We thinned out so many fully grown banana plants that I thought they would overwhelm our compost systems. Reluctantly I gave the order, Prepare them for the green bins!
Bagged banana plants
Fortunately, the green bins were full, so every time I passed the bags of plants, I sensed their plea: Don’t sent us away. We’ll help the compost. We’re full of water.
Water leaked from banana plants through the hole in the wheelbarrow until I positioned it over the compost.
And so they changed my mind. I’m chopping them up and adding them to the bottom 2 layers of both the in-ground-lasagna-style compost and the hot compost.
Water thrifty plants get “high” on 2017’s lusty rainfall.
YAY! After thinning out banana suckers and composting, two trees promise bananas.
We’re trellising some thorny plants along the fence to deter fence-climbing.
Pedestrians from many cultures stop to ask about plants and talk about the gardens they have or used to have in their native countries. Along the fence I like to plant crops – like these peas – plus herbs and flowers that they can harvest from the sidewalk.
In the courtyard
Newly mulched path will help to conserve moisture – make the effects of this rain last longer – and eventually break down to feed the soil.
Draught tolerant plants added to “small fruit” garden. Experimenting with clover as a living mulch
Goji berries & weeping mulberry and their new signs.
Parsley and lettuce are easily accessible for community to harvest.
Yolanda has planted papayas next to greywater outlets.
potatoes & fava beans planted around olla to slowly water plants during dry season.
Papaya, banana and new grape vine against south facing wall will also help shade this apartment.
KCRW’s “Press Play with Madeleine Brand” gave L.A. Eco-Village a nice plug in this fascinating article by Bonnie Johnson about the history of these SoCal utopian communities. Thanks to our long time CRSP Board President and architect Ian McIlvaine. for catching it. Read the article or listen to the 12 minute magazine piece here.
I was delighted to be interviewed by KPCC’s Al Martinez on “Take Two” last week. You can hear the seven minute piece here:
Let us know what you think. Thanks for listening. Lois
by Rebecca L.
New species found in L.A. Eco-Village
What is the Bioscan project?
The Bioscan project is an outgrowth of looking in my backyard and seeing what I found there that was so interesting and unexpectedly diverse, and we started looking at other people’s backyards and finding things that were crazy and diverse, species from different continents such as Africa, Europe and species that were new to science, that had never been described before. We say the need to survey, the need to record what’s in LA related to the density of housing, income level of an area, types of plants and whether or not there is watering, location, how close to other natural areas. We call these the variables of urbanization and these things effect the biodiversity that surrounds us. So as an outgrowth of looking into my backyard we decided to look into 30 backyards across a wide swath of Los Angeles from the Natural History Museum (NHM) north to the Verdugo Mountains and record plant life, hard scape, etc.
We use the recipe for Apple Pan Dowdy from my ancient Fannie Farmer cookbook.
Edy does the math to double the recipe and makes the cottage pudding topping.
Apples, raspberries and concord grapes from our gardens are baked in the solar oven with cinnamon, nutmeg & ginger and placed in the bottom of the pan.
It took about 1 1/2 hours to bake.
Edy carries his creation to the art studio opening
- 1/4 cup butter
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 cup water
- 2 1/4 cup flour
- 4 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 medium apples, peeled, if desired, and sliced
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
Heat the oven to 350 degrees.
Arrange the sliced apples in a greased pie pan or 9-by-9-inch baking dish. cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger
In a large mixing bowl, cream the butter and sugar well. Add the egg, and beat until smooth. In a separate mixing bowl, combine the flour, baking powder and salt, and add this to the butter-sugar-egg mix, alternating with the milk. Spoon this batter over the apple slices. Bake for about 30 minutes or until the cake is golden brown. Cool slightly before cutting.