The Garden at 485 Elm
People growing together:
a collaborative community garden in Montpelier, Vermont

Sun + Rain = Food

A tree farmer described how trees grow as “Sleep, creep, leap.” The garden does the same, with much faster cycles than trees. After a sleepy start, days of sun and rain have kicked things into high gear. All our seedlings are planted. Only a few direct-seed crops remain, and we’re getting ready to replant a bed where they’ll go.

Lettuce seeds are tiny. Gardeners plant them as neatly as possible, but the little greens always need thinning. That means gently combing between plants and pulling up entire tiny heads to allow the ones around them to grow, leaving gardeners with salads worth of delicious baby greens grown from West Coast Seeds.

Same with kale, spinach, and mustard greens. Gardeners are pulling up entire plants, snipping off the roots to add to the garden waste windrow, and bringing home delicious greens to eat. The rows growing arugula, kale, mustard greens, and spinach will be harvested clean within a week or so in preparation for planting winter squash seeds in those beds.

It’s warm enough, with no further threat of nighttime frost, that hot-weather seedlings can go into the ground. These gardeners planted French tarragon, Thai basil, tomatillos, and sweet Italian basil seedlings from Cate Farm. We usually grow husk cherries (aka ground cherries) in small boxes along the fence; this time they’ll grow in the big tomatillo box. Gardeners also planted seedlings for cherry tomatoes, chili peppers, and eggplant.