January 2018 E-Newsletter
"Bare branches of each tree
on this chilly January morn
look so cold so forlorn.
Gray skies dip ever so low
left from yesterday's dusting of snow.
Yet in the heart of each tree
waiting for each who wait to see
new life as warm sun and breeze will blow,
like magic, unlock springs sap to flow,
buds, new leaves, then blooms will grow."
- Nelda Hartmann, January Morn
Featured Instagram Photo of the Month: Most Popular Images of 2017
Upcoming Garden Events:
Jan. 6 - Fruit Tree Pruning Workshop - 9:00 AM - 11:00 AM
Jan. 10 - Board Meeting - 6:30 PM (Moved from Jan. 20)
Jan. 13 - Saturday Workday - 9:00 AM – Noon
Jan. 28 - Sunday Workday - 1:00 PM - 4:00 PM
- Happy New Year! Is your New Year’s resolution to spiff up your garden plot? Now’s the time to start! The dry weather and shorter days means that the weeds are slowing down. Take this opportunity to wipe them out before the spring reenergizes them. Here are some general tips for gardening in January (sadly, you can ignore the tips about wet soil this year).
Tree Pruning Workshop
Tomorrow, January 6th from 9:00-11:00am join Orchard Director, Gale Jones and Greenhouse Director, Nina Rumely for a Fruit Tree Pruning Workshop.
Bring your hand pruners or loopers if you have them and would like to use them. Participants will be standing / walking for a while so wear comfortable attire. OVF gardeners completing this workshop will be able to earn community hours helping maintain our OVF trees.
Renewal notices will be sent out via email, next Wednesday, January 10th. Those that are still getting their OVF renewals via USPS will receive theirs a few days later. This year's renewal fees must be postmarked by February 2, 2018. Online payments will be accepted until February 7, 2018.
For those that are still getting their renewal notices via mail, there is still time to enroll in OVF E-Renewal!. OVF E-Renewal saves the garden time, money and resources. You may: Sign-up For E-Renewal through your OVF My Account.
If you decide to receive your OVF renewal notice via email, but would prefer to submit your renewal fees by check through the U.S. Postal Service, that will still be possible. All OVF renewal fees MUST be submitted through online billpay or sent via US Mail. Renewal fees may NOT be hand delivered or left in the wheelbarrow shed mailboxes!
Save a Monarch! Please Prune Your Tropical Milkweed Plants
Any gardeners growing the tropical milkweed (Orange/Red/Yellow), please cut your plants down to 1 inch above ground level to encourage the monarchs to migrate. If the milkweed is not cut, it develops Ophryocystis elektroscirrha, or OE. This unpronounceable protozoan disease infects monarchs and other milkweed feeders, often resulting in butterfly crippling or death. This disease is particularly prevalent in warm winter areas like Southern California and Texas.
The positions open for election at the April General Meeting this year will be:
· Recording Secretary
· Education Chair
· The four lower Phase Representative positions
· Phase I Middle Phase Representative
Once again Frank will hold two Pine Tree Chats this year for anyone interested in learning more about serving the garden in any of these positions. Look for the dates in the next E-News!
If you have a leaky hose or other plumbing leak, please use the plumbing forms found in the wheelbarrow shed to report the issue. Please try to describe the problem and the location of the problem as accurately as possible. DO NOT email the garden president or garden master about the problem!
If you are digging in the pathway or near the edge of your plot and you accidently break one of the water pipes, immediately attempt to turn off the water to that row! Each row has a valve at one end that will turn off the water to the entire row in an emergency.
Row values are located:
· On the south side of the path between phases two and three, one valve for each phase
· Along the edge of the gate 2 path in phase one
· Along the path closest to the driveway in phase four
Here’s a typical row valve in the open position (with the cover removed). Wear gloves if you cannot remove the cover completely, as creepy, crawly things sometimes make a home inside the plastic covers!
Turn the red handle 90 degrees, so that it is perpendicular to the pipe, to turn off the water to that row.
Letter from Garden Master Ed Mosman
On December 12th, the shredding crew was feeding the machine weed material when Alfredo, the pile builder, signaled to me to stop the machine. An 18 inch piece of steel rebar was caught in the cutting chamber and the cutting hammers were trying to chop it up.
Fortunately the rebar had tried to escape and a portion of it was sticking out of the grate. A cutting hammer got bent but we can fix that. We were lucky the rebar didn’t get jammed horizontally or get ejected out thru the grate at the speed of a bullet! The loaders then showed me 2 more pieces of pipe they picked out of the weed material before it got onto the table.
For the safety of our garden members and machinery, members that clean off their plots must remove ALL non-compostable items, and take them to the dumpster.
On a good note, we are finding very little nutgrass and false garlic in the weeds, and the crew thanks the members for helping with that.
Our composting system is 1st class and it is the result of hard work by fellow members. Thank you all for helping make it even better!
New gardeners are always welcome on the shredding and composting crews. The shredding workgroup meets every Tuesday at 7 AM and usually works for about an hour, followed by coffee and treats under the large pine tree. The compost workgroup meets every Saturday at 9 AM to begin the process of turning the shredded material into compost. We’d love to have you join us for either of these activities.
Anyone who would like to know more about the history of the Garden's composting program can check out this article written by Karl Lisovsky for the OVF site.
That’s all for now. Happy gardening!