Saturday, September 21, 2013

Learn Gardening for Free; Earn a T-shirt

         Gardening is keeping order in the landscape, and it is mostly killing disorderly plants, otherwise known as weeding.  This distinguishes gardening from mere landscape maintenance, which really doesn’t maintain property well.  

One can garden by weeding alone; everything else is optional.   Mulching stops a lot of weeds, but it never stops them all.  Mowing annuals and many perennial weeds doesn’t stop them from going to seed under the mower blades.   In the end, the only way to get rid of weeds is to weed them out. 

Our county and city parks, and our city generally, could use a lot more gardening.  Our landscape maintenance crews often don’t include any weeders, at least partly because the contractors can’t find enough people willing to do it. 

It may be that they are looking for the wrong kind of employee.  The no-weeder crews employ a lot of tall, broad-shouldered young men who are not built for stoop work; they often don’t even pick up the litter before mowing.  We need more obsessive-compulsive short people, particularly women, to garden Grants Pass and allow us all to obey our weed code, which forbids allowing weeds to mature (flower) and go to seed.

Our code is a guide; we can stop weeds from going to seed by pulling them as they flower.  At the point of flowering, most weeds become easier to see and pull or cut out of the ground, and it stops them from going to seed and spreading. 

People in need of employment can, with minimal tools and a little training, go from door to door, asking owners of weedy properties if they’d like their weeds pulled.  Many would be happy to be asked; the rest need a clue.   You can easily go into the weeding business for yourself and work your way up to a full-service gardening business.  Or, with training, you can find work on a crew and get a regular paycheck.

Weeding has its tricks.  Different weeds and types of weeds have different easiest ways to kill them.  Thirteen years of professional gardening have taught me many of these tricks.

Therefore, Garden Grants Pass is starting free weeding classes in Greenwood Dog Park, 1200 SW Greenwood Avenue, on Friday mornings from 8:00 to 9:00 AM, and at Schroeder Park’s Dog Park, 605 Schroeder Lane, at the north end of Willow Lane, on Saturdays from 8:00 to 9:00 AM. 

Do 6 classes, and you earn a T-shirt with “Garden Grants Pass” on the front and “Greenwood Weeders” or “Schroeder Weeders” on the back.  You can earn a year’s Josephine County Park pass for 8 hours of work in its parks, including weeding Schroeder.  Please come to my classes and pick my brain.

Revised 7-18-2013  Published on Linked In.
Rycke Brown, Natural Gardener        541-955-9040