The Tamworth/Erinsville Grassroots Growers will welcome all gardeners and green thumbs to talk dirt on April 12 for a special presentation at Erinsville’s St. Patrick School.
Certified organic land care professional Astrid Muschalla will be the guest speaker, offering her expertise on an often overlooked, yet essential part of gardening: composting and eco-mulching.
“The last thing we all think about when we’re eating is the soil, and we really do eat from the soil,” said Muschalla. “And if the soil is healthy, the food is going to be healthy.”
Among the techniques she’ll talk about is returning food scraps to the soil to help continue the nutrients cycle.
“In many of our gardening and farming systems, that seldom happens,” she said of placing food scraps in the soil. “The food isn’t returned to the soil and the result is the soil gets depleted. Then the soil that it’s grown in either needs lots of chemicals or it too becomes unhealthy. This talk is about being conscious of the soil and that soil health comes from feeding the soil, which is where compost and mulches come in. But not all compost and mulches are created equal.”
She’ll also talk about which techniques work best in each garden.
“A perennial garden for example needs a different soil ecology than a vegetable garden,” said Muschalla. “It’s the mulches that feed that garden ecology. It’s a new way of looking at growing food.”
With home vegetable gardens becoming more popular, so too is a focus on growing those foods as organically as possible without the use of chemicals.
“People are definitely more keen to have control over what they are getting as food to feed themselves and their family,” added Muschalla.
The April 12 talk is perfect timing as well as growers are just starting to plan their gardens ahead of the spring thaw.
Everyone is welcome to the event, which is free of charge, though donations are accepted. A seed exchange will follow the presentation. The presentation gets underway at 7 p.m.