welcome to the organic green doctor blog

i am a family physician who was diagnosed with
early mild cognitive impairment(mci) amnestic type on december 21, 2010
this is a precursor to alzheimers disease
because of this diagnosis i have opted to stop practicing medicine
this blog will be about my journey with this disease
please feel free to follow me along this path
i will continue blogging on organic gardening, green living,
solar power, rainwater collection, and healthy living
i will blog on these plus other things noted to be interesting

Thursday, September 26, 2019

santa barbara country n news-the black composter


one night i was sitting at a gettogether of the walk to end alzheimers committee here in santa barbara at a local pizza parlor
an advisor from the edward jones folks was sitting across from me
they are the national sponsor for the walk to end alzheimers

i had worked with her for several months on the committee
she got to talking with me about gardening and rainwater harvesting
she said
i have these rainwater tanks and this black composter at my house that you can have to use in your school garden
she later brought them to the garden

the life of the black composter in the school garden began two years ago

last year we harvested well over a thousand worms from the black composter along with several 5 gallon buckets of compost that the school kids or kindergardeners as i call them help to produce
many brought left over scraps from home and from their lunches and snacks and dumped them into the black composter
any plant material removed from the garden area was composted there also

all the fertilizer used in the garden here is from that black composter and the blue worm composter

the kids understand at the end of the year how to make compost and use it in the garden
the best thing is they get to eat the veggies they grow

if they plant it
they will eat it
so this week it was time to restart the black composter

all of the material left from last year was removed
the old compost and remaining worms were saved
i would say we started with about 10 worms
we added greens and browns
old clippings from the community garden flowers
old leaves saved from last years leaf fall
shreds and shreds of old newspapers
shovels of coffee grounds
the old compost
each kindergardener took a handful or trowel full or a sheet of newspaper and placed it in the composter
it was then watered in well by filling up a red coffee can with water and dumping it on the heap

there were 21 kindergardeners that i worked with 3 or 4 at a time
the materials were all mixed up well as we went

they will add food scraps from home and their lunches and any garden debris that we get
eg we are about to remove the old tomatoes and weeds and pumpkin vines
they will all go into the compost pile

at the end of the year the compost will be removed  and spread on the garden to rest it for the summer
we usually count the worms also at this time

last year we had each kindergardener count 10 worms
then put them in a tray
when we got 10 trays full
we put them in a 100 worm tray
when we got 10 trays full of 100
we put them in the 1000 tray

so they learned to count to 1000 that day

as we finished we spied some caterpillars on the millkweeds in our flower bed
each kindergardener searched for more
we found 9 more
hopefully one day we will see monarchs flutter around the garden
we have a tropical milkweed which they like but its not the one that works the best for monarchs
the best are the native milkweeds which we have several planted in our garden

the kindergardners
learned how to make compost
learned about the monarch caterpillars

its fun and learning day every thursday morning in our school garden

this week we will plant multiplying onions in our new garden pot
the onions are left over from last years class
we will also plant some cover crops in our new garden soil the kids made in our flower bed
to include our jack in the bean stalk bean and peas and vetch and oats
the beans stalk will be used to see if it will get taller than the tallest kindergardener
last year one kindergardener won
later this fall we will scatter native wildflowers in that bed also for a spring wildflower blooming

its all good in the school garden

the organicgreen doctor

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