What to grow?
The Sitric Compost Garden is probably the smallest Community garden in Dublin. Over the years we have experimented with growing many different things in our confined, but highly visible location. The first few years, driven by a flush of enthusiasm, we tried everything: tomatoes, cucumbers, lettuce, beets, swiss chard, potatoes, broccoli, kale, cabbage, carrots, peas, beans, aubergines, amaranth…you name it!
Later we decided to GROW UP, experimenting with layering and growing vertically because we had created so much fertility in our compost demonstrations and had so little space: low growing lettuces and herbs underneath fruit trees and sunflowers, strawberries underneath currant bushes, with a wall of climbing beans, tomatoes and cucumbers protruding above from behind everything again…
Last year we focused our time on the cultivation of our herb garden and a range of exotic salad greens which are something everyone in the neighbourhood can benefit from. We also grew Blue Danube, a ‘sarpo’ naturally blight resistant potato variety, as part of SPUDS project, along the railings, giving our community based researach maximum PR potential.
This year we will continue to refine and develop our herb garden and will taunt the blight once more with more naturally resistant varieties as part of SPUDS 2013 researach. We have also collected some exotic relatives of the potato that originate in South America but were brought to this area of the world by community growers in the UK then collected and documented by Garden Organic UK’s wonderful ‘Sewing New Seeds’ project: Yacon & Oca (tubers), Tomatillos &Tamarillos (tomato-like plants) and an African Perennial Kale.
One very exciting development this year will be the educational aquaponics system that DIT Product Engineering Students are designing for the garden which we plan to build this spring. This will add fish to our portfolio! We look forward to collaborating with our friends at the Chocolate Factory Urban Rooftop Farm on this one!
An advantage of our ‘skinny’ street side location is the easy exposure it provides to the community. You will be able to monitor our progress daily through the bars!
We welcome suggestions of what you would like to watch grow on the street! Why not put your suggestions in our forum thread under the Sitric Compost Community Garden: ‘What to grow?’