Tuesday, July 21, 2009

U of ID Extension "Children's Learning Garden"

While in ID, Achoo took us to the Children's Learning Garden. The Ag Extension offices are located just a hop, skip, and jump away from my parent's place, so what better garden to get ideas from for them, but this one! It was designed by the U of I Master Gardeners. It's hard to read on my handout i picked up, but i believe the entire area is 24' x 40'.

For construction of the beds, they used a variety of materials they found on site.

side views of the entire garden

Here is a bed constructed out of cinder block (64sq ft)

It consists of onions, chili peppers, and maybe some green beans there around the poles.
I love how they planted the holes in the cinder blocks too...trying to think if something edible could be planted in those holes.

Here's another bed (88 sq. ft.) constructed of timber.

Lots of cauliflower and broccoli.

This is another timber construction bed (96 sq ft)
constructed to be able to use row covers when frosts come (if they come early.)

All tomatoes! Now that's what i'm talking about!!

This is a 80 sq ft bed made of wattle (the straw filled tubes used in controlling sediment flows in runoff on construction sites.) At the garden they call this the "Keyhole garden", which would explain it's unusual shape.

this just contains lettuces and herbs

as you can see just behind is a little rock fountian and a bird bath.

This is a 84 sq ft area of the garden left for planting corn.
They used the 3 Sisters method (a Native American tradition) that uses corn as the trellising mechanism for beans, which in turn provide fixed nitrogen for the corn. Squash is also planted for a living mulching system. The combo didn't seem to be working too well, however maybe in longer, warmer climates it would.

This is their pumpkin patch at 16 sq ft.

I love their composting bin, and can't wait to get one of my own like it someday!
I dont' know what the solar panel is for though.

Now i am not saying this garden is the end all be all...i can't believe they don't have any berries or fruits in the garden!! Granted, the berries would attract the bears, but is a garden complete without fruit? And on that note, i can't imagine how the deer haven't devoured this garden yet! Heck, or the moose even--this is near the area we captured that video of the meandering moose.

The best part about this garden though are not only it's experiments, but ...

it's all being grown and donated for the local food banks!

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Thanks for taking the time to read my silly lil musings. Hope you have a wonderful day!