On June 16th, John Caldwell (3700 Hearst Castle Way) gave 15 neighbors a tour of his garden, fig trees, compost bins, rain barrels, solar powered clothes dryer (also known as a clothes line), and solar panels.
John has been gardening in Texas for over 25 years, so the selected vegetables represent what grows well and tastes good right here in the Estates of Forest Creek (EFC) neighborhood.
The harvest includes:
- Amish paste & Roma tomatoes (very good for canning)
- Red bell peppers
John saves the seeds from his best plants each year and uses them the next year.
The melons are grown on wire fences so the leaves don’t crowd each other for sunlight. Cotton cloth is used as support hammocks so the 10 pound melons won’t fall down. John’s best harvest, so far, was 560 pounds!
The two fig trees are about 15 years old and are about 60’ wide. They are cut in a hedge shape so the figs will be easier to pick.
The regular compost bin gets apple cores, banana peels, and coffee grounds from Starbucks. In fall 2015, John collected over 100 bags of leaves from the neighborhood and created a compost bin about 7’ x 7’ by 3’. It should be done composting by spring 2017.
There are two rain barrels. Water from the 50 gallon barrel is siphoned into the pool as needed. The 90 gallon barrel is used to water plants. The clothes line works well and has never had a service call. The solar panels also work well. The Caldwell home is on the Solar House Tour in the Fall.
At the end of the garden tour, each person got fresh vegetables and a small tomato plant in a pot (ready for planting!) to take home.
Thanks again to John Caldwell for hosting such an interesting and enjoyable EFC community activity!