Hello again, Friends!
At the close of our last report, front porch President Andy Mueller had just returned from Nepal, having helped secure SLGC's new Project Manager, Manik Tuladhar, to lead completion of the garden's physical infrastructure and to support all aspects of SLGC operations.
Thus far, Manik has built strong rapport with Garden Manager Kali and Coordinators Kamala, Mali, and Chirimaya. Even amidst the heavy monsoon season, SLGC is beginning to really take root.
Thanks to Manik's weekly updates, staying abreast of the daily activities at SLGC is simple, even though we ourselves are 12,000 miles away. Some of the larger task items that have been completed since our last update include the following:
Testing and amending soil in preparation to begin planting in the greenhouse
Constructing washing station sink & work surface, along with the seedling nursery prep tables
Coordinating final plumbing work to engage the washing station and seedling nursery
Finalizing plans to build fencing along demonstration garden border
Illuminating demonstration garden with solar powered security lights
Outfitting the garden shed's interior with shelving, storage, and garden tool hooks
Upgrading seed storage containers and process for longer-term seed preservation
Removing vine vegetable plants from upper terraces and replanting with red clover cover crop for nitrogen-fixing
Identifying viable solution for removing large, felled trees from the terraces and utilizing the wood for other purposes
Engaging with potential gardeners from the upper villages to heighten awareness and benefits of community gardening
Establishing connections with other organic and permaculture farmers in the region to build a network of resources
Exciting new news!
Our collaborative efforts with KRMEF are resulting in steady progress at SLGC. Along with the ongoing work in the gardens, we learned recently that KRMEF secured a donation to purchase the land for the demonstration garden. Even though the land's price was quite dear, this is a landmark event ensuring both the freedom to use the land as the foundation wishes and the longevity of the demonstration garden itself. Given its proximity to the Waldorf-inspired Ankuran School and the community's center, use of this area as an outdoor classroom for students and community members alike may well serve to strengthen the cooperative gardening program as a whole.
In the coming months, front porch and the Ankuran School teachers will be co-creating curricula for Ankuran students. Through gardening, students are exposed to concepts in math, science, critical thinking, physical activity, art, and beyond as they strengthen their connection to the earth and the natural processes of growing food. Socio-emotional development is enhanced as students learn to care for living organisms, collaborate with classmates, strengthen communication, and learn new skills—all of which can contribute to self-efficacy and interdependence.
A community's resilience carries strong associations with the health of its children, and we are looking forward to helping cultivate land stewardship and biodynamic farming practices among the next generation.
We at front porch thank you again for your continued support and invite you to keep abreast of SLGC's growth in the coming months.
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Andy, Mae, & front porch and KRMEF teams
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