither do we!   Abundant resources  Establish a community of gardeners  Everyone starts somewhere
  20. 20. Top 5 ExcusesFor Not GardeningExcuse 5: It didn’t work last time.  “The godly may trip seven times, but they will get up again. But one disaster is enough to overthrow the wicked. Proverbs 24:16  Im convinced that one of the "secrets" to success is facing the fact that failure is a part of the process. Lots of people sit around and dream about accomplishing big things but never move because theyre afraid of failing (and the stigma that comes with it). Great people see failure as an inevitable opportunity to improve/re-imagine/try again, instead of a paralyzing setback.
  21. 21. ResourcesAll New Square Foot Gardeningby Mel BartholomewThe Vegetable Gardener’s Bibleby Edward C. SmithCarrots Love Tomatoesby Louise Riotte Mother Earth News iVilliage Garden Web Forums Google Arcadia Farms