Orange You Happy

>> Monday, June 30, 2008

This picture is of some wild flowers (weeds probably) growing in our second garden plot. They’re too cheery to rip out and are harmless enough where they’re growing so we left them. Today, I saw amongst the small orange flowers these poppy-like ones. I know pretty much zippo about flowers but they sure are pretty to look at, including those innocuous ones.

And to continue with the orange theme, may I present our lunch in the garden:

Mmmm…papayas. We also feasted on organic bananas and Valencia oranges. Oh and lots o’water!

Hey, did I just say “garden?” Why yes! This is going to be a garden update. Orange you glad?! I just had to say that….this is where the orange theme ends.

This past weekend we worked a lot in the garden, I even took Friday off from work to go garden. Couldn’t help it – summer’s officially underway and the sun was shining so brightly – it was great to be out. And anyone who thinks Seattle doesn’t get sun or heat, think again! Saturday and Sunday were both over 90 degrees; for around here that’s really hot. For me, LOVED IT!

I was starting to get a little too much sun so we stopped at Target to pick me up a hat and sunglasses. I'd show you a picture of me wearing said summer gear but they all look like barf.

Saturday at the garden was the annual potluck and elections. Our first one. Hubby had submitted his name for board member but being a garden newbie we weren’t sure how the elections would go (I had a good feeling initially since he’s pals with a lot of gardeners). From what we’ve learned from the other gardeners who’ve been there a few years or more, the turnout was the largest (it was still small when you think there’s actually 100 registered gardeners but only about 25 or so were present). Even the number of nominations to the board was an improvement from the past. There are two officers and five board members and they said usually they have to scramble to get a full board. I suppose with all the new gardeners there’s more interest to be more involved. I should point out no one was exactly jumping at the bit to be president so last year’s prez offered with no opposition. Yay! Our garden neighbor volunteered for VP so double yay!

The elections were for five board positions. Three or four of the original five from last year submitted their names for consideration and three or four newcomers submitted theirs, including
Yardsnacker. All or most of the newcomers are first year gardeners.

Time to vote!

After the vote, I just knew hubby was a shoe-in. I could tell based on the people around me (does it count I could see some of their cards? hee hee! Plus I knew those standing near us who know and are supportive of hubby already would’ve voted for him). Then it became official: hubby is a community garden board member! Woo hoo! Along with one other newbie, two returning incumbents and one other person who’s newly elected but no idea if she’s a first year gardener or not.

Congrats Yardsnacker! You’ll do a great job!

Now, you’re thinking cool, it all ends here huh? Well, not so fast! After the elections, Jack, the Hopelink Food Bank Coordinator, got up to talk about the food bank garden. At the community garden, organic produce is grown and harvested each season for donation to this great charity to help many needy families and individuals. Jack manages the eight plots strictly designated for the food bank. That’s a lot of work! As participating gardeners, we’re encouraged to spend time helping at the garden with planting, watering, weeding, harvesting, and etc.

Here’s a
quick article about the project from last year. The article mentions that the goal at the time was to donate a total of 5,000 pounds of produce to the food bank. In reality, they donated over 6,500 pounds. How great is that?! With our poor spring this year I wonder what we’ll be able to achieve – keep your fingers crossed that it’ll be abundant.

Okay, now back to Jack…he talked about how he’s been the coordinator of the food bank garden for the last five years and it’s becoming increasingly difficult, physically, to manage it daily because of his age (he’s 74) and recent back surgery (this guy’s a trooper though, he’s out there every day working and then trying to tend to his own garden in two other plots). So with that in mind, he asked for a volunteer to learn the ropes by his side this year and next so that the year after that he could fully retire. Again, nobody seemed eager to take on this responsibility but I just knew what was about to happen: hubby volunteered. That made me so proud! He’ll be an awesome coordinator no doubt. Everyone cheered and clapped (and probably sighed in relief) for hubby.

Thankfully, there are plenty of people who are willing to help out, including our friend Bessie. Of course, we will continue to strongly encourage others to donate their time as well. Or the slugs’ll get ya! Mwah ha ah ah ah!

So here we are first year gardeners one minute to hubby becoming a board member and assistant food bank coordinator the next. Yeowza! That’ll certainly keep him out of trouble for a while.

This will definitely be time-consuming and hard work but I believe the reward will be great. It’s impossible to not feel good when helping others. And before you think of me being super lazy and lame for not volunteering for anything I will certainly do my part to help out wherever and whenever I can….Just as soon as I get my suntan!

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