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The upcoming workday on Tuesday, April 17TH from 3:00 PM – 6:00 PM will focus on general garden maintenance and repair, including a potential focus on repairing the compost corrals; raised bed repair and building; general maintenance and cleaning; fruit tree and bush pruning; and a whole host of other possible activities.

We strongly encourage those friends and members with general building and carpentry skills to join us and lend a hand. If you live near by, and have access to hand tools or battery tools that might be useful, please bring them with you if possible. We will share what basic tools we have.

We also encourage ALL those interested to come out and enjoy an afternoon at Maloca. NO SPECIAL SKILLS REQUIRED.

Check out the pictures from our last workday!

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It’s already time to start thinking about the upcoming growing season! Join us Thursday, February 2ND @ 2:30 – 3:30 in HNES 105 or Wednesday, February 8TH @ 1:00 – 2:00 in HNES 105 to find out how you can become involved in the Maloca Community Garden. We’ll also be discussing everything from what we would like to plant, how we would like to organize the layout, what kind of activities we should plan and opportunities for community engagement and partnerships.

Right now all of the plots are dormant and covered in mulch. Damian, a Master in Environmental Studies student and Production Manager @ Fresh City Farms even helped us plant some winter rye in the Fall to provide ground cover for the Winter. Speaking of Damian, he’s facilitating a panel called World Crops, Local Food? Diasporas and the Food Justice Movement – check out more information on the Faculty of Environmental Studies website!

Some Environmental Studies students enrolled in ENVS 1200 Taking Action: Engaging People and the Environment stopped by in October to help us put the Garden to bed! Although the process was somewhat tedious – weeding  all of the beds, turning the soil, covering the soil with newspaper and cardboard and then adding a final layer of leaves and wood chips – it’ll ensure that this Spring the beds will be ready to go with minimal preparation!

Maloca Community Garden – WINTER 2012 UPCOMING EVENTS

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MES Orientation BBQ

On August 31, 2011, we invited incoming Master in Environmental Studies (MES) to attend a free BBQ at the Garden. In addition to enjoying roasted corn, portobello mushrooms and sausages, we roasted some potatoes that we harvested directly from the ground. This was a great opportunity for upper-year students to socialize with new students and share their experiences and food-related interests. I think I speak for everyone when I say this was a successful event! Since then, a number of students have returned to volunteer – THANK YOU!

Although Fall has arrived, there are still a number of chores to do around the Garden, and beets, radishes, lettuce, tomatoes, tomatillos, peppers and corn to harvest. Check your e-mail for more information about upcoming work days, or stop by our office in the Health, Nursing and Environmental Studies (HNES) building, room 136C.

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This summer a number of groups have visited the Garden. Back in June, a group of volunteers from HSBC  descended upon the garden and pitched in with weeding, bindweed removal and digging up new beds. The event was a part of a larger initiative between the Bank, Black Creek Pioneer Village and York University. Despite the rain (torrential downpour!), everyone maintained positive attitudes as we hiked along a nature trail from the Black Creek Parkland, across a river, past the Hoover House on York University’s campus and up to the Garden.  The Associate Dean of the Faculty of Environmental Studies, Leesa Fawcett, was particularly helpful in teaching the students and participants about the natural history of the area. Following that, a group of employees from North York Harvest toured the Garden in July, as a part of a City-wide community garden tour. However, the fun doesn’t stop there!

On July 29TH, 2011, youth from a shelter called Eva’s Initiatives came to visit the Maloca Community Garden on York University’s Keel campus. At the organization’s main location, the residents tend to a garden that grows a range of vegetables and herbs, so the Director was enthusiastic about the opportunity to visit another urban agriculture site. Shortly after that, a Spanish-speaking group from the Jane/Finch community, El Centro Para Gente de Habla Hispana, visited with their summer camp students on August 2ND, 2011. The Centre supports a unique project that use the tomato as a catalyst for conversations about urban agriculture, Latin American culture, sustainability and global issues such as climate change and migrant labour. You can learn more about it HERE.

The Eva’s Initiatives group helped us plant beet seeds and construct a wire barrier around the freshly-planted bed – to ward off hungry groundhogs who have been collecting their fill of organic produce all summer long (they really loved our beans and cabbage.)  The group also helped us ‘hill’ the potatoes, which is when you add more soil around the base of the plant to prevent any potatoes from being exposed to the sunlight (which can make them poisonous!) and to give them more room to grow. We also harvested beets, carrots and basil.  The group even took home some chocolate mint to transplant into their garden. Overall, it was a great visit – despite a brief downpour. Luckily we had the canopy set up!

The children from the summer camp were mesmerized by the fresh carrots, beets and potatoes we unearthed from the garden. It is always enjoyable to see the Garden from other peoples’ perspectives, especially children! Particular points of interest along the tour were the squash patch, the Three Sisters plot, our compost station, the successional planting experiment in the lettuce bed and our barrel ‘o potatoes, which grows potatoes vertically rather than spread out horizontally in a patch. Again, it was another great visit and Will won the kids over by spraying them with the hose on the really hot day.

P.S. Special thanks to Ben who takes so many wonderful photos of the Maloca Community Garden and posts them on our Facebook page.

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When you join the Maloca Community Garden @ York University, you become a part of something that has been goin’ strong for 12 years. Here are some pictures we have uncovered that highlight Maloca from 2002 – 2009. Many of them come from previous blog entries, but some come from the depths of Maloca’s secret vault! What a trip down memory lane…ENJOY!

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Here’s a look at what’s happened @ the Maloca Community Garden since May 2011. With the ongoing dedication of members, volunteers, the Steering Committee and students pursuing an Individual Directed Study affiliated with the Garden, we have reclaimed land, given the fire pit a makeover, repainted the shed, hosted visitors and enjoyed fresh, organic produce – among other things!

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Maloca’s beds are no longer bare! On Saturday, May 28TH members and volunteers added plants such as tomatoes, cucumbers, squash, beans, corn, broccoli, cauliflower, brussel sprouts etc. to the Garden. We also harvested Maloca’s first crops: radishes and salad greens. Stop by the site to see our new additions, and check out how many beds we have reclaimed!

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P.S. Check the EVENTS section for a schedule of when people will be in the garden in June! Also, check out our FACEBOOK PAGE and FLICKR for more Maloca photos!

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