Sunday, February 24, 2019

++++++++++++++++Dump Trucks and Bobcats+++++++++++++++

"If they give you lemons, make lemonade!"

Today I found out that the lot we were given to garden in, was used as a landfill
site when they paved the street in front.  No wonder we keep finding large rocks and pieces of concrete as we try to clear the land.

Barbara and I were trying to meet this challenge when Barb had a brilliant idea...Call J.P.

John Paul Dwyer is a General Construction & Remodeling expert with many
years of experience in the Lakeside area.

He is also an angel.

He quickly came to our rescue when Barbara called.  He suggested that we use topsoil instead of digging out the landfill site....and offered his machines and crew.  Next thing I know we're driving down the carretera, looking at his soil selections, he is sending a truckload of the stuff to the Vivero and to top it all off, will also send his guy with a Bobcat to distribute the soil.

Soil being delivered.

After the soil delivery, we waited for the Bobcat to arrive.  Just like clockwork, The Mayor decided to pay us a visit to see how the nursery was progressing and found lots of action on the site.

The Baby Bobcat came humming down the street and soon was fast at work distributing the soil.

The soil distributed, it was time for us to get to work, clearing any stones and spreading the final mounds.

A new volunteer, Ana daughter of Doña Catalina, came to the garden today.  Ana is a university student studying Civil Engineer, a bright and strong force herself.  She has experience in gardening both here and in Mexico City and was a wonderful resource.

Soon the newly delivered soil was transformed into true planting beds.

Tune in next week to see how the gardens grow.

We'd like to thank our gardening angel, J.P. Dwyer for his quick and generous assistance with our vivero, Barbara Reinhart, Paula Whittingham, The Mayor, The Brigadistas and the lovely people of San Juan Tecomatlan for allowing us to make this happen in their town.

Friday, February 22, 2019

++++++++++++++Cooking Class In La Zapotera+++++++++++

As with most things gastronomic, we start with a clean, beautiful cooking pot or vessel.

In this case, Karen and Harvey Bernier allowed us to use one of their special cooking pots.

The crew at the La Zapotera Community Center kitchen had asked us to help them broaden their culinary repertoire.  Harvey offered to teach them how to make Italian Tomato Sauce...and they loved the idea.

Harvey brought 2 boxes of ripe tomatoes for us to cook with

as well as lovely Bell Peppers, Chayotes and Chiles Poblanos.

The tomatoes were heavenly.

And Harvey was a great teacher.

Cooking Class Kitchen Staff

The vegetables were cleaned and prepped.

Sra. Yoli approves.

In go the garlic and onion to saute.

Prepped veggies get mixed.

The prep crew at wok

When you start with gorgeous cookware, anything is possible.

Simmer, cook and presto....Italian Tomato Sauce!

Fco. with the cooking staff of La Zapotera.

Italian Sauce in Mexican Cookware

As usual, we always have children around this case Eric, who was interested in what we were doing, but shy.  Perhaps Eric will cook at the Cordon Bleu one day?

Thank you to Harvey and Karen Bernier for their constant support of our efforts.

They are our angels.

We'd also like to invite you to a new monthly event....

"Luncheon in La Zapotera"

Come meet the people of La Zapotera, sample their delicious food
and get to know their culture and their Community Center.

Monday, February 11, 2019

+++++++++++++Putting Your House (Vivero) In Order++++++++++

When we arrived at La Esperanza Vivero this Sat. I noticed that across the street a pile of old tires and broken plastic items was sitting...not a normal sight in San Juan Tecomatlan, 
known for its cleanliness of town.

The Brigadistas had been there during the previous week cleaning up the arroyo
that runs along our Vivero property.

It was an ugly job, but someone had to do it.

 Clean Arroyo

  Gracias Brigadistas!

Plant Donations

We had several plant donations this week, the most impressive being the vanload of plants Brad and I collected at our friend Joan Ward's home in La Salvias.

The potting Brigade was fierce!

They went to town separating, amending, planting.

Beautiful plants for our grand opening sale.

While one group worked on potting, the other worked on clearing our plot.

More buried concrete was found....

The Brigadistas carried on...

And won!

We'd like to thank our friend Joan Ward for her generous plant donations,
our constant volunteers, friends and supporters.

Watch Us Grow!

Tuesday, February 5, 2019

+++++++++++++++++++Girls and Power Tools+++++++++++++++++

(Photos courtesy of Douglas Miller's phone)

So we continue preparing our planting area at the Vivero La Esperanza.  It is hot, dry, dusty work.

It isn't a surprise that we get tired quickly and look for shade and distraction.

(BTW I'm looking for a horse and plow to help the process)

Our volunteer, Douglas Miller, continues to gift wonderful instruction to the youth.

I gave a pre-soil session on why soil health is so important to our vivero.

My 3 students were very attentive and soaked in the info.  We amended the soil with worm tea, germination soil and compost.

Earth Box being planted.

 Our germination table


The name "lasagnaing" refers. to the method of building the garden, which is, essentially, adding layers of organic materials that will “cook down” over time, resulting in rich, fluffy soil that will help your plants thrive.

Also known as “sheet composting,” lasagna gardening is great for the environment because you're using your yard and kitchen waste and essentially composting it in place to make a new garden.

No-dig, No-till

Girls With Drills

Our vivero sign was yelling to be hung, so Douglas brought his power tools.

Teaching the concepts of measurement, resourcefulness and safety, we set to work.

Seems everyone was interested.

Not to be ignored, our young ladies took the to the drill quite naturally.

The youth all seemed comfortable with the process.

The girls found wire and and clippers and soon the newly drilled sign was ready for hanging.

A humble start, with a lot of heart!

We'd like to thank Paula Wittingham of Vista Del Lago for her generous donations throughout, especially our new white tabes and chairs.

And Gracias to all the volunteers, youth and people of San Juan Tecomatlan
who allowed us to set up shop in their community.

Watch Us Grow!