November’s goals could not be pursued without Succulent Garden weed control. A typical rooftop day sees the class split between weeding, collecting inventory/harvest data, or adjusting the irrigation system. The Vegetable Garden’s rapid growth and lush color presented an image of success at first glance. However upon closer inspection, it was discovered that the Spinach (Spinacia oleracea) had been ravaged by moths and the Iceberg lettuce (Lactuca sativa) was not forming heads.
Mid-month, the class paused briefly for a lecture from Professor Dvorak to inspire renovation of the Northern Green Wall. The lecture was followed by discussion intent on pursuing the best course of action toward a Green Wall Redux. Once the course was set, eager students left the meeting and removed 100 feet of faltering drip irrigation before the afternoon’s close.
November’s last class was also its busiest as 304 new plants, 256 feet of hose, and cable ties arrived at the rooftop. Dr. Merrill led the harvest of 58 Iceberg and Romaine (L. sativa var. longifolia) lettuce plants. Unfortunately only the Romaine was edible (although slightly bitter). The Succulent Garden was growing well and began to see recovery in an early straggling Color Guard (Yucca filamentosa ‘Bronze Age’). I found beauty in one of the Succulent Garden’s undesired species and convinced Professor Dvorak to allow devotion of one module to the continued growth of Purslane (Portulaca oleracea). It thrives there and fits in since it has small, thick succulent green leaves, attractive red stems, and is actually cultivated in Asia, Australia, Europe, Mexico, and the Middle East for use in cheeses, pastries, roasts, salads, soups, and sautéed or steamed side dishes (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/portulaca_oleracea, http://www.huffingtonpost.com/brigitte-mars/purslane-gandhis-favorite_b_679427.html). Outside of the Purslane haven, students removed 32 gallons of pest plants throughout the month. November closed with the addition of 206 feet of hose to the Northern Green Wall. With only one rooftop gathering remaining, students have much to accomplish as 50 feet of hose and 304 plants still require placement.