Our first weekend at the garden this year was a lot less work than last year. Last year we built garden beds, put in irrigation, and shoveled mountains of dirt and wood-chips. This year we were able to reap the benefits of great planning and bed preparation last fall. The beds were covered in hay with wheat, rye, radish and pea greens from the winter cover crops poking through. Our first job was to remove the hay, so we could turn the soil and dig in all of the sprouts to add nitrates to the soil.
The children went into discovery mode as the turning up of soil unearthed a bounty of worms, earwigs, centipedes, and millipedes. The children got their hands dirty as they dug trenches, distributed the Bokashi Cake and volcanic ash into the soil, and then refilled the trenches with soil. Apart from the garden unearthing, two children were able to discover a new friendship through the mutual joy of sharing worms.
Once the soil was prepared, the children covered the beds in a new layer of hay, to protect the soil from the forecast snow. We were able to find and dig up sun-chokes around our fence line. Neither of the families had cooked with these before, so after a few pointers, everyone took home enough to add to dinner.