4 Blue Ribbons at Maker Faire 2016!

Wow, 1 week since Maker Faire, and I’m only now finally able to write about it. We taught at several schools last week, keeping us very busy, but it is worth mentioning what an awesome success the Faire was.

We spoke to hundreds and hundreds of people, about companion planting, water-saving techniques including oyas, soil preparation, and answered many specific garden questions. Our 2 workshops were packed, and to top it all off, we ended up winning 4 BLUE RIBBONS! This is really a huge honor for us because, as I got to see, there were many truly amazing projects at the faire.

This will continue to be one of the few festivals we attend, as the audience there really comes to learn, to engage, and to grow. Thank you to all the organizers, especially Kim Dow, and a big thank you to my team of volunteers who answered questions and lead greenhouse tours for the entirety of that very busy weekend!

Cheers,

Justin

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Greetings from CG’s newest intern

This spring, we are very happy to welcome Luiz Silveira to the teaching team. Luiz wanted to say hello himself. See below…

Hi! My name is Luiz, I’m a Brazilian business student living in Oakland. Although environmental matters and social justice were subjects I was always interested in, back in my country these are tough subjects to find through organized communities, and information is usually unavailable. On the other hand, living in California helped me meet so many people and innovative projects that totally shifted my negative mindset to a more hopeful attitude by the amount of effort I’ve seen here for a sustainable future.

On this search, I ended up meeting Angie, Justin’s awesome truck, and reached him to learn more about his project. Fortunately, I was chosen to assist with Compass Green and it’s been great to absorb so much knowledge on sustainability and farming techniques, specifically the Bio-intensive method. Growing up in Brazil, I remember how certain teachers impacted me on my views about the environment we live in; and being able to help students through the project’s alternative approach on farming education is a very gratifying experience!

I’m glad to join the team and hope for the best through 2016’s tour.Luiz

One week left!

IMG_20151118_125226611 IMG_20151201_082150372 IMG_20151113_130925229 IMG_20151117_170722535_HDRIt has been an amazingly rewarding tour through the San Francisco Bay Area this fall. So far we’ve reached approximately 4,000 students, met with Master Gardeners, school garden coordinators, and parent volunteers.

We have felt very fortunate to share our love of food and the planet with so many young people, and as always we learn quite a bit, even though we are supposed to be the teachers. We learn things like the fact that whales can have a gestation period up to 18 months, or that the Garden Huckleberries that I have growing in my truck are also known as sun berries and were developed by the horticulturist Luther Burbank, in Santa Rosa, and that there is a similar plant commonly eaten in southern Mexico.

I met people from the towns that have completely run out of water, and met farmers who are utilizing water-efficient techniques that improve the soil and increase production. We had engine breakdowns, DIY moments, and experienced the kindness of strangers. As always, it has been quite a ride.

Here’s to one more week of teaching in 2015!