|Jeremiah and David aka Dr. Tomato|
|Friend/neighbor Roger proved a lifesaver in building the framing for chambers|
|Some of our Refugee Farmers working hard so we can get their seedlings going|
This is the first of many blog submissions on our social justice initiative here at The Bedford Greenhouse Project. I hope you follow along and pass it on to friends/family for their enjoyment. I also encourage all readers to come out and see the excitement for yourselves. Who knows, your picture could be included when you least expect it.
So, the season begins with a new growing concept. For the third consecutive year I am partnered with the International Institute of NH (IINH) to generate seedlings for local community gardens which support those in need, particularly the refugee population. Teena Hayden, my previous IINH partner, has moved on and I'm now blessed to be working with Jeremiah Vernon (pictured above).
In the past we used radiant heat (hot water tubes) as our primary source of heat to grow the plants. However, this year under the tutelage of Dr. Tomato (pictured above) we have constructed "grow chambers" to provide a more controlled growing environment for our seedlings. Each chamber (there are four this year) is 8' x 5' and 3' in height with 2" very tight insulation to ensure maximum efficiency. Inside each box are four grow lights, an exhaust fan (heat/humidity control), very small portable electric heater, and temperature/humidity controls to ensure optimal growing conditions 24 hours a day... think an incubator for seeds. Presently, one of the boxes is fully operational and we've been very successful at starting out our wala wala onions which will go into the ground in early April. Our goal this year is 20,000 vegetable/herb seedlings.
I am personally inviting you out to see and even volunteer if you wish... it's pretty darn cool.