Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Next SPUDS planting...

SPUDS members and others who were unable to attend our inaugral planting last Saturday, are encouraged to join in this coming Saturday, May 26th! The remainder of our available seed potato will go in the ground between 1pm and 3pm, so please bring a shovel if you have one, gloves and hat if you need 'em, and some water. Planters work together in a team.

If you are unable to pitch in, please get in touch and we'll let you know when an opportunity to pitch in on another project is forthcoming. Please see past posts below, for details about membership and involvement in SPUDS for you and/or your family!

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Potatoes are IN the ground!

On Saturday, April 26th, SPUDS members and friends raised the fencing around the field, held a brief commemorative ceremony with yummy refreshments and entertainment provided by the Raging Grannies, and got planting! Our designated potato guru , organic farmer Bob Parsons, did us the honor of cutting the ribbon and leading us in the planting technique of the day.

Members who were unable to participate are invited to gather next weekend for a second planting session to get the rest of our potato seed in the ground. Check back here for time and date, which will be determined based on what works best for those yet to pitch in!

Thanks to Andrew Fyson for the wonderful photos below:

The Raging Grannies look on, as appreciations are made to the Hermitage for the potato co-op site, to Freedonia for our start-up grant, to Linnaea Farm on Cortes for long-standing inspiration, and to everyone else who has supported SPUDS along the way! Co-founding SPUDS member Peter Janes, standing in the gateway fashioned out of cedar rails from his farm, led a hard-working crew in fencing the area. Approximately one third of the prepared field will grow potatoes, on a three year rotation basis. The remainder of the field will eventually be cover cropped.

Other SPUDS co-founding members Brian , Corinne, Veronica and Fireweed (Peter missing from photo, as well as Herb Jones who was away)

Denman vegetable farmer (and organic mentor to many) Bob Parsons does us the honor of cutting the ribbon...

...and announces the SPUDS potato patch officially open for planting!

DESSERT FIRST! Organic apple cider, courtesy of East Cider Orchard, and organic chocolate cake help celebrate the occassion.

The Raging Grannies entertain SPUDS supporters with the 'potato song'...scroll up to the links column over on the right hand side of the page to enjoy the 'original' version!

Friday, April 18, 2008

Celebrating SPUDS!

The field has been ploughed, the potatoes are sprouting, and all eyes are on Saturday, April 26th!

Members of Denman's newly formed SPUDS collective, and anyone else keen to support this exciting local food sustainability initiative, are invited to attend our inaugral seed planting and celebration beginning at 1:00 pm.on the grounds of the Hermitage on Denman Road. We'll have a brief welcome, ribbon cutting at the field, and cake and refreshments to share just before we get started planting! Even if you're not a SPUDS member, come on out and share in the community spirit. Rumour has it that the Raging Grannies may even be on hand to add to the festivity of the occassion.

Earlier in the day, volunteers are needed to help with fencing, so please contact Peter Janes at 0970 if you can lend a hand with that. The plan is to get underway at 9:00 am, and with a few more volunteers the fence might be up just in time for our opening ceremony!

SPUD membership involves participating in the planting, hilling/weeding, and harvesting of our potato patch. If you've already signed up and haven't yet submitted your membership fee, you can do so on Saturday at the Hermitage. The membership fee for individuals is $15, and $25 for families. Work trade may also be available, just ask.

As guests at the Hermitage, all Potato Co-op members are obliged to sign a waiver of liability. If you are not a member, but would still like to come out and pitch in on Saturday, thankyou for excercising extra caution on the site. Any children must be attended to by adults at all times, and stay within the potato patch area. There is a small pond by the barn, so please note that area as entirely off limits. Thankyou!

On Earth Day, Denman Island school children planted their own potato patch in another supervised, fenced-in area at the Hermitage, and donated a few plants to the Community SPUDS project. Then they celebrated with a baked potato lunch and entertainment from the Raging Grannies. If you like the idea of so many Denman Islanders 'growing together', see you on Saturday, April 26th! Please bring a shovel, garden gloves, rubber boots, and water bottle. Call 1209 for further info.

Above: Denman school kids enjoy a baked potatoe lunch after planting potatoes in their own plot at the Hermitage for Earth Day. The Raging Grannies entertained (above)!

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Membership General Meeting, April 17th

Everyone who has expressed interest in, or who has already signed up to be a member of SPUDS, is invited to attend our first general meeting, scheduled for this Thursday, April 17th at 7:30 pm in the Library of the DI Community School.

As you may recall, we're modeling our co-op after the successful program at Linnaea Farm on Cortes. This first year will take a little more organizing time than future years, just to get the infastructure in place. Everyone is welcome to contribute what they can...we'll decide at the meeting when we're going to plant, how much to plant, etc. Help will be required to get our fencing in place, so if you're available for that, you can volunteer at the meeting. We're also looking for hay mulch, so if you have any to spare or can provide a lead, that information will be most welcome.

After planting, a minimal number of communal workbees will take place throughout the growing season members are encouraged to attend when they can. One person per member household is expected to participate at Linnaea, although whole families come on out for the fun, socializing and quick work that gathering in a group achieves!

We'll keep the meeting to an hour. See you there! Please call for details if you can't make it.