Totally Transformed

 

 

You wouldn’t recognize the place.

The photo on the left is what the interior of the Gardener’s Shed looked like early in the season. It was raw, dirty with gaps to the outdoors. Windows didn’t function. Pigeons called it home.

Rich Torkelson transformed the rundown, bare bones building into a beautiful shed.   There is electricity now, outlets, two beautiful doors.  One of which was made to match an antique door on one of the old Pitney barns. The attention to detail is outstanding. The craftsmanship is spectacular.

Come Spring, this little building will be ready for gardeners to use and will have counter space and storage for garden tools.

Thank you to all who had a hand in turning this worn and weary garage into the lovely space it is now.  There was a lot of scraping, caulking, cleaning, painting, scrubbing, glazing, window fixing, repairs and more that went into this. And, it shows. Our shed is beautiful.

 

 

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Volunteers Still Giving Their Time…Thank You

Look at the interior of our gardener’s shed.  Nice, isn’t it?

Thank you to Rich Torkelson and his friend Chris, Jim Gold and Paul Arnold.

It’s almost done and we are very grateful.Screen Shot 2017-11-03 at 7.01.02 PMAnd thank you to Peter Goutos who donated concrete edging that we will use around the flower beds near the pergola.  The edging is simple and elegant in design and will be a beautiful detail to our sitting area.

And we appreciate the helpers who came out this morning to move the concrete edging from Peter’s truck to the gardens.  Thank you to Chris C., Jim G., Bill, Buster, George, Jesse, and Margie.  A great team.

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Cleared, Cleaned and Prepared for Winter

winterready.jpgOur gardens are tucked in and ready for winter.

In the last two weeks, the plots have been harvested and cleared of plant debris. Organic compost has been added to improve the soil and the plots have been planted with a cover crop of annual rye.

The rain has helped and the rye is sprouting. This cover crop will improve our soil structure and provide erosion control during the windy months to come.  On the west side, the sunflower stalks were left standing to block the wind and provide a soil erosion control.

Even bare, the garden looks nice, tidy. Thank you to the Navy volunteers, our community gardeners and all the others who have come to help.

This season has been wonderful.

And, yes to those who have asked. I’m already thinking of next year and how our community gardens will continue to grow.

 

 

From Caterpillars to Chrysalises

They grow up so fast!

Our three little caterpillars became chrysalises yesterday.

Jess C. reported that they started to spin silk and in a short amount of time attached themselves to the net sides of the butterfly habitat where they will remain until Spring.

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If you look closely you can see the silk the caterpillars use to attach themselves.

They are in safe, competent hands and are another thing to look forward to next season.

Just as our gardens are tucked in for winter, so now are our butterflies.

Thanks, Jess and Charlotte, our butterfly caretakers.

Our Caterpillars This Winter

Screen Shot 2017-10-25 at 7.13.39 AMWe are so lucky.

Charlotte found caterpillars on the parsley plants and brought them to her home for safe keeping while we figured out how best to help them survive the winter.

Then, the power of Facebook came into play and through another friend, Kylee Baumle, a butterfly book author and expert, advised us that the caterpillars would survive the winter outside (even here in the Northeast) in the chrysalis stage.

Here’s what she wrote: “If she found them on parsley, they are most probably caterpillars of the Eastern Black Swallowtail. These will likely stay in the chrysalis stage all winter. I’d just leave them outside in an area where they can pupate safely. (In other words, not get stepped on!) They don’t migrate and will be fine all winter in their chrysalis stage.”

I like leaving nature in nature’s good hands. Thank you, Kylee. If you haven’t read her book: The Monarch: Saving Our Most-Loved Butterfly,  here’s a link to Amazon.