May 14, 2015

May workday report

At the community workday on May 9, volunteers planted a bunch of new plants provided by Rec and Park for both the rain garden and the plots surrounding the children's playground. Two years after initial planting, our rain garden appears more filled in as the plants mature and we continue to bring new plants in. 

Guillermo organized a special snack for us at breaktime: organic fruit and juice smoothies blended by bicycle. Delicious, and healthy, with second servings for all! 

Rain garden filling in

Anna and Guillermo at work on our snack
Conversations at the park often turn to California's extreme drought, and how to manage parklands to reduce water use. As watering is cutback further, some sections of the park have turned dry. To protect the soil from drying out completely and blowing away, one tool in the toolbox is to amend the soil and spread woodchips. Piles of compost fines and wood chips, sourced from the compost yard in Golden Gate Park, were situated around the Panhandle, and Guillermo explained that he would have help from the sixth graders of San Francisco Day School during the coming week to spread the material around the trees of the Panhandle. The timing is excellent, since a couple hundred thousand of runners, walkers, and partyers will be out in the Panhandle for Bay to Breakers on Sunday, May 17. The park always gets wear and tear from this event, and spreading woodchips will help protect the turf around mature trees, which can be a sensitive spot. 

Many of the park meadows are resilient and are still green, due in part to our late spring rains. The horse-chestnuts (near Shrader) and the cherry trees at the eastern edge (by Baker) are also in bloom. Get out to the park to enjoy them this month.