Hi folks! I’ve decided to breathe life into our blog once more! I know many people have come to this blog looking for us, and it’s been inactive since (gasp!) like 2011. HOWEVER, this year we’ll be doing a little more with our blog – and I hope some of you folks will want to post as well.

As of today I’m sending out emails to individual gardeners from 2013 to see if they want to renew for 2014. I recently realized that bulk emails from our gmail account drops straight into trash for most of you, so individual emails seem like the only way to go. If you don’t hear from me by Monday, May 5, give me a holler on the blog or email me at socialsolutionsmke@gmail.com.

I hope to have the gardens pretty much assigned by Saturday, May 10, so people can start topping off their beds. We should have soil, provided the ground dries off enough that the truck can get in. So – more posts soon. I promise!


The guest of honor – our beautiful lamb – has been stuffed with fall vegetables, herbs and spices, marinated and injected, and is ready to go on the coals!

The solar power source is getting set up to turn the spit. The outdoor kitchen is moving over to the park as I write this, and we’re setting up the big tents. I’m off to help move tables and chairs, set the tables and get ready for our gardeners, friends and neighbors to come and join in the festivities!

Haven’t RSVP’d? Doesn’t matter. There’s room for everyone at the feast, and plenty to share.

See you in the garden!

Feast of the Good Samaritan
Saturday, Oct 1
Music starts at 4PM
Dinner served at 5PM
Closing by 7PM

Volunteer chefs have gathered at Theresa’s house and are busily washing and chopping and blending and baking and seasoning and spicing in preparation for the Feast of the Good Samaritan tomorrow in the Garden.

All the veggies are from the gardens at Kilbourn Park or Clarke Street, or from the farmers markets in Riverwest or Fondy, with a few exceptions. Pie pumpkins came from the Outpost and cilantro from Riverwest Coop. But mostly the food is fresh fresh fresh and from right here!

Local, grass fed organic lamb, just delivered today. The chefs are getting ready to marinate the meat overnight. Tomorrow morning we’ll roast it over coals on a rotisserie powered by solar-charged batteries, right out in the garden.

We’ll be setting up tents and tables tomorrow starting at noon. If anyone wants to come early and help, you would be most welcome. We’ll have an outdoor kitchen set up and going, and start serving hors d’oeuvres at about 4PM. We’ll start the buffet line at about 5. Sundown is at 6:30, so we’ll try to wrap up and be out of the park by 7 or 7:30. There will be some after-parties, so plan for a full night of fun, Riverwest-style.

See you in the Garden!

Feast of the Good Samaritan
Saturday, Oct 1
Music starts at 4PM
Dinner served at 5PM
Closing by 7PM
RSVP at socialsolutionsmke@gmail.com

Come to the Feast!

Don’t forget – come to the Feast of the Good Samaritan on Saturday, Oct 1. We will be roasting a lamb and preparing delicious vegetarian dishes in an open air kitchen in the garden.

This is our Harvest Festival – we want to celebrate our third season and enjoy each other’s company.

Come and bring friends and neighbors. Bring your babies and grandmas. There will be plenty for everyone!

RSVP at socialsolutionsmke.org. We’re looking forward to seeing everyone!

This Saturday, October 1, we will be hosting the Feast of the Good Samaritan in the garden.

Each and every one of you is invited to come, celebrate the third season of the garden, and feast from the bounty of our delicious local foods. Volunteer chefs will be cooking in the garden all day. We will be roasting a lamb on a solar-powered rotisserie and creating dishes from fresh veggies right there.

Can You Bring Something?
Yes, you can. We would like to invite any of our gardeners to bring any veggies you might have left fresh from your garden beds. You can bring them to the outdoor kitchen after 10AM in the garden. If you would like to bring them earlier, just drop us an email and we will make arrangements to pick them up. (socialsolutionsmke@gmail.com)

You Are The Honored Guests
This dinner is a fundraiser, but you and all our neighbors are invited as guests. We have spent this month asking our neighbors to sponsor tables and chairs for our guests, so all our gardeners can come for free. This concept has met with a lot of success and we are raising a significant amount of money for our garden next year.

More important, though, is to communicate the idea that we have an abundant amount. Many of our gardeners have had trouble with losing vegetables this summer. We have had some good suggestions about how to address that issue.

This winter we will be working with a high school shop class to construct some signs that we will install next spring. We will also be adding some garden beds along our sidewalks that will be cared for by next year’s garden interns. These beds will be marked as “public beds” with food to be taken by anyone, with the request to leave the beds in the circles for the gardeners who care for them.

But this fall, it’s important to remember that there is enough for everyone. So let’s have a feast.

Please come! It would help if you could RSVP as soon as possible so we know who will be there. Just drop an email to socialsolutionsmke@gmail.com and let us know if you will be attending.

See you in the garden!

Feast of the Good Samaritan
Saturday, Oct 1
Music starts at 4PM
Dinner served at 5PM
Closing by 7PM
RSVP at socialsolutionsmke@gmail.com

Summer garden 2011

It’s our third season, and it’s another great one for the Community Gardens at Kilbourn Park. We’ve had our issues and adventures, and we’ve all learned some new things about city farming.

Internship Program
The 2011 Internship Program captured much of my focus in the garden this summer. This is the second year of the program, and we offered another 11-week paying internship to high school kids from the area.

We worked hard, adding additional beds, topping off existing beds, and adding wood chips to paths. Some of our most daunting challenges came from plants that we’ve come to think of as invasive garden species. The worst culprits were mint, strawberries and tomatillos. They were either perennials that spread and took over beds or very hardy re-seeders.

Our interns wanted to ask the gardeners, please, if you plant mint put it in a separate pot. Please enjoy the strawberries in the center bed. And don’t bother to plant tomatillos. There is one bed that – no matter what we do – has been taken over by them and will grow nothing else.

In addition to working in the garden this summer, our interns helped out in some other area gardens. We helped start a new garden at Pathfinders Drop In Center and learned about permaculture gardening at Concordia Gardens. We also learned what had to happen if gardeners made a mistake and put gardens where the city decides they don’t want gardens. Our interns moved three big raised strawberry beds from Snail’s Crossing to the Clarke Foods garden with wheelbarrows and hand tools. Go Team Kilbourn!

Final Expansion
We expanded our beds to 133 this year, and were able to provide beds to everyone who wanted one. Plans are currently under discussion about next year, but perhaps… PERHAPS… we are now at capacity for our garden beds.

Signs of the Times
We have had more complaints this year about people harvesting food without permission. This has been very hard for many of our gardeners, and there has been a lot of discussion about what we can do about it.

One of the proposals that I am working on is a series of signs for the garden. We have had an offer from a high school shop class to help us construct some good, sturdy, long-lasting signs. We will use them to explain what the garden is, and to invite people to come and garden with us instead of just harvesting the food that others have grown.

Another idea is to construct some garden beds along the sidewalks and have our interns tend them. The food grown there would be for anyone in the community who wants it. We could also have signs inviting people to take those crops, and asking them to leave the rest of the gardens for the people who tend them.

Big Fall Fundraiser
Watch this space, and your email inboxes, for the next post that will give details about the Feast of the Good Samaritan, the fall fundraiser we have planned.

And mark your calendars for Saturday, Oct 1. Plan to come to the garden and enjoy the fruits of our labors. More details coming soon…

Whew! What a busy summer!

I have been sadly neglectful of our blog this summer, but over the next week or so I will promise to make it up to you.

Please watch for a series of blog posts and emails as we catch up on summer happenings and plan for a big fall event! And thanks for a great season, and for your understanding as we make up for lost time.

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