Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Raised Bed Sub-Irrigated Planters: A solution for urban gardening

For millenia, soil has meant life, the source of our harvest. That makes it one of the cruelest ironies of our post-industrial world that so much urban soil is harmful. There is a whole host of industrial contaminants, from lead to cadmium to dioxins, that may be found in our back yard farms.

Raised beds are the solution, based on trucking in dirt and making sure it does not leech. But there is sub-irrigated (SIP) solution, a planter that does not need the dirt, and that does a better job of meeting a plants needs. Most SIPs are made of plastic, like the famous earthbox, or its many DIY iterations.

Well, Robert Hyland over at insideurbangreen has let us in on a great new compromise--a sub-irrigated raised bed planter--made of wood no less!. In this post, he gives us a materials list and basic how-to.

This post is a must for community gardens looking for new solutions to the old challenge of urban soil. But, I should warn you--they work better too!

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Greening Schools: A handy guide

This simply written whole school guide was produced by the Worcester PolyTechnic Institute in partnership with a Costa Rican High School(Carlos Pascua Zúñiga High School).

Its an impressive project that more NYC schools should consider taking a page from!

There are activities applicable for every type of class, every type of student, and every part of the school.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Happy SIP Container Gardening! Earthbox is just the Beginning

On the roof at Bushwick Campus, our GreenLab is getting its first workout. Inspired by the Earthbox we got at Home Depot, we are now expirementing with a few other DIY planters types.

We have a lot of 5 gallon "carboy" Deer Park bottles. They take quite a lot of work to cut open, I have found...

Thanks, custodian crew! I don't have my own circular saw!

The Cat Litter box was much easier. Just picked it up on the street. Both are bottom reservoir type containers, like the tote box in the last post. They both have drain holes for
access water.

i have a tote box type planter I'll show ya'll next week. Soon, we'll take on tires!