Translate this Page

May 302014
 

Today was Work Day or Open Day at the Common Garden in the Służewiecki Dom Kultury. The “Wspólne Ogród” is still in its infancy and it hasn’t been easy to attract local residents to participate. Today, however, a great guy who has been helping a lot lately, Wojtek, stopped by with a new part for the hose. He helped move some dirt and some giant rocks. Hurray!

There has been a big pile of muł (pronounced “moo”), that is to say silt, just sitting in the path for weeks. It came up from the bottom of the beds. Up until just now this very moment, I thought it was “ił” (pronounced “ew” as in yuck or gross) because someone told me so and I never looked it up. I looked it up. Muł is SILT. Ił is LOAM. But  “muł” also means “mule” and ił is just muł with sand…. This is it:

sdk_0530_IMG_1213

After discussing with Wojtek what we could do with this pile of muł (throw it over the fence, spread it around a little here a little there) I suddenly got the idea to mix the silt (maybe about 60 liters) with the acid peat that was donated by Plantico. So that’s what we did: 180 liters of peat with 60 liters of silt. Starting to look like SILTY LOAM. Don’t ask me what THAT is in Polish. This is silt with peat (muł z torfem):

sdk_0530_torfandew_IMG_1222

I also made some beautiful balls:

sdk_0530_balls_IMG_1219

The garden is looking good. Each bed is its own universe of experimentation!

sdk_bednumbers_IMG_1225

1 – Veges and herbs (mostly brassicas)
2 – Veges and herbs (mostly tomatoes and peppers)
3 – Nothing yet. A dirt-holding bed
4 – Double dug, and then soil over a “Permaculture bed” (grass, straw, woodchips)
5 – Compost bed
6 – Double dug and planted with a couple of pumpkins so far
7 – Lupine and alfalfa (łubin, lucerne)8 – Lupine and alfalfa (łubin, lucerne) with 4 tomato plants planted into the green manure
9 – A woman planted some cilantro and radish here!
10 – Mustard and Lupin (Gorczyca, łubin) plus 2 fennel and some wild mint

 

 

Apr 062014
 

sdk_feet_IMG_0780

Today was the first big workday at the new SDK Community Garden. We started it with a quick lesson on Soil biology, texture, structure, acidity, and nutrition, then moved on to the big work of the day: fixing the poor-draining garden beds. One participant did it all in bare feet!!

First we removed all of the top soil — about 10 or 15 cm. The layer underneath is very heavy.
sdk_dig_IMG_0784

Next we dug a few holes with the amazing dirt driller:
sdk_drill_IMG_0787

The wholes were about 8 cm wide and 1 m deep.
sdk_drill_in_IMG_0785

These we filled with landscape fabric “socks” filled with gravel.
sdk_gravel_IMG_0789

The finished drains looks like a cute bow tie:
sdk_april6_gravel_bowtie_IMG_0792

Next we broke up the hard clay layer as much as we could and mixed it with wood chips. A nearby stadium donated a huge amount of horse poop and straw. They even delivered it right into the compost bins:

sdk_binofhorsepoop_IMG_0773

We added the straw-manure mixture:

sdk_manurethrowing_IMG_0794

We decided to leave this and let the organic matter break down a bit. We’d like to build raised beds here…

sdk_finishedbed_IMG_0793

This is what it looked like when all was done — a bit of a mess!! That’s a work-in-progress.
sdk_april6_theend_IMG_0800

Apr 042014
 

We gathered samples of the top soil and the substrate for texture tests.

First we remove all visible rocks and organic matter, spread the samples on newspaper, and let them dry for a couple of days. The next step is to pulverize the soil. You can put it into plastic bags and crush it with your hands or a rolling pin, for example. Remove any additional organic debris or rocks.

sdk_IMG_0748

Then we put the soil into a jar (500 liters or a quart) until it’s about 1/4 to 1/3 full, add water until the jar is about 3/4 full, and add 1 tsp of castille or dish soap, something that doesn’t make too many suds. Typically, the recommendation is to use dishwasher detergent, but that is very expensive here in Poland. Shake for 10 or 15 minutes and set somewhere where it won’t be disturbed.

sdk_soiltexture_jars_IMG_0751

 

Within a few minutes the sand settles to the bottom of the jar. Within a few hours the silt settles on top of the sand. Within a few days the clay settles on top. That’s the theory. In practice, the results are not always clear. For the Pixxe Garden’s soil, the results were quite clear. For the SDK garden, this is what we found:

GARDEN BEDS have a Sandy Loam:

sdk_soil_texture_bed_results_IMG_0756 sdk_texture_results_bed_triangle

SUBSTRATE has either Sandy Clay or Sandy Silt — only two layers were really discernible:

sdk_soil_texture_substrate_results_IMG_0756 sdk_texture_results_substrate_triangle

Sep 132013
 

Today we collected 20 kg of fruit for tomorrow’s JAM SESSION

  • 2 kg cornelian cherry (dereń)
  • 5 kg apples (jabłek)
  • 10 kg pears (gruszki)
  • 1 kg plums (śliwki)
  • 2 kg grapes (winogrona)
  • 1 kg aronia (aronia)
  • 2 kg elderberry (czarne bez)
  • 250 g blackberries (jeżyna), which were eaten on the spot

Click on the pics for a little story.

Oct 222012
 

Hoduj-Gotuj

I am offering an after school class at Primary School Nr. 10 in Warsaw that will install a garden on the school grounds and teach kids how to cook. We will build raised bed boxes and plant vegetables and herbs in March. Until then, we will be cooking up all sorts of delicious food. In English!

Oferuję dodatkowe zajęcia dla dzieci u podstawowej szkoły nr. 10 w Warszawie. Instalujemy ogród na terenie szkoły i nauczymy się dzieci, jak to gotować. W marcu zbudujemy szkrzynki (“raised beds”) i w nich sadzimy warzywa i zioła. Do tego czasu, będziemy gotowały dużo smaczne jedzenie! Po angielsku!

Oct 032012
 

We have more than 500 composting worms who need a home. This, in fact, is a very small amount of worms! Did you know that 1 kg of worms (that’s 1000!) can eat up to 0.5 kg a day in waste. That’s almost 4 kg per week. Come and and prototype worm bins with us on Saturday, October 6 from 13.00-17.00. We’ll be using wood pallets and plastic bins. If you can, bring a plastic bin at least 25 cm deep or a pallet!

Mamy ponad 500 dżdżownic kompostowych, które potrzebują domu. Przyjdź, zaprojektuj i zbuduj z nami protoyp pojemnika na dżdżownice z drewnianych palet i plastikowych pojemników.

HOME FOR A WORM

 

Sep 272012
 

Thanks to Wojtek and Aneta from foodconnect.pl for taking these great photos of APPLE TIME last Sunday Sept 23, 2012. We canned about 3/4 of the apples!

PEEL

PEEL

CHOP

CHOP

KIDS WERE GREAT!

KIDS WERE GREAT!

THE BUSY TABLE

THE BUSY TABLE

Sep 192012
 

We have kilos upon kilos of Antonówki (Atonovka) apples and we are going to preserve them this Sunday right at the Pixxe Garden. Come along and bring a jar so that you can take some home! 23.09.2012. 15.00-17.00. The garden is located on Racławicka between Grójecka and Sierpienskiego. Directions to the Garden here.

Mamy dużo jabłek Antonówki i będziemy je zkonserwowali w tę niedzielę na działce Pixxe. Przyjdź i przynieś słoik, żeby zabrać trochę z tobą do domu! 23.09.2012. 15.00-17.00. Na ul. Racławicka między Grójecką i Sierpieńskiego. Kierunki tutaj.

Apple Time at the Pixxe Garden

 

 

 

Aug 232012
 

2 Bikes. 2 Bike Carts. 5 Days. Nance Klehm, Jodie Baltazar and A BUNCH of other cool women, plus a few good men. 15,000 liters of waste. THIS was the SOIL GARDEN PROJECT! (And it’s not over! Every other Saturday we will continue…..) Photos by Nance Klehm, Jodie Baltazar, and Jen Knowlton.

EMPTY BINS AWAIT THE WASTE

EMPTY BINS AWAIT THE WASTE

BROWNS FOR COMPOSTING - STRAW, WOODCHIPS

BROWNS FOR COMPOSTING - STRAW, WOODCHIPS

FIRST WE TAKE THE BINS TO BANACHA MARKET

FIRST WE TAKE THE BINS TO BANACHA MARKET

IT'S NOT LONG BEFORE THE BINS ARE FULL

IT'S NOT LONG BEFORE THE BINS ARE FULL

WE LOAD UP THE CARTS WITH VEGETABLE SCRAPS AND CARDBOARD

WE LOAD UP THE CARTS WITH VEGETABLE SCRAPS AND CARDBOARD

WE RIDE TO THE GARDEN WITH THE PRECIOUS LOAD

WE RIDE TO THE GARDEN WITH THE PRECIOUS LOAD

WE CAN'T RESIST THE GARBAGE IN THE CARREFOUR BINS

WE CAN'T RESIST THE GARBAGE IN THE CARREFOUR BINS

THERE'S SO MUCH CABBAGE WE DECIDE TO CALL IT CABBAGE COMPOST

THERE'S SO MUCH CABBAGE WE DECIDE TO CALL IT CABBAGE COMPOST

WE TOP THE CABBAGE WITH STRAW, CARDBOARD, PAPER

WE TOP THE CABBAGE WITH STRAW, CARDBOARD, PAPER

IN THE AFTERNOONS NANCE LEADS WORKSHOPS ABOUT COMPOSTING

IN THE AFTERNOONS NANCE LEADS WORKSHOPS ABOUT COMPOSTING

THE FIRST THING IN THE NEW BIN: WOODCHIPS & CHUNKY YARD CLIPPINGS

THE FIRST THING IN THE NEW BIN: WOODCHIPS & CHUNKY YARD CLIPPINGS

HERE IS SOME WASTE FROM BANACHA THAT WILL GO IN THE BIN

HERE IS SOME WASTE FROM BANACHA THAT WILL GO IN THE BIN

BUT FIRST WE HAVE TO RIP THE WASTE

BUT FIRST WE HAVE TO RIP THE WASTE

AND WE HAVE TO CHOP THE WASTE

AND WE HAVE TO CHOP THE WASTE

SO MUCH TO CHOP. EVERYONE GETS A GO!

SO MUCH TO CHOP. EVERYONE GETS A GO!

SOME OF US PREPARE THE CARDBOARD

SOME OF US PREPARE THE CARDBOARD

THE TRANSLATOR DOES AN AWESOME JOB!! THANKS STAN!!

THE TRANSLATOR DOES AN AWESOME JOB!! THANKS STAN!!

NEXT WE ADD SOME HERBS LIKE VETCH....

NEXT WE ADD SOME HERBS LIKE VETCH....

...AND WHY NOT THROW IN SOME DANDELION???

...AND WHY NOT THROW IN SOME DANDELION???

NEXT WE MAKE SOME COMPOST TEA

NEXT WE MAKE SOME COMPOST TEA

ALL THAT WASTE AND THE BINS ARE STILL ONLY HALF FULL - WOW!

ALL THAT WASTE AND THE BINS ARE STILL ONLY HALF FULL - WOW!

Aug 112012
 
Banacha waste is pretty and good!

Banacha waste is pretty and good!

Today I did a test drive to see how it would work to take Banacha’s organic waste next week. At 7AM, I took a 120 liter (about 45 gallons) container to the amazing, beautiful woman who handles the garbage there. She told me she could fill it in an hour. She also told me that we could to the test today, but that the Security wants me to have permission from the market administration to continue next week. She gave me their number. I have to call on Monday. I’m scared. In my experience so far with Polish officials, “Permission” is another word for “No.” But she also said that they were nice people, so I can hope.

At 8AM, I returned and the container was full. We tried to put it in my bike cart. My bike fell over. Too heavy. So we put it into two huge garbage bags. That worked. The ride back was slow but smooth. The bearings in the wheels of the cart made a sound, however, that tells me they won’t be working long… I returned four times and collected about 800 liters or so.

With two bikes we could easily collect twice that much.

What’s great about fresh vegetable waste is that it is so beautiful and smells good! However, I can’t process it until tomorrow, when it might not be so pretty. Thank goodness the weather is cool…..

Aug 082012
 

Nance KlehmCykl Warsztatów: OD ODPADY DO ŹYZNOŚCI
prowadzenie Nance Klehm

ENGLISH BELOW

UWAGA: Nastąpiła zmiana w planie warsztatów. Sobota będzie “Otwarte warsztat.” Warsztat w niedzielę (Dlaczego i jak budować toalety kompostujące w mieście)  również zawierać temat “ekstremalny kompost na ekstremalne czasy.”

Pozwól zgnić, czyli jak kompostować odpady organiczne
Piątek, 17 sierpnia, godz.: 15.00-17.00. Sugerowana dotacja: 30 PLN.
Liście, resztki jedzenia, papier, tektura, gałęzie, fusy, biodegradowalne przedmioty itp. Te rzeczy mogą zostać zamienione w ziemię, ale jak to zrobić? Na tym warsztacie będziecie mogli zadawać wszystkie pytania dotyczące “brudu” i sami też będziecie mogli się pobrudzić w trakcie budowy stosu organicznych odpadów. Zarejestruj się w tym warsztacie

Otwarte Warsztat
Sobota, 18 sierpnia , godz.15.00-17.00. Sugerowana dotacja: 30 PLN.
W tym warsztaty, zdedycujemy co zrobimy na miejscu. Możliwe tematów: vermicomposting, przemyślenia przestrzeń publiczną. Zarejestruj się w tym warsztacie

Dlaczego i jak budować toalety kompostujące w mieście
Niedziela, 19 sierpnia, godz.15.00-17.00. Sugerowana dotacja: 30 PLN.
Rozpoznaj w swoim ciele twórcę gleby. Dowiedz się, jak zbudować i prowadzić prostą suchą toaletę dostosowaną do gęstego, miejskiego otoczenia. Po dyskusji pokażemy, jak za pomocą termofilnego kompostowania przekształcić twoje odpady (i inne odpady zakazanego n.p. mięso, tłuszcz, i produktów mlecznych) w życiodajną glebę.. Zarejestruj się w tym warsztacie

Rozpoznaj rośliny w swoim mieście
Poniedziałek, 20 sierpnia, godz.15.00-17.00. Sugerowana dotacja: 30 PLN.
Spacer odkrywający roślinność Warszawy, podczas którego będziemy mogli nauczyć się rozpoznawać rośliny, poznać ich botaniczne pochodzenie, historie wykorzystania ich przez ludzi i zwierzęta, a także podzielimy się przepisami na antidotum z wykorzystaniem niektórych z nich. Zarejestruj się w tym warsztacie

PARTNERS:
Ulica ekologicznaSocial Ecologies


 

 

 

**************** IN ENGLISH *****************

NOTICE: There has been a change in the workshop schedule. Saturday there will be an Open Workshop. The composting toilet and extreme composting workshops will be combined and take place on Sunday.

Workshop Series: FROM WASTE TO FERTILITY
Conducted by Nance Klehm

Let it Rot 101: Composting organic waste
Friday August 17, 15.00-17.00. Suggested donation: 30 PLN.
Leaves, food waste, paper, cardboard, branches, coffee grounds, biodegradable utensils, etc. These are all things that we know can become soil but how to do it? This workshop is the place to get dirty and ask those dirty questions as we discuss and build a mesophilic compost pile out of organic wastes from Warsaw’s waste stream. Register for this workshop

Open Workshop
Saturday August 18, 15.00-17.00. Suggested donation: 30 PLN.
We will decide on the theme and activity on the spot, depending on who is there and what we want to do! Possible themes: vermicomposting, rethinking public space, or another foraging expedition. Register for this workshop

Dry toileting in an urban setting: the whys and hows
Sunday August 19, 15.00-17.00. Suggested donation: 30 PLN.
Reconnect with your body as a soilmaker! Find out how to build and operate a simple dry toilet appropriate to a dense urban setting. We will also discuss and demonstrate how to safely compost your waste, as well as other extreme waste such as meat, fat, and dairy products, through thermophilic composting into nutritious, life-supporting soil. Register for this workshop

Urbanforage
Monday August 20 15.00-17.00. Suggested donation: 30 PLN.
This is a guided walk through
 the spontaneous and cultivated vegetation of Warsaw’s urbanscape. Along the walk, we learn to identify plants, hear their botanical histories, stories of their use by animals and humans, and share antidotes of specific experiences with these plants. Register for this workshop

Aug 012012
 
Pixxe Garden - Public Entrance

Pixxe Garden – Public Entrance

Pixxe has a new garden! It has been given the most original name: PIXXE GARDEN. It’s located in Rakowiec on the border of Szczęśliwice in Ochota, Warsaw, Poland.  GPS 52.198990, 20.967910, to be precise. We still have the Railroad Garden, but the main activities will now take place at the Pixxe Garden.

It will be open to the public for the upcoming SOIL GARDEN PROJECT, but there is an awful lot of work to do to make it ready for more ambitious activities. I’m hoping that with this new, more accessible, and less primitive garden (for example, it has water), we will be able to open up on a more regular basis by next spring. As such, Allotment Sunday / Niedziele na działce won’t be happening for awhile — it will be more like Codzienne na działce — everyday at the garden! So if you want to stop by, please let me know. Everyone is always welcome and there is always something to do.

Though the Pixxe Garden is not squatted, it also sort-of is. I thought I was beginning to understand how the allotment gardens work here, but now I have discovered a whole new in-between type of garden, called tymczasowy, or temporary. The Pixxe Garden is tymczasowy.

As I have written about before, there are “official” gardens (the Rodzinny Ogród Działkowy or ROD / Family Garden Allotments) and then there are “unofficial” gardens, like the Railroad Garden, which is basically a squat. ROD are gated communities. You must be a member and have a key to gain access. What is interested about temporary gardens like the Pixxe Garden is that sometimes they are located WITHIN an ROD, but are legally “unofficial”. This particular stretch of land abuts an “official” ROD and was taken by people in 1980. They have been temporary for 32 years! So the Pixxe Garden has one “Public” entrance, on Racławicka, and one “Private” entrance from within the ROD Zelmot. This dual status suits me well. I like being in between. And afterall, the city owns the land in any case!