This year AZ members looked to hard work and the house garden to combat the rising cost of food and low quality of store-bought products. On the 15'x40' plot, lent to us by alumnus Richard Church, we grew tomatoes, zucchini, summer squash, cucumbers, peppers, carrots and even a few eggplants, root crops, and melons! We employed a variety of planting techniques (including remay, black plastic, and good old stick-it-in-the-ground). A small core of actives and alumni spent the summer combating weeds, mildews, rots, and squash bugs to give us a harvest to be reckoned with. Feeding 26 people five nights a week means picking and choosing whether to buy local, produce food ourselves, or buy from a wholesale distributor. We have chosen to supply as much food as we can through this small garden.
Not only did we manage a garden, but our jam and most of our pies were made and put up by AZ members from fruit we picked ourselves from local farms and orchards. Things like salsa, tomato sauce, pickles, and spice peppers, which we use a lot of, are supplemented from our garden produce. Frozen fruits and veggies will later be incorporated into quickbreads and desserts.
We extend our sincerest thanks to Mr. Church for his generosityand support, to our cook Peter Seznec for being willing to try new things, and to all the actives and family members who helped by weeding, harvesting, keeping company, and sending recipes.
When the sun goes down on Ithaca and the snow rolls in, we will be eating well!
Description of photos:
Harvest photo: Every two days ectives head out and harvest, here are the takings from one evening in mid-August
Photo of garden: In the foreground grow several varieties of pepper; green and purple bells, banana, jalapeno, and chile. In the center our garden are volunteer flowers (and one tomato); mostly portulaca and snapdragons. Behind those are our cucumbers under black plastic, irrigated with rain collected in minutely perforated cartons (bright orange!) slowly emptying into holes in the plastic. The garden is surrounded by an ever-encroaching wall of goldenrod, quack grass, and horse nettle - which we fight valiantly and tirelessly.