HOUSTON - The winter crops are planted. At present, the new vegetable shoots have carpeted the rows.
Within a couple of weeks, the thinning out process will begin.
In order for these plants to reach their fullest, each sprout must have enough space to bush out. When this process is complete, we're well on our way to a healthy garden.
The weather here is still hot, which means that we will still have to water occasionally. Until the dew or frosts become thick enough, a periodic watering is needed.
This season, the local All African People’s Development and Empowerment Project (AAPDEP) chapter decided to plant an abundance of large leaf mustard greens. These greens can be sold at the One Africa! One Nation! Marketplace that are in the plans. Thus far, the idea of planting a big mustard crop is showing success.
AAPDEP member James Coleman's sugar beets are sprouting in perfect harmony with the kale and broccoli. Brother Omowale shocked us with another surprise - winter okra - and it is growing in leaps and bounds.
Our spinach is almost a no-show, with only a few sprouts showing up. I credit this to this strange unseasonal weather, global warming, if you will. Lots of winter vegetables will suffer unless we stay on top of their nourishing and growth process.
There is also corn, which was randomly sown in the rows. The corn has sprouted sparsely amongst the rows.
Big garage sale and barbeque
On Saturday, September 22, and the following Sunday, we sponsored a big garage sale and barbeque as a fundraiser.
Organizing a garage sale really ties us into the community. We may have this as an ongoing fundraising project.
People in the community are eager to donate clothes, tools, electrical appliances and just a wide variety of items that they have clogging up their homes.
We have made a call for people to donate to the garage sale and they are answering that call with good, useful items that members of our community can definitely use.
This week, our garage sale will be set up flea market style on the busy intersection of Collingsworth and Russell Streets in the heart of Houston's 5th Ward.
The fundraiser will help us buy seeds and maintain the upkeep of the garden, in addition to helping us to get to the 3rd Annual AAPDEP Conference scheduled for Washington, D.C. on October 13 and 14.
After three years, we are still doing some things by trial and error. Our membership always learns from each planting throughout the year.
Who knows, Omowale Kefing just might have a green thumb if that okra grows.
Brother John Everette has taken the job of building the compost bins, which is fermenting nicely.
We are in need of a lot more refuse and will perhaps work toward obtaining more in the next week or two. We will have the compost situation solved before the spring planting.
So keep your eyes and ears open for news from Houston's AAPDEP's 5th Ward Community Garden.
To make contributions of seeds, tools, money, etc., send to:
AAPDEP 5th Ward Community Garden
3707 Brill Street, Houston, Texas 77026