We have been busy with winter work this week, cutting back, pruning, thinning and transplanting. February is the ideal month to wrap up the to-do list and prepare for spring.
Intern Pete from Archie Williams High School wowed us by double-digging the entire Edible Garden by himself—and then he went to baseball practice! We are continuously amazed by our high school helpers.
Double-digging is a time-honored practice that helps rejuvenate the soil for a new growing season. By digging down two shovel-lengths into the bed, air, light, and water can penetrate the soil and the
mycorrhizae (fungi that have a symbiotic relationship with the roots of many plants) break up; we leave the turned soil for a week or more, then we’ll add compost and worm castings. In raised beds like the ones we have in the Edible garden, this process keeps the soil from getting compacted and readies it for new planting.
I almost stepped on these tiny mushrooms on a misty day. They are Black Rubber Cups, found only in the Pacific Northwest.
The rose pruning instructional on Wednesday morning was most excellent, if chilly. We covered the basics and removed the mystery of how to prune roses. So many good questions from our audience, we look forward to doing more demonstrations in the future.
Stopping to talk to our visitors is always a pleasure for me. My love of plants, people and place all come together at the Center, lucky me.