The Harvest Center G & G Tour occurs 11:00 am – 3:00 pm August 17, 2014. Join this free, self-guided tour of personal gardens, community gardens and greenhouses in the Ute Pass area of Colorado. You will see wonderful examples of High Altitude Gardening and plans for a new community garden planned for 2015. Please note: there is no garden in place now at Woodland Park Community Church. It is listed on the tour to announce plans for the future.
Click for an interactive Google Map or pdf file to print 2014G>ourMap2page
Special Note: Steve & Michelle Harding sent directions for finding their place. Please read.
From downtown Woodland Park, take Highway 24 West, drive 8.6 miles and turn left onto Twin Rocks Rd.
Drive 5.8 miles to end and turn left onto Teller 1 (CR1)
Drive 1.1 miles and turn left on North Mountain Estates Rd. (Entrance to Colorado Mountain Estates Subdivision)
Drive .4 miles and turn right onto Homestead LN
Drive .2 miles and turn left onto Duesouth Rd., the road name changes to Deception Rd., and then to South Mountain Estates Rd.
Drive 1.8 miles and turn left onto Ajax Rd.
Drive .2 miles and we are on the Right with a sign that says Harding’s.
We will paint a large carrot on the sign!
Identifying this plant was a fun puzzle. It looks like an alien cross of asparagus and mushroom. Teller County Master Gardener, Mike Corso, provided the answer 3-4 years ago during one of his wildflower walks. This beautiful specimen inspired the posting of this photo and information. This is a mycotrophic wildflower, Pinedrops (Pterospora andromedea), as described at this web page.
Larry, Jim, Jon and Skye adding garden space at Little Chapel Food Pantry in Divide, Colorado. Off camera are Kathy C & Lee. Update: June 18th Jim, Chris, Ron and Lee moved soil into three beds and repaired the hoop covering on one.
We enjoyed bringing organic plants to the market which were selected for our high altitude conditions; hardened off; and, reasonably priced.
Ron, Chris, Cheryl, and Julie are lifting a covered raised bed for transport to a staging location where the bed will be refurbished and then installed at a local school or food pantry. Hillary, Hank, Phyllis, Anne, Rose and Lee were also involved in the project.
The Harvest Center promotes sustainable, healthy lifestyles. Our dome greenhouse at Aspen Valley Ranch in Woodland Park, CO grow veggies year ’round off-the-grid. Because of our past couple of years experiencing drought, we developed an interest in demonstrating the use of gravity fed drip irrigation to the many high altitude gardeners in our area. This short video shows the feasibility of using off-the-shelf materials to create a gravity-fed system.
On this beautiful day in the Rockies, sixty + high altitude gardeners brought their positive energy to the Woodland Park Library.
Lee Willoughby began with a brief overview of the workshop and events scheduled for this Spring. Click to view his slideshow. Among the handouts available was the updated Seed Planting Guide. The companion download is a document representing the collective wisdom of Harvest Center growers regarding seeds and sources for maximizing success in our high altitude environment. The seed suggestions are available for download SeedsSources2014 .
Michelle and Steve Harding shared their comments and photos in a light hearted manner which kept the audience chuckling. Their photos are available for viewing through dropbox. Steve recommends the greenhouse plans at this site as the inspiration for his greenhouse design.
Jeff Wolin’s presentation, “Good Enough Gardening”, was also humorous and informative. The Wolin Family gardening efforts in 2013 were quite productive. View his slideshow as html pages by clicking here.
Ron, Kathy & I welcomed Tashina to our volunteer work crew at the Harvest Center dome by asking her to incorporate soil amendments into raised beds and apply a deep watering.
Additional work by our crew assured the dome that we hadn’t forgotten her and would be planting soon. We took a short winter break this year after growing veggies here for five consecutive years (that’s 365 days per year in our Growing Spaces dome!).
We are fortunate to have this “win-win” relationship with the faculty of the nutrition program at UCCS.
Photo: Ron, Tashina, Kathy & Lee behind camera
A large group of high altitude gardeners convened today for a workshop on selecting and starting seeds appropriate for our environment. Jennifer Allard, Mary Menz and Lee & Kathy Willoughby shared their experiences with the group. Follow this link for a summary which includes pdf downloads and videos.
The Harvest Center “sprouted” in 2009 from Lee Willoughby on Vimeo.
After a lengthy germination, The Harvest Center sprouted in 2009 and grew substantially that first year. Our dome greenhouse was built and began producing veggies for the Community Cupboard food pantry. We built our first community garden in Woodland Park and our sister garden was built by the good people of Green Mountain Falls. About 150 planter boxes were built and spread around our community for people to grow tiny gardens!
This video captures the spirit of that exciting year and documents the completion of projects. We hope that you will sense the intangible value of the rich community-building experience we enjoyed.