St. Olaf Garden Research and Organic Works

We're in Sojourners Magazine!

A release from David Gonnerman, the St. Olaf media guru:

What do St. Olaf students Day Burtness and Dan Borek, faculty member Jim Farrell, Assistant VP Pete Sandberg, Grounds Manager Jim Fisher and Bon Appetit have in common? They -- and others -- are all part of “Food for Thought,” a 5-page story about St. Olaf’s very own STOGROW farm and other campus-wide sustainability efforts that appears in the current issue of Sojourners Magazine.

"The St. Olaf community... seems to be enthusiastic about sustainability efforts," writes Steve Thorngate in his article, "Food for Thought: At St. Olaf, students learn to reap what they sow," that appears in the current issue of Sojourners Magazine. These efforts, he continues, "reflect the cooperation of students, faculty and staff who share a commitment to connect the life of the mind with the world of the physical, to live a collective existence intentionally on the earth." Select "Food for Thought" from the link below and complete the brief online registration form for free online access to Sojourners.

In other news, we're the proud owners of an eight foot tall grow rack! We haven't been able to find greenhouse space this year -- last year we shared space with the plant physiology class in the Bio greenhouse but due to increased class size there is no longer enough room for our transplants! Our Poly-Tex greenhouse is still in great shape out on the farm but it still gets a bit cold at night to leave the wee transplants out there. So, it looks like we'll have to buy a ton of transplants this year and do a lot of direct seeded crops like salad mix and beans. Our grow rack holds 20 trays, so we'll see if we can't start some summer squash or something in time for planting. To fix this problem for next year we're contemplating insulating the STOGROW greenhouse and hooking up an electricity source to heat it during the early spring.

To celebrate Earth Week yesterday we had our first work session. We're planning to expand the borders of the garden extensively, so Heidi, Moe, Ted, and Stephanie and I hauled hay bales, rocks, pallets, and potato cages to clear the path for Ray Larson's mulch tiller. Then we had a surprise guest -- Campus Ecology professor Jim Farrell! He made the mistake of telling us that he was good with a shovel thanks to a few summers working for a water company, so we all got to work digging up a few layers of black plastic that lined a section we wanted to till. We got all the plastic up, but the best part of the project was discovering the golden, red, and black ant colonies, the hibernating June bugs, and the fat wriggling worms that were under the plastic. It was a blissfull return to childhood... We all forgot our work for a few minutes and had our noses inches above the industrious ants, rear ends up in the air, and our attention completely captured by the small worlds in the soil.


Blogger Chris said...

This link will take you straight to the article. Way to go, Stogrow!

1:51 PM  

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