Cerena writes to help new gardeners get started,
remind experienced gardeners to plant at the best times, inspire us to try new techniques!  Being outdoors gardening is healthy
for our bodies and spirits, provides the most nutritious organic veggies right on your table with no food miles at all! 

Green Bean Connection
Happy Father's Day, Summer Solstice & Fairy Day!

JUNE Summer Garden Treats!
Common SoCal Summer Garden Pests - Aphids, Cucumber Beetles, Leafminers, Whiteflies
Tower or on the Ground Gardening?!
A Food Not Lawn Garden in Santa Barbara CA 
Events!  Home & Garden Expo, Summer Solstice Celebration! Fairview Farm - Summer Farm Camp!

Dear Pilgrim Terrace Gardeners, Garden Friends,

Welcome to our new neighbors, both humans and plants, at Gray Avenue Tower Farm! They are now installed next to us at Pilgrim Terrace Retirement Home and would love it if you visit and ask questions! 

WATER! Please water before 10:30 AM and after 4 PM. Use a watering sprinkler head or wand with a shutoff valve. Water at ground level rather than overhead watering other than to clean dusty plants. Berms need to go to the dripline of your plant so tiny subsurface feeder roots can fully supply your plant with water and nutrients it needs.

Father's Day is June 19! Here are some wonderful ideas for green and loving gifts! Click here

Here are wonderful May images! Veggies, flowers, birds! 

If you or a friend would enjoy gardening at a community garden, please join us! June is perfect time to plant more tasty summer heat lovers! A 10 X 20 spot is only $65/year! YES! Go directly to the Westside Community Center, weekdays 10 to 4, to sign up. That's at 423 W Victoria St, Santa Barbara. We will be delighted to meet you, share friendship, the great outdoors, and garden craft!

Across-the-Plot Gardening Tips

June Magical Summer Garden Treats! 

Happy Summer Solstice! Mid Summer Fairy!

Love your Mother! Plant bird & bee food! Think grey water! Grow organic! 
May brought tasty zucchinis, the first cherry tomatoes were eaten. Lettuces. Peppers appeared. Eggplants are blossoming. Potatoes and carrots were harvested and Beans on the bush and vine. A cucumber, many more babies coming! Huge Seascape strawberries! Put harvesting containers on stakes near what you will harvesting there. Convenient and saves time. 

Continue your harvesting, plant more! Definitely time for another round! Okra starts better now, eggplant is happy, and long beans started now like the heat of late summer when they produce those long grand beans as other beans finish! If a plant or two aren't coming along well, replace them. A healthy plant will grow well and quickly in the warmer time coming.

Extend your harvest later into summer by planting more of everything except winter squash, melons, pumpkins, unless you live in the hot foothills. Seeds are fine, transplants are faster. From transplants, more celery, corn, eggplant, leeks, limas, okras, peanuts, peppers, soybeans, squashes, sweet potatoes, and tomatoes. Choose bolt resistant, heat and drought tolerant varieties. Time for Sierra, Nevada, Jericho, Black Seeded Simpson lettuces. Plant another round of anytime fillers: beets, carrots, chicory, chives, slo-bolt cilantro, leeks, green onions, small summer radish, warm season spinach.

Pat Mycorrhiza fungi right on the roots of all your transplants except Brassicas, when you put them in the ground. The fungi increase uptake of nutrients, water, and phosphorus that helps roots and flowers grow and develop. Ask for it bulk at Island Seed & Feed in Goleta.

Remember these excellent companions! Combining them often gives two crops in the same place!
  • Pop in some tasty white potatoes with Zucchini to repel squash bugs
  • Add some quick growing radish with zukes, and trellised together beans/cukes to repel cucumber beetles, the little guys with yellow/green stripes. 
  • Also plant radishes with eggplants/cucumbers and zucchini act as a trap plant for flea beetles
  • Plant a flock of carrots intermingled with cilantro and chamomile! Just plain pretty.
  • Basil is a natural with tomatoes, smells great and is super nutritious! Super nutritious Culinary dandelions are thought to repel white flies, mosquitoes, tomato hornworms, aphids, houseflies, and asparagus beetles.  
Flowering plants starting to produce need another feed, sidedressing. Give them a deep drink of tea or fish emulsion. Spade fork in some holes, pour your tea down them. if you don't have skunks or other predators, give them a good fish emulsion/kelp liquid feed down those holes! Or pull back the mulch, scratch in a little chicken manure - especially with lettuces. Top with a 1/2" of compost and some tasty worm castings! If you prefer organic granulated fertilizer sprinkle it around evenly. Recover with your mulch, straw, then water well and gently so things stay in place. That's like giving them manure/compost/worm tea in place. If any of your plants are looking puny, have yellowing leaves, might give them a bit of blood meal for a quick pick me up.

Please always be building compost and adding it, especially near short rooted plants and plants that like being moist. Compost increases your soil's water holding capacity.

Summer WATERING is a skill! The key to good looking fruits is regular watering and enough water. After you water stick your finger in the soil and see if is wet below or just at the surface. A general rule is an inch a week. Summer plants often need more during hot weather. If plants don't get enough water, production is sporadic, fruits misshapen, they are susceptible to pests and diseases. Too much water brings 'soft' plants susceptible to aphids and leafminers.
  • Water early AM when possible to let plants dry off, avoid mildew. 
  • Water at ground level with a long wand with a shut off valve, rather than overhead watering unless you plant is dusty. Dust brings whiteflies.
  • Keep seeds and emerging and young seedlings moist. Lay down some Sluggo type stuff, as soon as you have seeded, to jam up the slugs and snails before they have a chance to eat your prize babies.
  • Irregular watering makes beans and cucumbers curl, strawberries to have irregular shapes.
  • Chard needs plenty of water to make those big sweet leaves. However, chard naturally shuts down and droops in the heat of the day. Don't mistakenly drown it!
  • Water beans, cukes, lettuces and short rooted varieties of strawberries more frequently. They are all workhorses producing fast and repeatedly, cukes making a watery fruit even. Lettuces need to put on growth fast to stay sweet. Heavy producers like beans need plenty, especially if they are closely planted.
  • Tomatoes have deep tap roots and can make do with little water. In fact, dry farming concentrates their taste!
  • Big plants like corn and zucchini need ample water as do huge vines like winter squash, melons, pumpkins. Stake the centers of vine basins so you know where to water the roots.
MULCH If you haven't mulched yet, this is a good time to do it before we go into hot July, August, September. Replenish thin mulch. Use a soil feeding mulch, seedless straw works well. Use an inch or so under tomatoes. You want their soil to get a little air, the soil to dry some, and if you have it, the fungi to die. Otherwise you can put on, up to say, 6" worth. The exception would be to leave soil under melons and other real heat lovers bare so the soil is good and HOT! Yes, they will need more water, so be sure your basin is in good condition and big enough so they get water out to their feeder roots. You can see the dripline of your plant by watering at the central area and seeing where the water falls off its leaves. Plus, mulch prevents light germinating seeds from starting - less weeds!

Pollination! On gray days, help your tomatoes by giving the cages or the main stems a few sharp raps to help the flowers pollinate. You can do that on sunny days too, best time is about 11 AM, to make more pollination, more tomatoes. Honey bees don't pollinate tomatoes, so build solitary bee condos for native bees. Native bees, per Cornell entomology professor Bryan Danforth, are two to three times better pollinators than honeybees, are more plentiful than previously thought and not as prone to the headline-catching colony collapse disorder that has decimated honeybee populations. Plant plenty of favorite bee foods!

Pest prevention! One of the fastest things you can do is plant radish, a couple here, a couple there. They repel those cute but very nasty disease carrying cucumber beetles, are a trap plant for flea beetles. Plant enough for eating, leave one to grow up and protect your plants. If you are by road or in a dusty windswept area, rinse off the leaves to make your plants less attractive to whiteflies. Also, remove yellowing leaves that attract whiteflies. Smart pests adore tasty healthy plants just like we do. They also make us see which plants are weak or on their way out. Give those plants more care or remove them. Replace them with a different kind of plant that will do well now. Don't put the same kind of plant there unless you have changed the conditions - enhanced your soil, installed a favorable companion plant, protected from wind, terraced a slope so it holds moisture, opened the area to more sun. Be sure you are planting the right plant at the right time!

Disease prevention. Water early AMs to give plants time to dry off. Use a long water wand with a shutoff valve and water underneath as possible. Choose excellent and appropriate plant varieties, using companion plants in wise combinations. Make super soil, at bloom start sidedress and later in the season to extend their production time. Regularly apply prevention formulas more details and all the recipes. Keep up on maintenance. These are the things that keep your plants in top form! They will be less likely to have diseases. See more in the April Newsletter

If your soil has disease fungi, remove any leaves that can or will touch the ground. Remove infected leaves ASAP, don't let the leaves of one plant touch another. This especially goes for tomatoes. Remove alternate plants that have grown to overcrowded conditions. The remaining plants will grow bigger, produce more with ample space. See April's chat on Tomato and Cucumber specifics - A word on the Wilts. Lay down a loose 1" deep straw mulch blanket. Too much straw keeps the soil moist, which is good for some plants, not for others. Under maters and cukes, we want some air circulation and a bit of soil drying. In their case, the main purpose of mulch is to keep your plant's leaves from being water splashed or in contact with soil, the main way they get fungi/blight diseases. 

Keep your garden clean. Remove debris, weed. Remove mulch from under plants that were diseased and replace with clean mulch.

HARVEST! Harvest at your veggie's peak delicious moment! Juicy, crunchy, that certain squish in your mouth, sweet, full bodied flavor, radiant, vitamin and mineral rich! Besides being delicious and beautiful, it keeps your plant in production. Left on the plant, fruits start to dry and your plant stops production, goes into seeding mode. The fruit toughens or withers, maybe rots, sometimes brings insect pests that spread to other plants. Keep beans picked, no storing cucumbers on the vine. Give away or store what you can't eat. Freezing is the simplest storage method. Cut veggies to the sizes you will use, put the quantity you will use in baggies, seal and freeze. Whole tomatoes, chopped peppers, beans, onions. Probiotic pickle your cukes. Enjoy your sumptuous meals! Sing a song of gratitude and glory!

What is one to say about June, the time of perfect young summer, the fulfillment of the promise of the earlier months, and with as yet no sign to remind one that its fresh young beauty will ever fade. ~ Gertrude Jekyll

Gertrude was an influential British horticulturist, garden designer, artist and writer. She created over 400 gardens in the United Kingdom, Europe and the United States, and wrote over 1,000 articles for magazines such as Country Life and William Robinson's The Garden. Jekyll has been described as "a premier influence in garden design" by English and American gardening enthusiasts. 1843- 1932 

The Green Bean Connection started as correspondence for the Santa Barbara CA USA Pilgrim Terrace Community Garden. We are very coastal, during late spring/summer in a fog belt/marine layer area most years, locally referred to as the May grays, June glooms and August fogusts. Keep that in mind compared to the microclimate niche where your veggie garden is. Bless you for being such a wonderful Earth Steward!

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Common SoCal Summer Garden Pests -
Aphids, Cucumber Beetles, Leafminers, Whiteflies 

Garden pests happen to the best of gardeners! They are seasonal and hungry. They like healthy plants, may clean up failing plants. They can be short lived, all year residents, have different breeding cycles. Sometimes you can avoid them by planting their food when they aren't around. They can be devastating at one growth stage, have no effect at another. Know your creatures and their timing in your area!

Insect Ladybird Beetle Ladybug Larvae Beneficial Aphids
Ladybird Beetle, Ladybug larvae making short work of Green Peach Aphids, Myzus persicae (great image compliments of Judith at Easyponics). These aphids eat peppers, spinach, tomato, cucurbits, carrot, lettuce, legumes, corn, flowers, flowering plum, and stone fruit.

Aphids are topping the list. Aphids mean ants, then white flies. Lay back on water and fertilizers because they 'soften' plants and make them easy for aphids to feed on. Tiny though they are, they do suck the life from your plant, reduce its vigor. And, bless them, they have the ability to make wings when they need them! When they are overcrowded or the food source deteriorates, they migrate to other plants!!! Stop them! Remove leaves, even the whole plant when they are so infested you can't just hose the aphids away. 
  • Grow habitat plants for aphid predator beneficial insects
  • Be generous with worm castings, they suppress aphids. When planting, just 10-40% of the total volume of the plant growth medium is all that is needed, 25% is ideal! If you have aphids, get a spade fork, push it down, rock it back and forth to make water channels. Lay down about an inch of castings out to the dripline, mulch with about an inch of straw and slowly water in. This is like making a worm casting tea. Also/or, make a worm casting tea and foliar feed both the undersides and tops of leaves.
  • Keep an eye on your plants, smush, knock off or hose away aphids. They can be white, black, brown, gray, yellow, light green, or even pink! Once numbers are high and they have begun to distort leaves, often at the center of the plant, it's difficult to impossible to control these pests. The curled leaves shelter aphids from insecticides and natural enemies, so keep a keen watch.
The enemy of my enemy.... If you are in luck, a natural predator may knock out the colony, or the weather may get hotter. Natural enemies include predatory ladybirds, hoverfly larvae, parasitic wasps, aphid midge larvae, crab spiders, lacewings and entomopathogenic fungi like Lecanicillium lecanii and the Entomophthorales.

If not, ant bait is on your shopping list. Different attractants are more effective against different species of ants and at different times of the year. Get the right kind of ant stuff, or it won't work. Ants literally protect and tend aphids, keeping them underground in winter, then bring them above ground when the time is right. See the details at UC IPM ANT Management Guide so you can make the right choice.

Insect Western Striped Cucumber Beetle Damage

Western Striped Cucumber beetles, not to be confused with Bagrada bugs. Bagradas appear and thrive when temps are 85 degrees and above for 3 or 4 days or more in a row. They are into Brassicas, where cucumber beetles are into cucurbits - cukes and squashes, chewing flowers and leaves.

Aphids may top the list, but Cucumber beetles are the most deadly.

The kind of cucumber beetles we are currently having are the little stripey jobs, black and yellow green. Cucurbits are so sensitive few insecticides can be used and insecticides kill bees. The beetles are particularly bad news to cucumbers because they spread diseases that can kill plants in as quickly as three days! Sadly, once your plant starts to go down there is no saving it. Only alternative is to replant...somewhere else.

Whenever possible get disease/pest resistant varieties. Cornell's disease resistant varieties list is worth the read for all veggies! Many agricultural universities develop fine veggies that get used worldwide, ie Cornell developed Marketmore 76 and 80 Cucumbers. Also check your local university for varieties specially developed for your area. 

Plant smaller groups of plants in different areas so the beetle doesn't march right on through a line of plants and you lose them all at once. When planted in different areas, biodiversity, you might lose most of them but not all. Make companion planting part of your practice. Radish repels the beetles. Plant radish in advance closely to where you will plant cukes. Always think in terms of groupings of plants. Smush, smush, smush. The Old Farmer's Almanac emphasizes preparing for next year....

Make habitat! For us organic gardeners, here is some info from a Helpful Gardener thread: Predators and parasites that prey on cucumber beetles include hunting spiders, web-weaving spiders, soldier beetles, carabid ground beetles, tachinid flies, braconid wasps, bats and entomopathogenic fungi and nematodes. Braconid wasps (Centisus diabrotica, Syrrhizus diabroticae) and tachinid flies (Celatoria diabroticae, C. setosa) are important natural enemies of cucumber beetles, with parasitism rates reaching 22 percent and 40 percent, respectively. Carabid beetles (Scarites spp. and Evarthrus sodalis) consumed all three life stages (larvae, pupae, adults) of spotted cucumber beetle, striped cucumber beetle and squash bugs in a laboratory feeding trial. Bats are voracious eaters of insects and more farmers are erecting bat houses to enhance biological control of crop pests. [I'm concerned bats might chow down on beneficial insects as well?]

Spinach, Beet and Chard Leafminer damage looks dire, but is common, not immediately life threatening, doesn't affect the flavor of the plant but sure is ugly and can kill your plant if ignored! Leafminers are the larvae of several different insects that feed between the layers of plant leaves sucking out their nutrients. Heavy damage slows plant growth and the plant may drop its leaves. 

Insect Leafminer Damage on Spinach, Chard, Beet Leaves

Details from U of Illinois Extension: Spinach and Swiss chard leafminer flies are 1/2 inch long and gray with black bristles. This leaf miner lays eggs on the underside of the leaves singly or in batches up to five side by side. One larva may feed on more than one leaf. After feeding for about two weeks, the larvae drop from the leaves onto the ground where it pupates and overwinters in the soil as pupae. REMOVE the eggs or remove the leaves. NO PUPAE is what we want. Stop the cycle!

Plant so neighboring plants' leaves don’t touch each other. Separate your plants by planting in different areas; interplant with herbs. These are NOT plants to row crop. Keep your chard harvested and well watered to keep it growing and producing fast, sometimes outgrowing the leafminers. Give it plenty of worm castings both in the surrounding soil and on the surface of your soil. Cover the castings with a thin layer of straw to keep the castings moist. Some say soft fast growth is perfect habitat for the miners, but chard is meant to be a fast grower with plenty of water to keep it sweet! If you can’t eat it Insect Leafminer Parasitic Wasp Diglyphus isaeaall, find a friend or two who would appreciate some and share your bounty! Or remove and give away plants until you have what you can keep up with. Plant something else delicious in your new free space!

The parasitic wasp Diglyphus isaea, in the image, is a commercially available beneficial insect that will kill leafminer larva in the mine. It you see this one, thank it, protect it, it is a beneficial insect. But really, for small scale gardens, even just the removal of the ugly leaves or sections of a leaf are often enough. This is the least damaging of the pest problems listed here.

Whiteflies do the honeydew thing like aphids, leaving a nasty sticky black sooty mold over your plant's leaves. The honeydew attracts ants, which interfere with the activities of Whitefly natural enemies. They are hard to get rid of, so keep a close watch on the undersides of leaves, especially if you see little white insects flying away when your plant is disturbed. They are not likely to be moths. Whiteflies develop rapidly in warm weather, in many parts of California, they breed all year. Prevent dusty conditions. Remove yellowing leaves. Keep ants out of your plants. Hose them away immediately. See more

Insect Whitefly

Worm castings, used properly per plant, can work wonders. Prevention is smartest. Just mix in that 25% in your planting medium or soil. If it's after the fact and you have the flies, try mixing in the castings, water slowly and well for it to mingle with your soil. The other method, that works with Hibiscus, is to lay on an inch of castings. DO NOT dig in. Water well and wait. Depending on your situation, waiting may not be feasible. Another way would be to foliar feed with worm casting tea. While you are at it, push your spade fork down into the soil, rock it to make wider holes, slowly pour the tea mix down the holes for root uptake. The foliar feeding and pouring the tea down is probably the fastest solution. Or, do all of the above - lay on castings, pour tea down spadefork holes, foliar feed! 

You can order Whitefly parasites and predators, but they are for greenhouse use.

For all pests, diseases too, choose excellent award winning and location appropriate plant varieties. Plant at optimum times - restrain yourself from jumping the gun, nor miss optimum planting windows. Use companion plants in wise combinations. Plant year-round habitat for beneficial insects! Make super soil, don't neglect sidedressing. Regularly apply prevention formulas - more details and all the recipes. Keep up on maintenance like weeding out pest habitat, remove debris piles, remove yellowing leaves that attract whiteflies. Keep your plants in top form!

Know that pests adore tasty healthy plants just like we do. It's natural! And, of course, they clean up plants that are weak, have troubles that would harm other plants, or are on their way out. Replace those plants with a different kind of plant suited to the time of year it has become.
 Don't put the same kind of plant there unless you have changed the conditions - enhanced your soil, installed a favorable companion plant, protected the area from cooling or drying wind, terraced a slope so it holds moisture, opened the area to more sun. Think about what you might do differently, how you could make conditions better for that plant next year or is your climate really not amenable to that plant? Surrender is sometimes garden wisdom.

Yep. Pests are our teachers too.

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Tower or On the Ground Gardening?!  

Garden Tower Institution Feeding Homeless
Stepping Up for the Homeless of Los Angeles

A lot of factors enter into this choice!

These days towers are the latest. They are popular with institutions. Tower gardens require as little as 10% of the land and water traditional growing methods use. In drought areas they can provide food that might not otherwise be available. Feeding an impoverished area can be done using only a few square feet! At home, if you don't have land, fewer and fewer do, nor a community garden anywhere nearby, they are great for sunny small spaces like balconies, patios, rooftops—even in your kitchen with grow lights! If you have the knack for it, they are easy to maintain. Institutions set up wonderful processing areas and the freshest food is delivered to the chef daily!

A commercial facet is raising plants to install in the towers. Plants are frequently replaced, so it is an ongoing moneymaker! And, of course, selling the towers, especially to others starting tower businesses, is big bucks at $500 or more per tower, plus any extra gear and food for the plants. It is said you make your initial expense money back quickly.

People that can't dig, some seniors, people in wheelchairs can easily garden a tower.  Special raised beds are needed if gardening in the soil, and if in chairs, the area needs to be wheelchair safe. If you enjoy puttering in the soil this may be your choice rather than a tower.

Towers are squeaky clean. Gloves may be your choice when soil gardening, but if you love the touch of living soil, no gloves are needed! Soil gardeners have great immune systems!

No digging with towers. What a plus! Then there are others of us that love digging. Hustling a shovel full of soil is pure satisfaction, although no-dig gardens are more the practice these days. However, adding compost you made yourself, knowing exactly what's in it, gives a lot of peace. For some of us having friends contribute, give us, share their kitchen bits, puts a lot of love into our garden, a community effort. Veggies are shared in return. It brings people together.  

Little plants or big plants. Towers have their limits, but they can grow a surprising variety of veggies! Put vining plants like cucumbers at the bottom and let them roam if you have the room or string up a trellis. Anything except root crops - ie carrots, beets, potatoes. Towers excel at lettuces and salad plants, but not fruit trees. 

Fast! Tower garden plants are super growers! Flavor? Some say the fast forced growth of tower produced plants have less taste, while others think it is terrific! Soil garden veggies often vary per how much and at which growth stage they are watered. 

Growing organically? Some of the tower food mixes have ingredient names you can't pronounce or they call it 'earth minerals' without defining what that is. If the feeding blend is proprietary, you don't know what you are getting, eating. Some systems use fish poop in the water. That's cool. Soil has a dancing retinue of bacteria and fungi, is also filled with protozoa, nematodes, mites and micro arthropods. There can be 10,000 to 50,000 species in less than a teaspoon of soil. In a handful of healthy soil, there is more biodiversity in just the bacterial community than you will find in all the animals of the Amazon basin. That is exciting whole food for our plants. Maybe in 15, 20 years we will know which, if either, is better for humans.

Being on one type of food, that tower is dedicated to that kind of plant. If you want strawberries, that like acidic conditions, you need a different tower if you want maximum production.

Do you like birds singing, perching over your shoulder while you are working, bringing seeds ready fertilized in poop? A plant you have never grown before volunteers and it's a surprise and learning experience! Some people can't stand garden creatures, bugs lizards, even a snake or two, while others love bumblebees, rolly pollies, spidies, worms, plants almost as tall as you are swaying in the breeze. 

No weeds! Towers cut down on your garden maintenance time by having no weeds! Some of us love weeds and all they have to offer. They celebrate the seasons. Creatures live and grow in weeds. At times they are ground cover. Some are edible, others are herbs used in healing formulas. They are all unique, interesting, even beautiful.

No soil-borne diseases or pests! No slugs, snails, no gophers with towers! Hooray! Some are perhaps not grown for a long enough period to get pests.

Tower pumps are ON from as little as 12 mins/hour to all the time. Pumps can be a comforting sound or a drab drone. Maybe you get used to it, maybe you don't. If they bother you, put them out of earshot around a corner, put up a baffle. But the water sound some of them make is like a wonderful brook along a high mountain trail! 

What is the most common reason people quit gardening? I see abandoned towers here and there on my walk abouts. And I see abandoned raised beds or garden areas. Towers are somewhat technical. There is the water hook up, staying supplied with plant food. Mixing it in, making sure the pump is doing ok. There are weekly water level checks, pH twice weekly or more, salt level checks every two weeks, monthly pump filter cleaning. Draining and refilling between plantings or once a year. Some people enjoy these processes, great fun! Others may find themselves forgetting or bored once the novelty wears off. Actually, the same goes for on the ground gardens and all their complications. And life takes over at times.

Garden Tower Commercial Couple Guests Garden Tower Residential

The look is hugely different! Commercial towers in rows can be as handsome as the order of a marching band. Tidy, though at home they may be a lot more relaxed. A soil garden can look like a beautiful park! It can be a diversified no row rampant affair wild as a jungle, a virtual food forest! Each year it looks different as weather varies. Soil gardens can grow anything, including fruit trees! They support tall flowering plants - cilantro, celery, carrots, chard, beets, lettuces - all marvelous bee foods making seeds to plant next year. They have incredible earthy scents on a warm afternoon. Lovely flower companion plants can be planted among food producers. 

Garden Beds Nature Parklike Wooden Fence

Your temperament, your Spirit, is probably the main reason for your choice. The things you like to do. Tower lovers like the mechanics, how tidy they are, no land needed, productivity to feed an army, control and efficiency, perhaps a business. Soil lovers enjoy collaborating with Mother Nature, her surprises, thrive on the entirety of a living holistic garden.

It's all good.  

Other Community Gardens!

A Food Not Lawn Garden in our Community!

This home, near the intersection of Islay & Robbins Sts, is my 2016 Santa Barbara CA Westside neighborhood Food Not Lawns choice! Imagine this garden when the plants are full grown, up to the tops of those trellises!

Community Garden - Santa Barabara CA Veggie Food Not Lawns

This home garden excels at growing a lot in a small space by going vertical. It is clear the plants are thriving and well cared for. They have taken the fullest advantage of the afternoon sun by facing their structures to the Southwest, so they have tomatoes of size and color well before we at Pilgrim Terrace Community Garden are getting them!

There are three trellises. Two are short, the one in the center, tomatoes, is long. The short one behind it is cukes and beans. The short one in front is peas! Then there are various other plants around the perimeter of the yard, including that handsome rosemary at front left. As you can see, bottom right corner, they have been growing red onions too!

Community Garden - Santa Barabara CA Veggie Food Not Lawns Tomatoes
The tomato trellis

Water usage is efficient since the plants are mulched and concentrated along the structures though, yes, there are plants scattered along the fenceline too. They are using the land wisely, letting their squashes ramble in an open area by the driveway.

Community Garden - Santa Barabara CA Veggie Food Not Lawns Tomatoes Community Garden - Santa Barabara CA Veggie Food Not Lawns Squashes

Congratulations to these local heroes! Small yard, big returns! Garden to table fresh nutrition!

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Upcoming Garden Events!

Walk or bike to events as possible! Heal the land, heal yourself.

Home Garden Expo Greywater Rain Capture - Rain and grey water stored in barrels provide all the water for the Scheck’s vegetable garden!
Rain and grey water stored in barrels provide all the water! Scheck’s vegetable garden!

Get your greywater & rain capture questions answered, get supplies, good deals, have fun!

June 11 & 12  - Santa Barbara Home & Garden Expo
Earl Warren Showgrounds - 3400 Calle Real, 93105 

Fine art, fine craft, crafts, commercial/retail and homegrown products!

Celebrate SUMMER! IT'S HOT! This year's theme is Legends!

Wonderful Artist, LynnFogel's painting inspired by the Santa Barbara CA Summer Solstice Parade!

Wonderful painting by Lynn Fogel inspired by the Santa Barbara CA Summer Solstice Parade!

June 24 to 26 Summer Solstice Parade & Festival
Alameda Park - 1400 Santa Barbara Street, 93101 

The Santa Barbara CA Parade begins at Cota & State Streets on Saturday, June 25, 2016 at noon and ends in Alameda park between 1 PM and 2 PM. There we will have fine art, fine craft, crafts, commercial/retail and corp./information exhibitors, and 25 food booths. There will be 2 stages with Regional and Local talent and the following music, Alternative, Beach, Jazz, DJ/Dance/Techno, Salsa, Cajun/Zydeco, Blues, World, Roots, New Age, Funk, R & B/Soul, Reggae, Rock, Folk and Latin. This event also includes a children's festival! Come one, come all! 

JUNE-August FARM CAMP at Fairview Gardens!

Broccoli Bandits?!  Pumpkin Pals?! See More & Schedule


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Leave a wild place, untouched, in your garden! It’s the place the faeries and elves, the little people can hang out. When you are down on your hands and knees, they will whisper what to do. All of a sudden an idea pops in your mind….

In the garden of thy heart, plant naught but the rose of love. – Baha’U’Uah
"Earth turns to Gold in the hands of the Wise" Rumi

Radish Sprouts looking at the Sky!

Cerena Childress, Plot 46
elist holder Pilgrim Terrace Community Garden

Green Bean Connection BLOG! 
May GBC Newsletter
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