October 12th, 2012
The season has come to an end for the Seed to Table Garden. We just harvested the rest of our acorn and delicata squash for Dana Dining Hall. Hopefully some of it will be used for the Thanksgiving Theme Dinner this year!
We have been very successful and we couldn’t have done it without the support of many people. All of the students who have volunteered have been a tremendous help. We also could not have made the garden so successful without the help of many community members. We hope next season can be as prosperous!
September 24th, 2012
It has been a while since our last post! We have been busy gathering new volunteers and harvesting in the garden. We have continued to give food to Dana Dining Hall and Campus Kitchens. Tomatoes, squash, peppers, swiss chard, cabbage, and beans are mainly what we are harvesting. The past two weekends I have helped Campus Kitchens make tomato sauce and freeze it for their winter meals! It is exciting to see all of the food from the garden being used on campus.
Our garden volunteers have been so enthusiastic and helpful. We have been able to go to the garden at least twice a week. Each person goes home with either veggies or sunflowers! New volunteers are always welcome. Contact me if you are interested. There will probably only be a few more visits out to the garden since the weather is getting colder.
Enjoy the Fall weather,
August 18th, 2012
Last week, Cindy trekked out into the Adirondack mountains for the Adirondack Semester. It is sad to see her go, but she will have an amazing learning experience!
Plants continue to grow and so does the work that needs to be done. I have been able to give Campus Kitchens and Dana Dining Hall a great variety of veggies including onions, tomatoes, zucchini, cabbage, carrots, green beans, potatoes, swiss chard, lettuce, and kale. Recently, I planted more cabbage, lettuce, beets, radishes, and carrots in the open garden beds. Hopefully the garden will be able to produce more beautiful vegetables in the fall for Campus Kitchens and Dana Dining Hall!
As the Fall semester begins, we will have volunteer times on Saturdays to help with harvesting. Contact me if you are interested!
August 8th, 2012
Recently, Cindy and I took a break from the garden for an opportunity to further our knowledge of local foods. We attended the 6th National Farm to Cafeteria Conference in Burlington, Vermont. The focus of the conference was on how to bring more local foods to preK, schools, and institutions. We learned about many projects in the area and across the country about how people are connecting farm fresh foods to their cafeterias. One woman from Keene prepares all local food, year round, to the Keene Elementary School in New York! Not just elementary schools, but colleges across the country are working to bring more local food to their campuses. Virginia Tech has a dining option of all local food in their dining hall. They have a farm affiliated with the campus that students work on to provide the local food! Along with our learning we were able to have delicious local food meals. The highlight of the conference was the Local Foods Reception at Shelburne Farms with Ben and Jerry’s ice cream for dessert. After dinner, we saw the bright orange moon rising over the mountains of Vermont as the sky turned dark.
Cindy was also able to attend a Permaculture Course in Johnson, Vermont.
Dana Dining Hall has been closed, but we have been able to continue harvesting for Campus Kitchens. Campus Kitchens has so much zucchini that they may do zucchini boats for dinner next Monday! We continue to help Josh and Louise with their CSA as well.
We will be looking for more people to volunteer in the garden during Fall semester, so keep your schedules open!
Sophie and Cindy
July 18th, 2012
Boy, have Cindy and I been busy in this hot weather! There is always something new to do in the garden. We have been harvesting veggies for Dana and Campus Kitchens weekly. We have more zucchini than we know what to do with….I think Campus Kitchens will be freezing a lot of it for winter meals.
We have been weeding, watering, and trellising tomatoes in the garden. We think a groundhog has moved into the garden, but we haven’t seen much harm to our crops. The only sign of him is the large hole in our potato bed. Soon we will be planting for Fall harvesting!
Recently, we helped Brian Bennett with haying at his farm. It was a very hot and sunny day. Not thinking about the job ahead of us, we wore shorts. We had fun all day, but left with many scratches on our arms and legs! We continue to help Josh and Louise with their CSA as well.
Hope you are enjoying the sunshine and summertime as much as we are!
Cindy and Sophie
June 24th, 2012
This past week was HOT in Canton! The weather did not stop us from delivering our first harvest to Campus Kitchens last Monday. We provided them with enough lettuce to make their salads and give some away. Much of the rest of the week was spent weeding and watering the garden. Everything is growing so fast!
We were able to harvest again this morning and gave kale, spinach, lettuce, and radishes to both Dana Dining Hall and Campus Kitchens!
Cindy and Sophie
June 15th, 2012
There is no better feeling than pulling the season’s first radish out of the soil, chopping it up, and hearing the satisfying crunch as you eat it in a salad just a few hours later. The dry spell has finally broken up here in Canton, NY and the garden seems to have taken off over night! We have been eating salads filled with Seed to Table grown lettuce, spinach, kale, and, of course, radishes. Unfortunately, but not unexpectedly, the weeds have been growing too. As we have just about finished planting beds in the remaining garden space, our future time will be divided between the chores of weeding, watering, and harvesting.
Although we have been getting more rain here recently, the weather has been wacky; some days blistering hot and others cold enough for a sweater. The farmers around here say it has not been typical June weather or, for that matter, typical spring weather at all. Some say that the growing season is at least two weeks ahead of where we were this time last year (the effects of global climate change perhaps?) When Sophie and I headed home this past weekend, the days were on the cool side and we decided to protect our pepper plants with row cover. Alas the temperature climbed into the nineties while we were gone and literally baked the plants. Thankfully, nearby Nobel Farm donated enough peppers to replace our loss.
We have been finding that our connections with the local community have been invaluable as we tackle this garden – from receiving tomato trellising advice from Josh (a local CSA farmer who we help out every Tuesday) to receiving free chicken manure from Brian of Bittersweet Farm. It feels good then when we help out with the Campus Kitchens Project on Mondays, giving back by serving a free meal to community members. And it seems like we will be able to give our first donation of garden veggies to the Project this coming week!
Looking forward to more harvesting, eating, and sharing,
Cindy and Sophie
May 30th, 2012
This is our first of many updates to follow from the garden this summer. We would have liked to have posted sooner but things have been incredibly busy here! So far we have made new garden beds in all of the garden space currently tilled, spread woodchips along all of the pathways, and planted the first succession of all of the veggies going to Dana Dining Hall. The weather in Canton, NY has been hot – especially for May – and, although weather.com would have you believe otherwise, there has been practically no rain. This means lots of hand watering in the garden, which isn’t so bad now that we have a hose set up and need no longer haul buckets of water down from the collection barrel! The plants don’t seem to mind the heat as much as we do, because things are growing! All of the seeds we sowed last week are poking up out of the soil and the transplants we set out have taken off.
Today we planted out 27 tomato plants and we still have at least that many in the greenhouse. The locals love to give us their extra tomato starts! So far we have visited the Bennett’s of Bittersweet Farm, as well as Louise and Josh’s CSA garden. In exchange for help planting, they have donated extra vegetable plant starts for our garden and extra garden fresh vegetables for our tummies! We also picked up a load of horse manure from the Bennett’s horse stall to use as fertilizer in the garden beds.
We are looking forward to continuing to visit with local farmers, learn what we can from them, and connect with the area community. For next week we hope to make more beds in the currently untilled section of the garden so that we can plant even more. We are also going to be planting some herbs in four garden boxes outside of Dana, to give to the cooks there and donate to Campus Kitchens. As of right now the garden is looking great and on track for an excellent harvest this summer. Pictures coming soon – just need to locate that cord that lets you upload them onto the computer.
Sophie and I are stoked for the rest of the summer and seeing this garden thrive!
Cindy and Sophie
May 10th, 2012
This Friday at 1 PM at the Ecological Sustainability Landscape, I will be presenting my SYE paper, which is focused partially on the Seed to Table Garden. There will be a short talk and then we will be working in the garden for about half an hour. All are welcome to come!
May 10th, 2012
The starts in the greenhouses are growing well (there was a short period where we were afraid we had lost them all, but they proved their resiliency and snapped right back). We have tomatoes (cherry and slicing), green bell peppers, kale, spinach and lettuce all started. Jackie started tomatoes and peppers for us as well, so we should have two waves of production this summer, depending on what the weather gives us this year. Tomorrow is the last day of exams, and then it’s summer! Some of us will be here during the next week or two, getting the garden ready for planting, organizing tools, etc. Then our interns, Sophie and Cindy, will be taking over for the next few months. Keep checking in for regular updates!