Tuesday, June 9, my new gardening friend Crystal and I paced off a square of ground out at Nickelsville, a homeless encampment planning to become a sustainable eco-village. The 20' by 36' space is going to be an organic garden, built lasagna-style from the ground up.
The first stage will be laying down cardboard and newspaper to smother the grass and weeds, start them decaying into compost, and attract whatever earthworms live in the vicinity. I left a bucket to begin collecting compostables, which will be spread between layers of peat moss, until a bed at least a foot thick is built up by the end of summer. Then we'll spread a final layer of finished compost and topsoil, and be ready to plant fall/winter crops.
Using cardboard, newspaper, and compostable garbage in building the garden will also help the Nickelsville garbage bill!
We need many donations to help build the garden:
- Peat moss
- Compost bin
- Worm bin
- Rain barrel(s)
- Seep hose(s)
The health department has told the Nickelodeons not to discard waste water in the bushes. Once we have some loam built up, however, we can have a gray-water rain barrel that feeds water into the soil (up to 720 gallons a week). Anyone experienced in using gray-water in home gardens is welcome to advise!