What the heck grows in a Summit County garden?
summit daily news
SILVERTHORNE – To learn how to extend Summit County’s lamentably short growing season, Silvana’s Community Gardens is gearing up for three years of experimental research – starting now. Five new Silverthorne garden beds will be dedicated to the process this spring.
“The goals of the experimental beds at Silvana’s Community Gardens are to develop a variety of experiments that can change each year to focus on the growing season and expanding its length – approximately 28 frost-free days in Dillon,” said garden co-chair Marie Orlin. “Results are to be used to provide data for individual growers in the county and beyond.”
According to Orlin, gardeners will use various affordable options to demonstrate ways to lengthen the local growing season. Each experimental bed plot holder will plant the same number of snow peas, tomatoes and basil starts. Then, a “treatment” will be assigned – such as gallon water jugs, a “Wall O Water,” row covers, organic fertilizer, chemical fertilizer, frost blankets or black plastic covering – and results will be recorded.
“Weather conditions, such as high and low temperatures and precipitation, will be tracked,” Orlin added.
Garden spokeswoman Maggie Butler said details regarding the experimental beds are still being nailed down, but youth groups – like Mountain Mentors and SOS – have committed to help.
“We will need to schedule a meeting for SOS and the other the participants in the experimental portion within the next month,” she said. “We are going to have a great mix of organizations involved in this project.”
Volunteers are still needed for garden work days scheduled for May 5 and 8 – participants can expect heavy lifting and landscaping.
“Later this summer we also expect to build a bridge and possibly a shed,” Butler said.
Silvana’s garden beds are currently all rented out for the season, but interested locals can sign up for the waiting list.
For more information about Silvana’s Community Gardens in Silverthorne, visit http://www.silvanascommunitygardens.org.
Caitlin Row can be reached at (970) 668-4633 or at email@example.com.
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