Any urban farmer will tell you they do not prefer to dig down into the soil. Even at our schools with edible education in mind, do they often times find themselves cumbersome by the task of tilling clay soils.
At Buckeye Farms and Groundz Recycling, it’s no different. As you can see, the formerly vacant lot (and part of Buckeye Farms) is overgrown with Queen Anne’s lace, tassel weed, thistle, grasses, assorted urban weeds common on vacant lots, and cement. This week we added our 10 newest feet of organic crop row (See photo above). Our goal for this lot is 500 new organic feet, so we are almost 10% there. From that point, we will cycle through the whole farm’s crop rows with organic soil residuals from our composting operation.
With 7,187 pounds of coffee grounds we recycled from Dunkin Donuts in Parma Heights, Ohio including last weekend’s waste load of 303 pounds, we expanded into our 2nd 100 square foot block. Groundz starts with a 5-7 inch layer of Buckeye Farms’ own organic waste; a combination of cornstalks, chili and bell pepper plants, cosmos, marigold, basil, mulch. The coffee grounds are then added, and topped with Groundz blend of what we consider the “fluff” factor, that makes the soil very light and soft.
The bottom 3-4 inches, Groundz will keep so Green Corps, the Garden’s inner city youth employment program since 1996, will grow crops in; the ground layer of organic and local food, especially their famous salsa, which is sold at Heinen’s grocery stores and urban farmers markets.
The rest of the finished compost is for sale for Groundz and Botanical Garden customers. Save your buckets for our refills on “pick your own compost” at our farms. At Buckeye Farms’ and Maggie’s Farm we will have compost ready for your spring plantings. Contact Green Corps or Maggie’s Farm for more information about how you can get some organic soil, packaged exclusively in our 5-gallon buckets.