The main mound plot at Dufferin school garden is ready for planting, we met with Audrey Logan to begin preparing the area. This gathering was during “rest” week on the moon cycle. If you need back ground info on the mound garden please see this post. http://www.naturesperfectplantfood.com/2012/03/18/sun-root-spring-harvest/ It will be divided into 13 separate segments each containing a Three Sister mound. We’re using sister’s sunflower, bean and squash. The type of squash (Askuta) meaning to eat raw or uncooked is considered any hard rind squash such as pumpkin, acorn etc. This is picked when young, just after the flower drops off, its dried and pounded into flour or can be left in chunks and reconstituted in soups and stews. Interestingly, the nutritional value of the flesh is highest at this time, before the plant has put its energy into seed development. In accordance with the lesson of the Dear spirit http://www.naturesperfectplantfood.com/2012/04/19/garden-lessons-from-the-deer-spirit/ some squash is left to mature. Seeds from these can be roasted and used to create long lasting pemmican the original granola bar.
Our garden model will be Turtle Island, the 13 separate mounds represent the yearly cycle of the Moon. It’s pointed East toward the rising sun. In the oral history we’ve been learning, Turtle Island is also the term used for Mother Earth and our garden is a small representation of the whole. Around the perimeter we will introduce protective plants such as onion and some grains. Companion planting is a huge part of traditional gardening, the most simple example being the Three Sisters but because this oral history is wide and deep we can explore some of the more complex combinations. It’s not as easy as it sounds, like all families, some folks just can’t get along. As always feel free to comment or question this or any post, next time we’ll gossip a little more about “the family dynamic”.