OKCG gardeners are a diverse community: Seniors and families with young children, native Durangotangs and newcomers, seasoned gardeners and first-time growers. Everyone is welcome at OKCG!
Members of the Ohana Kuleana Community Garden enjoy many benefits. Among them are the opportunity to connect with nature in a lush pastoral setting located in a beautiful mountain valley; to grow their own nutritious organic food; to sharpen both their agricultural skills and to learn the best methods for preserving their produce, and to become a vital part of a community actively involved in fostering healthy living and sustainable environmental practices.
Use mulch, row cover and hoop houses to protect your plants -- wind and low humidity in our mountain climate require extra measures to keep our plants moist and healthy.
Be prepared to plant and re-plant; some of our plant babies inevitably die and go to compost; they are replaced with more seeds and starts, some of which will surprise us with lush growth and bounty.
Share the wealth; when you do succeed, share both your techniques and the produce with your OK neighbors so they can learn from your success.
Help keep track of how many pounds of produce we harvest this season. In previous seasons we have harvested 1,500 lbs! Wow!
This tracking helps us receive grants since many of the benefits of community gardens are hard to quantify (e.g. building relationships, learning new skills, etc) and this is one number that gives an idea as to how much fresh produce we are eating. Grant money helps fund projects like the Education Pavilion and the Food Forest.
Here's how to use the harvest tracking system!
Harvest your bountiful produce.
Weigh your produce with the scale by the main gate by putting it into the hanging bucket.
Inside the black clipboard, record the weight exactly what the scale says, garden manager will subtract the weight of the bucket later.
Record the types of produce harvested.
Enjoy your delicious, community-garden-grown produce!
Volunteer Hours Tracking
Members of the OK Community Garden are required to contribute four hours per month to maintain and improve the OK common areas, including the entryway, the pathways and the food forest berms. Two hours of the volunteer requirement are fulfilled by participating in the monthly workday held every third Saturday of the month, May through October. Three other weekly workdays also provide volunteer opportunities. Volunteer hours are logged on a timesheet on a bulletin board located by OK's south gate.
One of the beautiful parts of Ohana Kuleana Community Garden is that experienced gardeners informally provide support and encouragement to new "green gardeners.” Many novice gardeners are excited to experience the magic of growing and eating their own food, but are unsure of what goes into the alchemy of turning a tiny seed into a delicious vegetable.
OKCG gardeners help each other navigate this new adventure by sharing their own gardening experiences, helping each other find the right resources to answer questions, and sharing the triumphs and tribulations during the growing season through advice or hands-on help. Neighbors use their knowledge and connections to learn more together.
The location of Ohana Kuleana Community Garden adjacent to Riverview Elementary School creates a unique learning opportunity for students enrolled there. The school science teacher has incorporated six raised garden beds and a hoop house at OK that provide field demonstrations to classroom teachings.
The students also learn from other features at the OK garden -- the herb and garlic beds, the food forest, the water harvesting system and the compost piles, including a worm composting system.
OK schedules community events that feature educational seminars and every season there's an Open House where the entire community gets to share in the organic bounty and enjoy the lush beauty of the OK agricultural oasis. Conversely, OK members often attend community gardening lectures and events together and bring what they learn back to the garden.
OK also has a small amphitheater with raised seating and a stage area that enable the community to enjoy small productions, lectures and concerts. Look for announcements of these events on this website and other media outlets.