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, April 7, 2022

garden news-using what we have


this is the layout from google maps of our community garden
the beds lined up north and south and the beds just above those running east and west are the approximately 30 ft beds that we raise veggies to donate
there are 19 beds in this picture we use for growing our donated veggies
we do have several raised beds in the front entry outside our fenced garden that we raise veggies
we have a teepee there that we grow usually a vining pea or vining bean
right now we have scarlet runner beans that can grow 20 feet growing on the teepee
the kids love to go inside the teepee to play

there are plots some are shown on the left running obliquely
these plots surround the perimeter all the way around the garden
these plots are individual gardeners plots 
there are about 20+ of these
my two plots are on the lower right corner of the garden not seen in this photo

my primary volunteer job is that i plan what gets planted in the beds and when the seeds get planted
we grow our veggies plants in a nice greenhouse
when the plants are ready then i schedule the plantings in the garden
i also prep all the beds usually myself to get them ready for planting
i usually do all the drip lines myself unless a volunteer is around that wants to learn how to do them then i let them do it with my supervision

all our veggies we grow we start from seed in the greenhouse

i also usually do any pest management if the need arises
luckily in santa barbara we dont have much of a pest problem
our major one is aphids
we use sprays of water to management the aphids
if needed we will use neem oil

so i usually do all the bed prep and plantings and pest management unless a volunteer who wants to help or learn how to do these things is available

this bed here needs some extra tlc
for some reason the cabbage we planted here did not do well
we had these 5 bags of gromulch donated to us so i decided to use them
we usually use our home made compost but we are out since we have prepped several beds recently
i broke the bags and made piles up and down the bed
i then raked it in so that it is evenly distributed along the bed

in the middle of the picture are the ingredients of the bag
it smells like the forest floor
it has in it
recycled forest products
arbor fines which are finely ground tree trimmings
composted dairy manure
composted poultry manure
dehydrated poultry manure
hydrolyzed feather meal

if i was a pepper or a tomato i would want to grow in this stuff

all of this is then forked in with a broad fork 
then raked out smoothly

our basic soil in the garden is a clay which we try to add a lot of compost and woody products when we do the beds
this improves the soil
however the extra carbon in this material will suck up a lot of nitrogen from the soil until it breaks down
we also try to use liquid fertilizer twice a month which provides extra nitrogen 
if its early in the morning before the sun heats up we use it as a folar feeding
otherwise we apply to directly on the soil surface 

this is what a bed looks like when finished
we add three rows of drip tape with water holes every 6 inches

in this bed in the picture we planted squash which in just two weeks covered the bed
in the newly prepped bed we will be planting jalapeno peppers probably next week
lucky jalapenos 

we cant make enough compost to use in our beds so we rely on these donated bags of materials to supplement 
this gromulch is a nice substitution
thanks to the santa barbara home improvement center for the donations

for the spring summer we have already planted around
120 tomatoes
30 bell peppers
30 squashes
120 bean vines
40 egg plants

still growing from the winter garden are leeks onions garlic kale swiss chard celery lettuce 
soon we will plant 30 jalapenos 30 poblanos 30 more squashes trumpet squash tatume squash malabar spinach

soon all our beds will be full again
producing hundreds of pounds of produce for those in need

all worth the effort

one of the few good things from the pandemic is that it made me spend more volunteer hours in the garden 
which made it easy to get through the last two years

i plan to continue this garden volunteering as long as i can 
its one of my happy places

the organicgreen doctor

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