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Rose RootZone: News from the Rhizosphere"

February 2021 Monthly Newsletter

Good Morning Organic Gardeners, It's that time of year again when our garden head and hands get a bit itchy. We start to read articles on how to improve from last year, what veggies we may want to eat throughout the season and we start thinking about reuniting with all our garden friends!

Planning your Garden Each year is a fresh start or new beginning. When thinking about what your garden will look like this season we do have some things to consider. Some of the highlights are...

  • Lighting - planting north to south gives your plants the most sun. Crops need 6 hours of full sun. Greens and lettuce tolerate partial shade. Root crops such as carrots & beets can have just morning sun.

  • Soil - Evaluate your existing soil to determine what it needs. Organic amendments such as compost, manure, and worm castings will improve drainage, soil consistency, and provide nutrients.

  • Water - Water seedlings lightly and frequently to get their roots established. When plants get bigger, water less often and for longer to establish deeper roots. Too much water can result in root rot and fungal diseases. Not enough water can cause stunted growth and poor yields. Plants will need more water during heat or dry spells. The City manages our water. It turns on when ground freeze lessens, approximately in May.

  • Nutrients - Avoid chemical fertilizers and pest or disease controls so that food doesn’t become contaminated. Rose Roots is an all ORGANIC garden.

  • Plot - try growing up if your space is limited using a trellis, cages, etc. Just be aware of the shade it may create for your neighbor.

  • What to Grow? - Decide what you'd like to eat. Keep it simple so you don't become overwhelmed. Draw up your plan. Do your homework by familiarizing yourself with the plants and consider companion planting. Remember to put in some flowers to help pollinate your garden and the joy factor.

  • Seasonality and Veggies - cool, warm and successive planting.

    • Cool - lettuce, radishes, peas, broccoli, and root vegetables such as beets, potatoes, and carrots in mid-spring. Some can be replanted in late summer for fall harvest. Cool season vegetables do best in temperatures of 40-75 degrees F. Wait until all danger of frost is past before planting outside.

    • Warm - tomatoes, peppers, corn, beans, eggplant, and cucumbers once the weather warms in late spring. Warm-season varieties need average temperatures between 60-95 degrees F. To get a head start these can be started at home and brought to the garden.

  • Successive - Double crops can be planted. Cease planting cool weather crops during the hottest part of the summer and resume when the weather starts to cool off again. Remember our water turns off in October generally.

  • Garden Care - keep your plots free of weeds with mulch, non-seeding straw, compost. Pests and diseases happen, know your plants' weaknesses. Enjoy the harvest and remember the growing periods for more productive crops. Learn from each year. It is a journey!

February's Monthly Garden Meeting - 13 gardeners virtually attended with two Guests this month. We had two visitors, Shelley Cook from the Veggie Van and Marissa Silverberg from Jefferson County Food Systems and Policy, to help us make decisions on where to donate our extra food for the coming season. Many good suggestions came from the meeting to review. That information will be shared when we have a clear path. Also, thank you to new gardeners that joined in to participate. We look forward to meeting you at the garden in person!

Month in Review

  • The website has ongoing updates on Covid-19, diversity, minutes/agendas, etc. Please take a look if you have questions or want to contribute with a blog post or recipes please email and your question will be passed on to the correct leader.

  • Treasurer - we got our 2020 water bill for $350 which was low considering a full garden. Great job gardeners!

  • Membership - we have nearly sold out the garden again this year! Of the 88 plots in the garden we have, 3 Food Bank plots, 5 gardeners are undecided if they are returning, 10 half plots all occupied, and 10 ADA raised plots all returning. We are prepping for our annual registration which will be online again in March. An email will go out as soon as we receive the link from DUG. Now would be the time to decide if you are turning for those who have not yet. There are 12 people on our waitlist to get a plot.

  • Spring Compost Order - Patty is doing the research to find the best decision for our spring load of compost and potentially horse manure. More to come when we have a decision.

  • Service Jobs at the Garden - If you would like to get more involved, we have a long list of tasks listed on the website. Please take a look and start thinking about how you would like to give back and get to know your community. Note that many of them seem like a one-person job, but if we share the load it makes it so much more fun!

  • Unfinished business - We did not get to talk about the Bylaw updates and West Side open space landscape improvement. There is always next month!

The backside work that gets done in the offseason can truly be so exciting, chatting with new and returning gardeners and brainstorming for new ideas to make this season even better. It is looking like yet another full garden again this season, which is fantastic! We so look forward to digging in the dirt with all of you!

Upcoming Dates:

Garden Monthly Meeting

Monday, March 1, 6pm

Google Meet Virtual Meeting - Link remains the same each month until we can meet in person:

Agendas and Minutes are always Here.

All gardeners, please join us virtually. We will be chatting about various topics that affect the upcoming season. Get informed, involved and use your voice for a good cause. Everyone is welcome!

Garden Online Registration

Coming in Early March. Watch for an email to all gardeners for the link to purchase your plots. More information to come very soon!

Please see the website for a full calendar for upcoming events!

There are two seasonal diversions that can ease the bite of any winter. One is the February thaw The other is the seed catalogs

~ Hal Borland For the love of gardening, Kendra and Garden Leadership

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