We have a beautiful amount of ivy at the church garden. Unfortunately, one of the four large ivy beds has been infested by a very aggressive honeysuckle plant which is native here. The weather has cooled down to a wonderfully tolerable level. It has rained off and on all week. The grass needs cutting, but it was too wet. The mosquitoes are flourishing in the back yard and our five volunteers were not deterred. We managed to clear about 20 feet of the fence line, to trim back an ivy bed and to begin the arduous process of removing the ivy bed that is infested with honeysuckle. The church voted to allow a mini herb and vegetable garden to provide fresh vegetables, herbs and fruit for the church. There is inevitably a hospitable display of food for fellowship time. We thought it would be conscientious of us to grow some of our own produce. Sept 17, we have a work day planned where we are hoping to build some raised beds and further ready the yard for the winter season. We will add some winter vegetables to the raised beds and begin our herbs indoors to plant outside next spring.
Yesterday was the first day that it was actually cool enough to get a good amount of the gardening done…. and as always, it feels like we only brushed the surface of what needs done. However, we were able to really cut back some invasive plants and re-establish some of the lines of the garden that were originally made so nicely. The lily in the picture grows wild here in West Virginia, and we have several of them in our garden. We have also discovered (finally) what the lovely plant that looks so grassy, but never blooms (because it desperately needs divided) is liriope. We are excited to have a part in creating sacred space!
It has been very hot and humid lately. It is hard to accomplish much with the heat and humidity, but we do what we can. We have enjoyed another garden party this past friday. We mowed the front and back lawns, burned the brush pile from the previous work week, and did a little more trimming of the opportunistic plants. The tree up front needs trimmed, but that may have to be done by people who are professionals.
This year is a year of clearing out the old brush, maintaining the garden structures, and preparing for the bounty of next year. We are working on putting together a request for seed grants and getting the community to give us their old milk cartons and 2 liter bottles which we will reuse as seedling planters.
We have some flowers and seedlings coming up to add a little color to the space. Of course, we are learning what works and what doesn’t work… so sometimes the learning process causes us to get things done more slowly than we would like. There is much work to still be done. We look forward to making the garden a place of serenity and community enjoyed by those who wish to spend a moment with us in the garden.
I will see if I can find a photo or two to add this evening.
We have hauled and/or burned 7 loads of brush. The back yard had opened up quite nicely, and we have seedlings that are starting to show out of the ground.
We have to replace the mower blade because we hit a brick. But thankfully the grass has not grown too quickly.
The two main organizers for the garden are on vacation 6/22-6/29, but intend on having a ‘work day’ on Friday the 1st of July. We will mow, weed some problem areas, and if we can get access to some hedge trimmers, we will even up the shape of some of the bushes in the front yard.
We do have a small problem with persons using the garden for inappropriate activities. In one of the overgrown bushes we found a tin of various pills that someone had stashed for ‘safe’ keeping. We will more than likely have to practice some proactive gardening where we have pointy and thorny plants along the perimeter.
Let’s hope that the rain will let up so that we can get some work done :)
This is the blog for the Garden of the UU Church of Huntington. Xanjilla and I take up the reins of revitalizing the old garden. As evidenced by pictures to come, you will see that it is a wonderful place that just needs a little more love.
We want the garden to be a communal and peaceful area overflowing with herbs, flowers, food, scents, and life. There is so much more to be done than two people can do. We have had several volunteers that have helped mow, cut and clear brush, weed, clean, and even donate and install a wire fence!
Fridays at noon are our meeting times when we perform the regular yard maintenance. In exchange for a little donated sweat you can find iced tea and snacks.
Donations of money can be made directly to the UU Church. Donations of plants, seeds, tools, mulch, garden containers, and other items can be done at the church as well. Be sure to ask for Linda or Xanjilla.