October 2020

Ocean View Farms October 2020 E-News


"Autumn mornings: sunshine and crisp air, birds and calmness, year's end and day's beginnings."

Terri Guillemets

instagram straw flower


Featured Instagram Photo of the Month: The Beautiful and Unique Straw Flower


Upcoming Garden Events:

Oct. 3 - Greenhouse Fundraiser - 9:30 AM - Noon 
Oct. 10 - Saturday Workday - 9:00 AM - Noon 
Oct. 25 - Sunday Workday - 1:00 PM - 4:00 PM


Useful info:

  • We have a stuffed newsletter this month so I'll keep my ramblings short.  First things first, happy fall everyone - the most confusing of seasons!  One day we're enjoying some crisp, fall mornings and the next the Santa Anas have moved in and we can experience triple-digit heat.  Even though the days can be hot, the sunlight is fast waning and everything is the garden has started to rapidly slow down. It does feel nice to be planning and planting again after the summer harvest.  Read below for information about the fall greenhouse fundraiser.  It's very exciting to see the greenhouse sales return to the garden.  If your buying plants, it's a good idea to amend your soil a bit before putting new plants in the ground. It also won't hurt to hold onto those little seedlings for a few days until the heatwave passes. Here is the usual list of things that you can do and plant during the month.
  • Reservations for the October 10th workday will open on Saturday, October 3. To reserve a space, visit the OVF website on or after October 3rd. Click on the pomegranate photo on the home page. This will link you to the reservation page. You will receive a confirmation after you sign up.


OVF Announcements: 

Greenhouse Fundraiser

The OVF Greenhouse starts its 9th season on Saturday, October 3rd, with its first sale in 7 months. Many cool season vegetables are available; with several different varieties of favorites such as broccoli, cabbage and cauliflower. Click here for a detailed list of sale plants.

There are some new sale procedures due to our unlovely pal, COVID-19. The sale begins at 9:30 a.m. Members will line up, 6 ft apart, on the north side of the meeting area. Ten people at a time are allowed in the sale area. We will have 3 cashiers: 2 for cash and 1 for PayPal transactions. Please bring small bills if you are using cash. Please exit on the south side towards the sink.

We are short of flats so please bring something to carry your purchases in. As always, please rinse and return containers to the wooden bin outside the greenhouse.

The greenhouse crew is grateful for your support


Help Needed

  1. Ed needs someone with a pickup truck to help him take some of our burgeoning pile of recyclables to the Recycle Center. Please put a note in his mailbox in the wheelbarrow shed or email him. Remember that during the COVID outbreak, we are trying to avoid the recycling center as much as possible. We ask that you refrain from bringing your recyclables to OVF at this time.
  2. OVF is always looking for dedicated volunteers to help with our composting program. The composting group meets every Saturday morning at 9:00 AM at the compost bins. Work calls generally last no more than 1 hour. Come and help OVF keep our piles going and meet new friends.
  3. OVF is looking for a tax preparer.  As of 2019, OVF is now required to file non-profit tax returns.  We are looking for a member willing to help us with filing either a 990 or 990-EZ.  Community service hours will be awarded. Please contact Carol Velkes.  


OVF Bans Wild Fennel

wild fennel in bloomIt’s not every day that the board decides to ban a new plant from the garden. However, on September 26th, gardener Les Hairrell made a case to the board so compelling that they unanimously decided to do just that.  Les has put together a summary of his case against wild fennel that we encourage everyone with an interest in gardening to read. It’s amazing how much trouble one not-so-little plant can cause. Remember that wild fennel is not the same plant as bulbing fennel (which can be purchased at the October 3rd greenhouse sale).

Here is the quick version.  Again, we encourage you to read the entire article for pictures and the science behind these facts.

  1. Wild fennel is an invasive weed that endangers California’s native habitats.
  2. Wild fennel spreads easily and become more difficult to remove over time.
  3. Bees and butterflies will eat the fennel plant but they would do better with the native species that it is currently outcompeting.
  4. Wild fennel does not play nice with most crops, secreting a chemical the inhibits their root growth
    Learn more about the problems with wild fennel here.

OVF's 13th Annual Tomato Tasting

Ed Chair Andy Morris shares this:

They say necessity is the mother of invention. Welp! 2020 has necessitated us to rethink a whole lot of things we were used to, including OVF's beloved Tomato Tasting. Typically a celebration of the summer season and all things tomato, we knew in-person tastings were out of the question, but remained determined to share the spirit.


tomato tasting


Gardeners submitted beautiful pictures of their tomatoes in all stages; on the vine, in the midst of preparation, and as part of the dishes that graced the tables and counters across OVF's community. Just like the live tasting, it was wonderful to see the variety of colors, shapes, sizes, and (new this year!) uses for these gems.


tomato tasting 2


And taking a page from the books of many distanced sports leagues, we even had gardeners enjoying the show from the stands! Thank you to all the gardeners who participated and otherwise facilitated this "event." A special thank you to the sponsor of this year's Tomato Tasting, Merrihew's Sunset Gardens, who supplied the prizes for participants, including bags of soil amendment and $100 in gift certificates. Merrihew's is right around the corner from OVF on Ocean Park in Santa Monica, and has been serving gardeners in the area for over 70 years.


tomato tasting 3

As always: we want to hear from you!  Send us an email, reach out on Facebook, or tag us on Instagram @oceanviewfarms.

That’s all for now.  Happy gardening!