DCM Schedule of Events 2015

Next mob:

May 16:

On May 16, we’ll be lending a helping hand to the Kitchen on the Green (KotG) at Expo Recreation Center, an organization dedicated to helping middle and high school students and their parents learn about healthy eating by cooking from an on-site vegetable and herb garden.

The KotG program is located across the street from a school where 80% of students are on free or reduced lunch, and has a partnership with the food bank where they hand out snacks to students after each school day and lunch in the summer.  This garden was in its first year of production last year and the vegetables grown were used in cooking classes, while the herb garden has been in production for several years. This garden is a great demonstration garden to show people in the neighborhood what it is possible to grow in a small area.

We’ll be helping the KotG folks to plant this garden for the coming season, as well as doing light-duty gardening tasks. Bring your gardening gloves, and also extra trowels would be welcome.

Please bring your kids (7+ can participate on their own, younger kids need to be supervised), as this is a super kid-friendly mob, and there is a playground next to the garden, AND we will be making old-fashioned, home made, hand cranked ice cream!

As always, after we work together, we’ll sit down and break bread together, as KotG will be providing pasta (including a gluten-free option) and a healthy salad for lunch.Leashed and friendly dogs are welcome, too.

Register at EventBrite or via the Greater Denver Urban Homesteading Meetup group.

Past mobs:

April 12: We start the crop mob season in style, at Ekar Farm, where we’ll be building the reflection patio we didn’t get to build last year:

Ekar has always dreamed of a place out in the middle of the farm to sit and quietly reflect on the importance of organic food accessibility, food equality, and the community value of all urban farms. Participants will construct a 105 square foot brick patio by digging out the area, filling the hole with gravel and sand, and then placing bricks in a pattern.

This is your chance to help Ekar Farm with its mission of growing food on an urban farm to feed the hungry. In 2014, Ekar donated over 11,000 pounds of food for that purpose! This is only possible through the volunteer efforts of people like YOU!

This is an amazing organization, worthy of your attention and effort, and you’ll have the opportunity to work side by side with like minded folks on a project that will yield benefits to our community for years to come, and then to share a hot sit down lunch with your fellows, as we build community the old fashioned way: by working and eating together!

Children are very welcome, though need to be supervised as this will be a construction project using shovels, wheelbarrows, etc.

For our shared meal, Ekar will be providing Vegetarian/Vegan/Kosher/Non-Meat options.

Questions? Contact us at denvercropmob@gmail.com

Please register here.

April 25:

Denver Crop Mob has got a terrific way for you to celebrate Earth Day this year: come support the Chadash Community as we help them build their Sanctuary Garden!

This 3/4 acre site is nestled in the heart of the diverse and under-served community of ‘original’ Aurora (a food desert and part of the Piton Foundation’s Children’s Corridor). The Sanctuary Garden includes communal and individual gardens, an edible orchard, medicinal herb garden, children’s peace garden, fair-trade market, and will offer horticultural therapy programs as well as social and educational events. This is a garden that will be tended and harvested communally, with all crops shared among participants, local food pantries, and community agencies.

Your presence and hard work will help make this vision real, and set the stage such that the Chadash Community can begin to welcome folks, cultivate community, and grow food for/with many who struggle every day to feed their families. Your gift of labor is the ‘seed energy’ that will nourish many spirits and bodies!

You’re also invited to bring a cup of soil, pebble, or stone from “the place where you dwell” to leave in the garden as symbol and reminder of your presence and gift to the co-creation of the Chadash Sanctuary Garden.

Our tasks will include clearing grass and weeds in preparation for, and then building and compost-prepping several in-ground garden beds, as well as sheet mulching paths and doing early spring planting. Bring your gardening gloves and your favorite trowel! We’re also asking folks to bring wheelbarrows, shovels and hoes if convenient.As per usual, bring your water bottles and suitable sun protection.

Children are more than welcome, and should be supervised as roto-tillers will be in operation at times.

Lunch will, as always, be served around noon, and will include authentic culturally diverse dishes (South/Central American/Burmese) prepared by folks from Chadash and Project Worthmore community members.

Additionally, a “Taste & Talk” community meal and conversation welcoming neighbors and growing partners (including folks from Conservation Colorado and Project Worthmore) will follow, and all crop mob participants are welcome.

Please register at EventBrite or via the Greater Denver Urban Homesteading Meetup group.

 

 

PRIOR YEAR CROP MOBS

Fall 2014 Crop Mobs

Sept 14:

Fall means harvest time! At this mob, we’ll be harvesting all manner of vegetative goodies for donation to the hungry.

Please do bring your children – we think this would be a terrific opportunity for them to enjoy learning about how food is grown (Farmer Jay will of course be on hand) and also about the important issues of food security and food justice, for which Ekar is such an effective and eloquent advocate! Dogs are probably best left home this time, as they cannot be allowed in the growing area where we will be working.

Tools will be provided, so just bring your work gloves, plenty of water for hydration, sun protection as desired, along with a smile and a thirst for community!

Sept 27:

Join us on Saturday September 27 at the Living Systems Institute to help build their new plant propagation project. The goal of this project is to change the way landscaping is done in Denver, to a model that relies on native plants to regenerate the short grass prairie ecosystems that evolved here. As opposed to many common landscape plants that demand large amounts of water and attention to survive, native plants evolved to thrive here without human intervention, and those native plants attract the insects, birds and other ecosystem participants that live and thrive here.Our task will be to “sheet mulch” the area to be used for planting the various native species that constitute the vegetative foundation for such ecosystems. Sheet mulching is a layered technique for building soil from the ground up using freely available materials that would otherwise find their way into the waste stream. For more on sheet mulching, see
http://www.chelseagreen.com/content/9-simple-steps-to-sheet-mulching/As always, a warm, sit-down lunch will follow the work!Kids and dogs are welcome. Please bring work gloves, water and any desired sun protection.

Questions? Contact us at denvercropmob@gmail.com

Spring 2014 mobs:

March 29: Waste Farmers – appropriate that, for our first of 2014, we visit our good friends at Waste Farmers, scene of several past crop mobs. Waste Farmers is a next-generation, sustainable agricultural company focused on helping humanity meet current and future food demands while decreasing agriculture’s environmental footprint. You can read more about this outstanding Colorado success story here.

While checking on the status of the hugelkulturs we built at Waste Farmers last year, we will build and install a new set of raised beds, fill ‘em with soil and Maxfield’s specialty soil enhancers, plant ‘em with spring crops, and we’ll also build a chicken coop.

April 12: The GEOS Development is a planned community like no other in Denver. Sustainability and eco-housing enthusiasts in particular will want to be on board for this mob. Billed as Colorado’s first ‘geosolar’ development, this new eco-community is an experiment in radical sustainability, featuring net-zero energy homes and native landscaping with a focus on the health and well being of its inhabitants and the natural systems that support them. More about the development here. In alignment with the principles this community espouses, we’ll be creating a large sheet mulched gardening area alongside with several of the future homeowners. Sheet mulching (aka lasagna gardening) is a permaculture no-till technique that builds soil from the ground up via layers of organic materials. This will be the largest scale sheet mulch project that Denver Crop Mob has yet undertaken.

April 26: This will be a Saturday to remember. Not only are we privileged to be holding a crop mob for a much loved local institution, Aleece And Kris Raw‘s ‘The Garden,’ but this crop mob will be filmed as part of the One Day in Denver project. Note that we’ll be asking participants to sign a waiver so you can be included in the documentary TV series that results!

Our host farmer, the Garden, is a community food and events center in North Park Hill that is managed, funded and supported by the members that use it and the community it serves. For people who want to eat good food while helping others do it too, they offer opportunities to connect, share, learn and grow. Their organically grown gardens serve the Sunshine Food Project food buying club, Mo Betta Green farmers market, a variety of farm-to-table events, cooking classes and workshops, neighborhood food pantries and more.

We’ll be helping Aleece and Kris with various projects around the Garden, including building, conditioning and planting straw bale gardens, helping with their first hops project, painting the chicken coop and more. This will be a fun day with relatively light-duty work and a fantastic meal provided.

May 10: Farmer Tim’s Tumbarello Farm is our friend (and crop mob veteran) Tim Engel’s farm. Tim grows food for the Highland’s Old Major restaurant (as well as for our very own Grow Local Colorado’s food pantry program), and this works to OUR advantage, as the sit down meal for this mob will feature a full spread from Old Major: a pig roast with all the fixin’s – and plenty of beer to wash down this hearty fare. That’s right – it’s gonna be a party! But first – we work! In this case, Farmer Tim will be teaching us Israeli gardening and farm-irrigation techniques, as we’ll be planting (corn, potatoes, squash, pie pumpkins, cucumbers, etc) and laying down irrigation lines. If you enjoy celebrating with good food and good beer after a hard half-day’s work among friends old AND new, in pursuit of a vibrant and just local economy, well, this is clearly the mob for you!

May 24: Volunteers for Outdoor Colorado [VOC] will be driving this crop mob, on behalf of Magpie Farms (an urban farm in Arvada) under the Denver Public Libraries ‘Fresh City Life’ program. We’ll be sheet mulching a large area for this mob, based on the success of last year’s sheet mulching crop mob. David Braden, local permaculture guru and head honcho of the Living Systems Institute, will be directing the installation, as well as educating us on the benefits of this no-till, no-weed permaculture method. If you have not experienced sheet mulching, this is a vital technology for the future of growing food, and this would be a terrific opportunity to learn about it.

Fall 2013 Crop Mobs:

October 19 – for the last crop mob of the year, it’s fitting that we visit an old friend, who we haven’t yet seen this year: H2Organics, an organic greenhouse and farm up in Arvada. They got hammered pretty hard by the rains this fall, so we’ll be helping Jeremy and the crew to clear the fields and then to plant a winter garlic crop.

September 28 – We’ll be revisiting our friends at Waste Farmers for this crop mob, and we have some good times on tap for sure. Recall that our spring crop mob here installed a hugelkultur mound as well as building some raised beds – we’ll be checking the status on those projects, AND doing a bunch more. This time around, tasks include enhancing the hugelkulturs with poly tunnels, building cold frames (a type of season extender), prepping a chicken coop area, pouring some cement, and building a chicken tractor, among others! This is one you don’t wanna miss, and is also a good one to which to bring interested (supervised!) kids! 

September 14th – We’re gonna be helping out everybody’s favorite non-profit greenhouse, local food and permaculture educator – the GrowHaus!! This is one you do NOT want to miss!  We’ll be installing a 150 sq ft tropical permaculture demonstration garden, one of many, along with numerous other tasks (TBD), which may include laying tubing for a radiant floor heating system, laying pavers, prepping for a mobile test kitchen, etc. A fun – and educational – time is sure to be had by all! 

Spring 2013 mobs:

March 16 – Denver Crop Mob at Infinite Monkey Winery – help fill raised beds with compost in preparation for the gardening season. Produce will be served at Old Major Restaurant.

April 6 – Our friends at Waste Farmers will be hosting this crop mob that will include numerous terrific learning activities – we’ll be helping to build raised beds that will be used to grow veggie and composting crops, AND we’ll be using Sepp Holzer’s hugelkultur technique to establish the beginnings of a food forest. Very exciting! Due to the valuable educational potential, this would be an ideal mob for older children to attend!

April 27 – Fresh City Life offers adult cultural programming, such as gardening classes, through the Denver Public Library. On this particular project, which will include clearing, soil prep, and bed prep, the garden being prepared will act as a lab space for future FCL gardening classes.

May 18 – The SAGE Project is a 6700 square foot CoExist Community Garden growing food for/with the hungry and homeless. The entire garden is engaged collaboratively and all produce is shared with those who are hungry in body and/or spirit. We’ll be reconfiguring and building raised beds and doing some planting – this is a very worthy cause that can use your support!!

June 2 – The ever popular EKAR Farms is a charity based non-profit urban farm on 2 acres. Their mission, to boldly grow where no man has…err, that is, to grow fruits and veggies in a sustainable fashion, to build community, and to provide experiential educational opportunities. This year EKAR plans to grow and donate 8,000 pounds of organic produce to various local food pantries. Mobbers will help with seed and soil work – we’ll be planting tomatoes, peppers and eggplant, among other tasks. (Note that the Ekatr crop mob is currently full with a waiting list – why not register for the June 8 mob, at Moondog? Details just below…)

June 8 – Join us as we lend a hand to Produce Denver at Moondog Farm, a collaboration between DHA, Queen Anne Inn, Mercury Cafe and Produce Denver. Mercury Café grows herbs and fruit for the restaurant, Produce Denver grows food for restaurants and Queen Anne uses the produce for breakfasts and for the Five Points Fermentation Company. We’ll be helping out by planting, weeding, suckering tomatoes, trellising tomatoes, planting flowers, mulching, etc. Some serious gardening action goin’ down, people! Plan on getting dirty with us as we build community from the soil up!

June 29 – Calling all crop mob devotees, and Denver urban ag enthusiasts! We need your help!!

We’ve scheduled a special crop mob, last of the summer season, for next Saturday, June 29. We’ll be helping to bring the Winona Ct. Farmette (aka Dana Miller’s place) back into production. The produce from the garden of this local legend goes to a local food bank to serve the hungry.

Many of us know Dana as a co-director of Grow Local Colorado, an organization that is as unceasing as it is effective in its efforts to provide fresh food to those most in need of it. She needs our help, so come one, come all, spend a couple of hours helping to weed, clean up, and generally bring things under control, and then join us for brunch.

This will be an early, and a short crop mob – we’ll start at 7:30, and be sitting down to brunch at 9:30, which include yield from the garden, and (for the more courageous among us) a salad made from edible weeds! Included will be a mini-seminar on these nutritious and abundant plants.

Bring gloves and pruning shears if ya got ‘em!

Here’s what we did in 2012.

  • April 7 – created a garden from scratch at The Garden, a new restaurant located at 3435 Albion in Park Hill. The Garden Family wants to grow much of the produce they will use in the kitchen.
  • May 5 – helped South Metro Urban Farmer’s kick off their 2nd season of Neighborhood Supported Agriculture by planting seeds and seedlings in the heart of old Littleton.
  • May 19 – helped Mo’ Betta Green Marketplace create an urban food forest using native medicinal and food plants at this location in Five Points.
  • June 10 – at H2Organic Farms, we planted out tomatoes, eggplants and peppers in the 1/4 acre surrounding their greenhouse in Arvada and began building a produce stand.
  • June 20 – Mid-Summer Night at Produce Denver at Denver ‘s Sustainability Park, located at 2500 Lawrence Street. Lots of planting of cukes, squash and tomatoes!
  • June 24 – returned to Ekar Farm to complete a variety of chores including revamping an old herb garden
  • August 4 – worked at Sprout City Farms, located at Denver Green School and one of 3 pilot farming projects on DPS acreage.
  • Sept 29 – Star Acre Farms Harvesting was the task of the day. Tomatoes, pumpkins, peppers, squash. Lots of great food, and a few sore muscles.