Spring quarter brought more than new plant life to the farm – we also received some fresh faces! Andy, who had just returned from a quarter abroad in India working for an NGO, and Iree, an environmental studies major, were gracious enough to volunteer their free time at City Soil. Both seniors at Seattle U, they’ve gotten a crash-course in urban agriculture (at the farm and in Allison’s class on urban food systems being offered at SU), and proved essential to the operations of City Soil. From watering, weeding, and wandering, to starting seeds indoors, hauling compost, and applying bloodmeal (ew!) to amend our soil, they’ve gained invaluable skills that they can now bring to their work after graduation.
After about a year of working to get funding as well as our permit for recycled water through King County and Seattle University legal departments before we are finally installing. With our permit submitted to the WA Departmeny of Ecology we started to install pipes on April 15. A hired crew of 4 from Earth Corps helped us trench and lay out all the main pipelines over three days. Now, we wait for the meter to be installed so we can flush everything out and then hook up our control valves. We are so looking forward to not only having an automated system but reusing water that would otherwise be wasted.
Baby geese arrived at South Plant this week. They are learning to walk and swim! Check out the Facebook page if you want to see a cute video of them.
We had such a wonderful time last Thursday at our Fall Community Celebration. Having so many members of the Renton and Seattle University communities join us and enjoy our space with us was a truly beautiful experience.
We welcomed over fifty guests to our farm, giving tours of all of the different spaces, including our perennials, our orchard, our herb garden, and our annuals. It was fun, as the summer season comes to a close, to show off all we've done over the past growing season and to talk about our hopes for the future!
Our guests helped us imagine a strong vision for the future, through our collaborative vision board; putting together words, phrases, and pictures onto a single board, our guests helped us to see what others want to see, and helped give us new, creative ideas for how to incorporate more art and ingenuity into our different projects! We also had Janie Bube displaying her living wall project, just one of the many smaller projects that we have in the works!
We also very so extremely lucky to have the help of Janice Murphy from the Seattle University Grounds department doing a fascinating biochar demonstration -- a carbon sequestering process of producing charcoal from plant matter. We are so grateful for the continued support from SU Grounds and Janice!
Our potluck was also a huge success! It was so fun to enjoy the bounty that the farm has produced in the form of marinated grilled squash, lavender and rosemary scones, kale salad, and some soda with homemade syrups made with lavender and pineapple sage from our herb garden. Our guests also brought some very impressive dishes. We even made s'mores with homemade gluten-free graham crackers! We were thrilled to share food and drink with all of our past and future supporters.
The night came to a close as the sun went down, and we couldn't have been more energized about the future of our project. Let's grow together!