18 February 2010


After three years on a waiting list, I finally got a plot in a neighborhood community garden!  The plots in this garden are small, but it's a brand new, raised bed in a nice, small, sunny garden attached to a Mission District mini-park a couple of blocks from me.

The other gardeners I've met are great, and small world that San Francisco is, among them is the father of David's son's brother, his partner, my ex-co-worker's ex-roommate, and a participant in a green planning "salon" that I once moderated.


My plan is to grow vegetables that need more room, sun, warmth, and soil in my garden plot, and keep growing lettuces, greens, and herbs in my kitchen and back porch windowboxes.  

That said, in this cooler weather I decided to do a first crop of lettuces and greens in my new bed, using up half-used packets of seeds, and overseeding because germination may be lower because the seeds are older.

Lettuce and greens seeds are planted very shallow, so I decided to build a cage to protect them from the many birds in the park.  I can keep it on while the seedlings are small, and re-use it for any sowings or small transplants.  I used wire snips to cut and shape the cage from 4-foot width chicken wire.

I also attached some screening to the top of the cage, to diffuse the heavy rain we're expecting, so the seeds wouldn't wash away.  And I can leave it on as a shade cloth for the tender lettuces. 

One of the longtime gardeners clued me in to the snails that like to hide out under the top edges of the beds, so I decided to staple some copper strapping over the outer edges; the theory is that the small electrical charge in the copper deters snails and slugs.  The strapping is much cheaper than the copper tape sold for this purpose.

It felt good to be digging in the dirt again, building things, and planting. Stay tuned as the plot thickens...I'm hoping to document here the growing, harvesting, cooking, and eating of vegetables from the garden. 


  1. we are having a snail/slug problem and i'm wondering where you got your copper strapping? the regular copper tape is so expensive!

  2. I found it @ Cole hardware in SF, but I'm assuming an Ace, Home Depot, Lowe's wd have; bc it's copper I also assume it has a plumbing, H2O, outdoor application, so I'd try those depts. FYI: it's wkd quite well: only 2 snailsthis season vs handfuls each week 4 some gdners; it's thicker than tape, so needs enthusiastic staple-gunning & longer staples 2 install.

    And thx 4 the comment/request/nudge!


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