Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Where there's beer...

Beer is such a powerful attractor that even the mere possibility of even a draught in the distant future draws people.

I learned this earlier in the week as a couple of college guys ambled down the alley, stopped at the garden, and made no attempt to hide their interest in my hops. Even before they accosted me as I grazed on a row of spinach, I knew where this was going.

Their timing was impeccable. Just that afternoon I'd been fretting about how to harvest all of the various things that needed bringing in: tomatoes, basil, cukes, hops, pears, etc. Rain was coming and time was short.

In no time flat the two fellows had morphed into four and all five of us were sitting on my back deck around a three foot high heap of Willamette hop vines, shucking the perfectly ripe blossoms into grocery bags. And, bless their party-loving hearts, they were kind enough to bring along some very nice beer to help the work go...well, if not more quickly, at least more smoothly. My harvest worries soon faded entirely.

In about two hours we'd filled four grocery bags brimming with green hops. Once dried the harvest came to about two pounds in all. They took half and I've got the other. Mine are now vacuum sealed and awaiting a brewing adventure planned for mid-month.

Here's to the amazing phenomenon of the ad hoc community garden!

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Here's a mid-summer view of the new space, with the just-completed concrete bed. I'll post a more current one soon showing the truly spectacular Fall garden now fully up and producing.

The next step will be an enclosure for the right (east) end of the concrete bed to enable winter gardening.

For a first year space, this one has produced handsomely: we've been eating like people ought to for the past four months and have canned about 300 pounds of various things for later in the year. There's much more to go!