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Mayday! Gardens 2022

Mayday! Gardens 2022

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Free

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Location

Homestead Organics Farm

175 Skalkaho Highway

Hamilton, MT 59840

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Eventbrite's fee is nonrefundable.

Event description
Ready-to-plant vegetable, herb, and flowers with tips for success. Growing our local food resilience together. FREE (YOUR FOOD)!

About this event

Mayday! Mayday! Mayday! Gardens-the food, soil, and seeds need our attention now. Mayday! Mayday! Mayday! Gardens-growing together for local food and societal resilience.

A supported journey into small-plot agriculture, gardening, soil building, food, and seed saving. Free, ready-to-plant vegetable, herb, and flower starts selected for easy growing in Montana. Informative and fun videos will help you be successful. Everyone is invited to join Mayday! Gardens to plant, harvest, and eat together. No gardening experience necessary, Everyone can grow food!

We will grow food and we will release ourselves from the current system of Corporate-Industrial-polluting-Slave-driven-gene-manipulated-subsidized-unhealthy Agriculture-as-a-profit-driven-Big-Business.

We will create a food system that is abundant, fair, healthy for consumers, farmers, and the planet, and is locally focused. We will build our soils, our health, our community, and our future. “Change Your Food, Change Your World!”

How and where you plant Your Future Food is only limited by your imagination. A small, 4’X6’ square will work, a 1’wide strip that is 24’ long will work, planter boxes, large patio pots, and raised beds will work. Just plant your future food, please.

Mayday! Gardens can be in your front yard, along the driveway or boulevard, in a community garden plot: anywhere with soil, sunlight, and a way to get water.

Preparing to grow Your Future Food is easy. All you need is a shovel, a garden fork, or a rototiller.

Maintaining Your Future Food is fun and easy. All you need is access to clean water and a bucket, watering can, or hose. It will be rewarding to care for your plants, will give you a bit of exercise, and will make you happy.

Harvesting Your Food will be the BEST FUN, and Your Food will taste INCREDIBLE! Preparing it into delicious and healthy meals will be easy. We’ll share tips to help you be successful including recipe and meal ideas, designed especially for the vegetables in your Mayday! Garden.

If you usually purchase plant starts from local farmers, please continue to do so. If you are new to growing food, have a limited income, or want to expand and grow more food than ever before, please reserve your Mayday! Garden today.

Mayday! Gardens are grown using locally saved seeds and Montana made potting soil. They are seeded and tended by our Youth Farm Interns. Donations are welcome to help support our efforts to get families, children, and community members growing food,building soil, and creating resilience for Montana.

Mayday! Gardens Planting Guide –

Using the space between your outstretched thumb and pinky finger as the standard of measurement (=ONE SHAKA)

Herbs and Flowers:

*Red Clover- perennial that will regrow every year. This can be planted anywhere in your yard or garden and will take up about 2 square feet (4 shakas) when fully grown next year. Harvest the dark pink flowers for use as a tea- fresh or dried. Delicious and supports female health.

*Calendula- annual that produces lots of yellow or orange flowers. The petals add beauty to salads, make a nice tea, and can also be used medicinally. Leave every third flowers to ripen its seeds to replant in future years. Easy seed saving, leave blooms to mature and dry. Needs 1 shaka.

*Sunflower- annual flower that can grow really tall! Sunflowers are our reminder that we are all together as one humanity- and need our own food resilience. Good for seed saving, harvest flower head in the fall. Needs 1 shaka.

*Marigold- annual flower that promotes tomato health when planted together. Easy to save seed- let flower heads fully mature and harvest when dry. Needs 1 shaka.

*Amaranth- beautiful striking red flower with edible leaves and seeds. Easy to save seeds- let flower fully mature and shake off ripe seeds into a bag. Will reseed itself easily. Needs 2 shakas.

*Poppy- beautiful pale green foliage and classic blooms. Easy to save seeds- let flower fully mature and shake ripe seed head into a bag. Will reseed itself easily. Needs 1 shaka.

*Hopi Ceremonial Tobacco- traditional tobacco used in ceremonies honoring the earth and the directions. Easy to save seed- let flowers mature and shake ripe seed heads into a bag. Will reseed itself easily. Needs 2 shakas.

*Mint- plant root cuttings where you will enjoy having mint for a long time! Spreads easily through the roots and is fragrant when mowed or cut. Its easy to dry for later use, and is tasty used fresh in any summer drink. Needs 1 shaka.

Vegetables and Greens-

*Kale- the powerhouse Brassica packed with nutrition and the most adaptable to Montana weather changes. There are several different leaf types- from dark purple to frilly green or dark blue-green leaves. Harvest and enjoy weekly until late fall, but remember to always leave the inner 3 small leaves for regrowth. Must overwinter to produce seed the second year. Needs 2 shakas.

*Chard- related to and tastes much like spinach, but it regrows! Great raw for ‘spinach’ salad or cooked into any food. Use the chopped stems to add crunch to salads or color to cooked dishes. Leave the inner 3 small leaves for regrowth. Must overwinter to produce seed the second year. Needs 2 shakas.

*Kohlrabi- grows a Brassica bulb on the soil surface that can be harvested at baseball to softball size. Peel and grate into salads or dice into cooked dishes, sort of like jicama when chopped and eaten raw. The leaves can be eaten like kale. Young kohlrabi plants have jagged leaves. . Must overwinter to produce seed the second year. Needs 1 shaka.

*Cabbage- Brassica known for its starring role in coleslaw and sauerkraut. Slice off sections to eat raw, cooked, or femented-the whole head will keep in your fridge’s crisper drawer for three or more weeks. Young cabbage plants have very rounded leaves. Must overwinter to produce seed the second year. Needs 2 shakas.

*Broccoli- likely the most famous vegetable, also in the Brassica family. Harvest the main head and leave the plant, letting it grow small side shoots for on-going harvests. Young broccoli leaves are lobed. Easy seed saving- harvest main head then let side shoots grow to full flower. Good for bees. Needs 2 shakas.

*Lettuce- the best carrier for delicious salad dressings! Harvest outside leaves for weeks, cut leaves very short 2-3 times, or let grow into a full-sized head. Easy to save seed- do not harvest head, harvest seeds when white puffs appear. Self pollinating. Needs 1 shaka.

*Chinese Cabbage- fast growing Brassica that provides tasty soft leaves with a juicy center stalk. Enjoy soon by harvesting outer leaves every week week, or let grow to be a whole head. Good for use in fermenting. Will start to make flower shoots about five weeks after transplanting. Stalks and flower are delicious. Easy to save seed- let flowers mature and break off dried seed pods in the fall. Will cross pollinate with Pac Choi. Needs 1 shaka.

*Prize Choi Pac Choi- leafy Brassica with thick, juicy stem. Great in stir-fry or add crunch to salad. Will start to make flower shoots about five weeks after transplanting. Stalks and flowers are delicious. Easy to save seed- let flowers mature and break off dried seed pods in the fall. Will cross pollinate with Pac Choi. Needs 1 shaka.

*Celery- growing your own celery will give you new appreciation for the potential potency of the stalks. Harvest the small outside stalks all summer on one plant, and let one plant grow into thick stalks for early fall harvest. Must overwinter to produce seed the second year. Needs 1 shaka.

***Bush Beans- super easy and can be harvested again and again. Easy to save seed- leave beans to fully mature and harvest when dry. Self pollinating. Each plant needs only a ½ shaka.

***Cucumbers- super sensitive to transplant shock so avoid disturbing the roots by planting into very loose soil and firmly pack the soil around the plants. 2 to 4 plants per ‘hill’. Several steps to save seed- let some fruits fully mature and harvest at the very end of the season. Squish up seeds and pulp, let ferment in a warm area for 2 days, fill container with water and pour off dead seeds and debris. Viable seeds sink and will be found at the bottom of container. Remove and spread out to let dry. Each hill needs 6 shakas.

***Summer Squash/Zucchini- super sensitive to transplant shock so avoid disturbing the roots by planting into very loose soil and firmly pack the soil around the plants. Or, plant seeds as deep as your thumb into the soil and keep moist until the leaves are out. Wear long sleeves when harvesting as the undersides of the leaves can be scratchy. Harvest regularly or they will get big before you know it! Several steps to save seed- let some fruits fully mature and harvest at the very end of the season. Squish up seeds and pulp, let ferment in a warm area for 3-4 days. Fill container with water and pour off dead seeds and debris. Viable seeds sink and will be found at the bottom of container. Remove and spread out to let dry. Each plant needs 6 shakas.

***Winter Squash- super sensitive to transplant shock so avaoid disturbing the roots by planting into very loose soil and firmly pack the soil around the plants. Or, plant seeds as deep as your thumb into the soil and keep moist until the leaves are out. 3-4 seeds per ‘hill’. Several steps to save seed- let some fruits fully mature and harvest at the very end of the season. Squish up seeds and pulp, let ferment in a warm area for 3-4 days. Fill container with water and pour off dead seeds and debris. Viable seeds sink and will be found at the bottom of container. Remove and spread out to let dry. Each hill needs 6 shakas.

***Heirloom Tomato- short seasoned, determinate plants will produce round, red tomatoes that are full of flavor and adapted to the short summers of Montana. The tomatoes in your Mayday Garden do not need a cage or a stake. In case of early fall frost, cover with a bucket at night, or pull the whole plant and hang in the garage so tomatoes can ripen. Easy to save seed- squish up a very ripe tomato and adda small amount of water, let ferment in a warm place 3-4 days. Then, add water to break up white mold layer, and pour off. Viable seeds will sink to the bottom of the container. Mostly self pollinating. Each plant needs 2 shakas.

***Tomatillos- the base ingredient in Salsa Verde, tomatillos grow inside little ‘puffs’ that form on the undersides of the branches. Harvest when the puff is mostly filled out, ripening happens from the bottom of the plant upward over the season. Easy to save seed- let fruit fully mature until puff is full and starts to get dry. squish up whole tomatillo and add a small amount of water, let ferment in a warm place 3-4 days. Then, add water to break up white mold layer, and pour off. Viable seeds will sink to the bottom of the container. Each plant needs 2 shakas.

*** = Vegetables that need a bit of extra care and protection from spring frosts:

Before going to bed, cover young plants with bucket, bowl, or sheet if temperatures are predicted to drop below 32 degrees or if there is a frost warning. The coldest time of the night is usually the early morning, just before sunrise.

Measuring with the shaka:

The shaka, that Hawaiian hand signal for ‘hang loose’, is the distance between your outstretched thumb and pinky finger (about 6 inches for an adult). ‘1 shaka’, what we use as a measure of distance, means each plant needs to be at least one shaka distance away on all sides from other plants. ‘2 shakas’ means the plants needs two shakas of distance in every direction from other plants. Elementary school children should double the number of shakas. If your hands are small, add a bit extra on either end of your shaka.

Advice from a farmer:

Plant ‘Your Future Food’ carefully and with mindfulness for the gift of resilience that food plants share with us. Tuck the plants into the soil, making sure all the original soil is completely covered by your garden soil. Water Your Future Food plants after you plant them, making sure to keep them moist for the first two weeks.

Tend Your Future Food with care and attention. This does not have to take a lot of time but does require a consistent schedule of watering, cultivating, harvesting, preparing, and also eating!

Make spending time maintaining Your Future Food the highlight of your day. Caring for plants feeds our need for connection, and aligns us for co-creating a healthy future: a world that works for everyone.

Adopt an attitude of open discovery. Look for new ways to understand. For example, the German definition for weeds says they are just plants growing in the wrong place at the wrong time!

Connect with Your Future Food plants. Start by appreciating their ability to grow as you watch them take hold in your garden. Smile at the creative and beautiful way nature uses chlorophyll to turn sunlight into leaves, food you get to eat! Thank them for growing, and thank them when you harvest Your Food.

When saving seeds, know you are part of a lineage of seed caretakers who have shared these food plants with the following generations for as long as humans have been growing plants. This is a very special thing. Your grandmother probably did it, your great-great grandmother definitely did it, and every grandmother before her also saved seeds. Enjoy your place in the lineage of seed saving.

Have Fun and Eat Well!! Peace Through Food.

Cultivating Connections Montana: Learn, Work, Grow, Connect

www.cultivatingconnectionsmt.org

Mayday! Gardens 2022 image
Mayday! Gardens 2022 image
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Location

Homestead Organics Farm

175 Skalkaho Highway

Hamilton, MT 59840

View Map

Refund policy

Contact the organizer to request a refund.

Eventbrite's fee is nonrefundable.

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