You can grow lots of vegetables and still save water!
Mulching – shredded wood, branches, leaves, non-invasive grasses, compost or other green-waste used in a thick layer around the root ball of your plants. Cover soil surface 2-6 inches of mulch around the base of your plant stem. Cover all exposed soil if possible. Mulch will regulate temperatures, hold in moisture and eventually break down providing nutrients. Keep mulch away from your plant stem to prevent disease or insects eating your plant. Fungus growing in your mulch is a good sign! This means you have healthy soil mycorrhiza, the fungus that allows plants to access nutrients and communicate.
Intercropping & Companion Planting – These practices have been used by Indigenous cultures around the world for centuries. Western agriculture has a lot to learn from Indigenous practices if we plan to sustain our food sources through climate change. The Three Sisters Method used throughout the Americas features corn, beans and squash planted in companion. Leaves of the squash shade the roots of the corn preventing over watering, beans use the corn as a trellis for support and fix nitrogen for both the corn and squash roots. Flowers like poppies, marigolds, lavender or clover make great companion plants for pest control, shade, pollination and nitrogen fixation.
Soil Grading & Drip Tubes – Watering early in morning or after sunset will greatly reduce water evaporation. Around each plant you can create a well or moat to capture water, observe the slope of your garden and use swales or trenches to capture excess water running off. This will recharge the ground water helping the long term health of your trees. Water running out to the ocean through sewers over many years has broken the natural water cycle, making it difficult for native plants to survive climate change conditions.
For more resources on Indigenous agriculture practices please visit: FirstNations.org
“Grow With Us!”
Summer Fundraising Campaign
Thank you to all of our generous donors so far! Together we have raised over $3,000 for our Farm to School Guidebook!
Farm to School
Griffith STEAM Middle School & Ford Elementary
EUG Staff collaborated with LAEP teaching horticulture and after school programs for Middle and Elementary Schools May-June. We plan to continue programming the fall with the help of our community partners. Students learned to propagate seeds, plant trees, harvest and irrigate plants. Students also tasted seasonal produce, learned about carbon footprints and nutrition!
Arts in Action Community Middle School
EUG participated in a mock farmers market where students received bags of organic produce, information about local food and garden themed toys and jewelry. EUG staff handed out herbal tea and wildflower seeds for students.
Arroyo High School Farm Lab
Summer is full of fruits and berries! We have several different varieties of grape at the AHS Farm Lab and they each produce fruit at different points in the summer. Grapes and raspberries are deciduous plants, meaning they go dormant during the winter and thrive in spring and summer. Adult Transition Center Students are learning this summer at the AHS Farm Lab until mid July!
Rosemead High School Best of Thymes Garden
Our water saving practices were recently featured on abc7 Community & Events! A vegetated bio-swale created by RHS students and community volunteers captures rain water to recharge deep ground water.
Click the above post to read the Article!
Mountain View High School Orchard
Summer is when our orchard is producing the most! Staff on campus, surrounding community and EUG staff all help harvest the fruit, and of course the birds and squirrels get some! You can find recently harvested fruit at Cyber Yogurt 3305 Tyler Ave, El Monte, CA 91731
La Madera Community Garden
Harvest is also abundant at the community garden! Passion fruit vine is producing a lot the time a year along with strawberries, apples, corn, peppers, watermelon, squash and herbs! Members sprout their seedlings in the plant nursery and transplant them into garden plots around 2-3″ tall.