It was great to have several new members interested in market growing and since they’re all in Dolan Springs, we might have a meeting in Dolan in a week or so. Please email if you’re interested in joining us, we’ll mostly talk about bulk purchases, greenhouses / hoophouses and market gardening.

We also had several new members who don’t garden at all and are not interested in gardening at their home, but consider helping others. We hope to match up gardeners with health problems with members who can help dig holes, put up fences, etc. in exchange for part of the harvest.

We watched the 36 minute documentary “Greening the Desert” about growing under conditions far worse than in our area:

Greening the Desert II: Greening the Middle East from Craig Mackintosh on Vimeo.

We need to find more nitrogen fixing trees and shrubs that won’t freeze and will do well in our harsh climate.  Palo Verde trees are nitrogen fixers, we just planted several and we hope they survive their first winter.

The prizes:

For grand prizes we had a 3′ Palo Verde tree, bamboo and a gift basket with gloves and pruners.  The door prizes were very cool too, locally grown strawberries, books, pots, labels, …

We also received $22 in DONATIONS and seeds from LOCALLY grown bell peppers and yet to be identified local shrubs, thank you!  I can’t wait to try the the bell peppers because we didn’t get a single bell pepper yet!   We had planted several varieties and are very disappointed.  Our Hungarian peppers finally set fruit and we have a few Anaheim chili peppers growing, but the peppers definitely were our worst crop this year.

I think the best part of the meetings is that members have so much to talk about. It’s all about sharing information and experiences and finding solutions to problems.   I’m going to set up a separate gardening blog here so we can post resources and it’ll make it a lot easier to get organized.

The next meeting is on Monday, 10/17/11 at 1 PM, as always at the LMC Music Hall.