Goodbye Training, Time To get DIRTY!

As our training in Nashville came to an end, our crew headed back to Georgia eager and ready to begin the program! The first thing we have to report from the field to you is Clayton and Michaels first Conservation project that they have already begun! Today these two gentleman headed out to Gwinnett Environmental Health Center where they attended “The Real Food Fair” from 1-5pm. Here they learned about how to take commercial gardening to a home level. This fair focused on growing local food, that was all-organic with absolutely no herbicides used! We were all very excited to say the least. We already have had a compost bucket going in our house to give us a kickstart. It takes about 90 days for our composted food to be usable in a garden, so we are hoping that when the new crew comes mid-may- it will be all set for them to use! Today, Michael and Clayton returned from the fair very excited to get going on their project. The first thing they did was build a rain catch, since this house we are staying in does not have gutters. They figured this would be a good way to catch natural water and reuse it for the garden. A lot of people think going green is all about recycling, but we are here to tell you this is not true! Reduce, reuse, and recycle!!! This is the way to go, and these two guys are roaring and ready to practice this “green” method here in our own home! Their plan for our home garden is to have two different types of grow. Since our acreage has a lot of shaded areas, and minimal sunny spots, they opted to do a half shaded garden, and a half mobile garden. The shaded garden will be immobile and they will be growing vegetables that do not need sun such as, red potatoes, red and white onions, red cardinal spinach, and yugoslavian lettuce. Then, in containers that can be moved with the sunlight they will grow vegetables such as tomatoes and peppers. Michael and Clayton opted for this method because they do not want to kill the vegetation that is already on our property- even if it isn’t creating the optimal garden areas- they are willing and ready to work with it! When these vegetables are grown and ready to eat, they have big plans! The first thing they want to do is donate a good bit of what they grow to a local food bank. Then, they plan on trying to trade our neighbors for other vegetables. The neighbors to the left of us are a lovely elderly couple- whose wife claims her husband knows NOTHING about gardening. (Don’t you just love those couples that have clearly been together for YEARS. So cute.) They already told us they could use their help with their garden, and we plan on doing vegetable trades with them. We also have been looking around at farms that raise chickens to see if we can trade some vegetables for eggs. The rest of the vegetables we plan on eating ourselves! That is all for now, and we will talk to you in two weeks with another exciting update as we enter our first week of visitor use surveys!! - Leah, Clayton and Michael