Sunday, November 2, 2014

November 2014 update

Recently someone posted a comment in our post,  Bye-Bye Lawn, asking for an update.  This gave me the nudge I needed to get back on here and post again, it's been a very long time. I may have been very quiet for a long time, but that sure doesn't mean nothing is happening.

Here's a brief update with some photos taken a few weeks ago.  Hope you enjoy!!

The Front Yard

Our front yard 

I particularly like this picture because you can see a bit of the contrast between our yard and the two closest neighbors' yards. 

We added a neighbor garden this year.  Here it has been mostly cleaned up for the winter, but this summer it was jammed with basil, parsley, eggplant, tomatoes, peppers, green beans and okra.  People were a little shy at first, but by the end of the season the garden was getting harvested regularly by neighborhood visitors. We're definitely doing this again next year, and I now have a better idea of what to plant.

The Backyard

The backyard is getting well established and we continue to introduce more perennials.  There's a gravel driveway under what you are looking at in the pictures.  As the soil is built up and the gravel begins to break apart underneath we add perennials.  Hopefully the gravel is loose enough now that the perennial root systems can get down through. I think it is.

At the back of the yard in an area that didn't include a gravel driveway we installed a pond about 15 years ago. This spring we replaced the pond liner that had begun to leak. At this time the pond ecosystem is getting reestablished.  We are still getting plenty of wildlife visitors and the plants are reestablishing nicely.

The only remaining big project left to do is remove a strip of English Ivy on the North side of the house and then planting the area with native woodland plants.  Hopefully sometime this winter I can get out there and remove ivy so the area is ready for a spring planting.

I'll keep you updated.

Friday, August 2, 2013

A new post; hopefully many more to come.

Deanna and I have been involved in many fun, interesting and blog-worthy happenings. We just need to get them into the blog, and we're working on that.

Here's my latest Adventure Tree newsletter:

Adventure Tree

Hello Everyone:

Adventure Tree's summer programs are in full-swing. We hope you'll join us for some of the following:

Image Climbing at EarthDance Open Climbs
This Sunday, August 4 is our monthly Open Enrollment Canopy Climb, which will be held at EarthDance Farms in Ferguson, MO, 2:00-5:00 PM. This is the first of our open climbs at EarthDance and we're really excited to be at this great place. Come out and join us, have some fun, and get a great bird's eye view of the farm!

Image Learn The Ropes Learn The Ropes
We have two Learn The Ropes courses scheduled during the next few weeks: August 10-11 and August 17-18. If you want to climb trees on your own then contact us to register for these training courses while there are still open slots!

Schools and Camps
Over the past few months Adventure Tree has been involved in educational programs at camps and schools including the Maplewood Richmond Heights Field Studies expedition where kids climbed for 2 days gathering scientific data, a private school program that combined tree climbing with scientific experiments about water and nutrient transport in trees, and many others. If you know of a school or camp that wants to have fun and engage kids in compelling learning experiences then please put them in touch with us.

Image Climbing Shoes St. Louis Community College Courses
We're honored to continue providing courses through the St. Louis Community College that teach about trees and climbing techniques and then give participants an opportunity to climb high into a tree. Please take a look and sign up.

Team Building
We are developing a comprehensive offering of team building programs. If your group or project team could benefit from some fun and challenging learning experiences then please get in touch with us.

Keep Reaching High -

Adventure Tree
Have Fun - Learn - Grow

Adventure Tree Website   -   Adventure Tree on Facebook

St. Louis, MO

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Thinking about Fall

Wow, it’s sure has been a hot, dry and crazy busy summer.  We hope everyone has been able to enjoy the summer despite the heat and drought. 

We spent part of the time here and part of the time away on vacation and work related trips. Guy was fortunate enough to escape much of the worst heat. Here's a few of the summer events related to Adventure Farm.
Guy spent a great deal of the summer in eastern Pennsylvania working at a summer camp both as an inspector and trainer for the challenge course and providing tree climbing programs for the campers.

Here he's training ropes course facilitators to perform rescues.

Friday, May 4, 2012

Help Adventure Farm Grow

Help Adventure Farm Grow
Adventure Farm is outgrowing our little urban lot, and we are looking for opportunities to grow and expand
The main thing that Adventure Farm (AF) is missing is space and trees for our Adventure Tree activities. We need trees and open spaces to use for experiential and natural science education activities.
Our most pressing need is trees that are open grown with wide spreading branches. These trees allow us to expand our work connecting people to the natural world while building self-confidence and a connection to place.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

May and June Calendar of Events

The previous calendar of events at Adventure Farm seemed to work out really well. Organizing a calendar kept us on track and invited people into the space to learn with us. We had a nice turn out for our first try, so we have decided to continue on. Here's what we have coming up for May and June.  We hope some of you can make it by for a visit or we see you at one of the other events.

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Highlights of April Permaculture Work

As I look back at What's Happening at Adventure Farm I realize just how much we've gotten done from that list and more. It's nice to take a few minutes as we near the end of the month to take the time to reflect on how far we have come in just the last month. Not only are we getting a lot done around here, but we are meeting and working with many wonderful like-minded people.  This little space we call Adventure Farm is truly enriching our lives in many ways.  

Here's a little April photographic summary of the permie part of Adventure Farm. There is a lot going on with the experiential education side too. Guy has promised to post the same sort of report later this week. 

The month began in the front yard. We finished not one swale project, but two.  Phase 1 of the "Tackling the Front Yard" project was to include replacing the grassy front hill with native grasses and lavendar plus installing some steps up the side lawn.  That project was finished as planned and withstood quite the rain storm like a champ.  We were so proud of how well that worked and motivated to do more. As so often happens, opportunity presented itself in the form of a deal Deanna couldn't pass up for 50 strawberry plants.  Since the second phase of the front project was to replace the south facing hill with strawberry plants we suddenly found ourselves with an unexpected project.  Deanna started digging while Guy ran off to a tree climbing event. When he returned, together they finished the project. We were a little short on mulch, but the next weekend one of our great volunteer helpers, Ryan, helped haul several loads of leaf mulch and wood mulch to finish the strawberry project and begin  the spring mulching of the back yard paths. The same day Ryan and I worked to haul organic material for his garden. It was very satisfying to help Ryan and his partner, Becky, get set up to grow some food at their apartment. It's wonderful to be building a community of support, a big part of permaculture. 

A picture of the two hill projects.  

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Wow, check out the amazing swales at work

In the last 24 hours we’ve had a number of thunderstorms move through the area, dumping around 2 inches of rain on us over night. This precipitation was on top of a previous day of around 1.5 inches of rain. Needless to say, I was a little hesitant to peek out the window this morning. After lying in bed hearing the rain pouring down outside off and on all night I expected to see leaf mulch running down the sidewalk. Instead I saw a clean sidewalk. Check it out. 
I promise I did no cleaning up. This is what it really looked like!  Notice all the dogwood flowers are knocked off. It was quite the storm.