Garden School: Dried Flower Wreaths

Saturday, Nov. 16
10 a.m. to noon
1016 NW 32nd Street
 (in front of the hoop house.)

Note: this is a 2-hour class; fee is $15. Pay upon arrival.

Back by popular demand! Learn to create beautiful wreaths from dried flowers and greens. Edith has an uncommon talent for combining dried flowers and foliage with visually intricate and elegant results. Plus, they smell great! Using plants grown at CommonWealth, Edith will walk participants through the steps of making a wreath of their own to enjoy for months to come.

Instructor: Edith Siemens is a retired horticulturist who has turned her yard into a wonderland for butterflies, other pollinators, and the people who love them.

Additional wreath materials available for $10 per wreath.

NEXT (and last of the year):

November 30: The Great Pumpkin Smash
This family-friendly event is free, from 9 am to noon
What to do with all those pumpkins, once Thanksgiving is over and cold weather sets in? Bring them and the kids to CommonWealth, where we’ll make a big compost pile and everybody can toss and smash pumpkins to their hearts delight. Messy fun for the whole family! You can bring your leftover hay bales, too, and we’ll add them to the mix.

And soon there will be winter…

The transition of growing seasons is well underway.

In the hoop house beds have been planted to lettuce, kale, kickstarter and arugula (In photo Thanh is pleased with the arugula germination!) After pepper plants are removed, those beds will be planted to spinach.

Before the first freeze, Lia and Harriette harvested the bed of sweet potatoes, bringing in 160 pounds.

Become a Patreon Patron— and get this cool tote!

Do you have a heart for the work of growing food in an urban space but don’t have time to get your hands in the dirt?

Do you love our veggies and flowers and feel strongly that locally-grown produce is something you want to support?

Do you support the idea of helping us teach others how to grow some of their own food?

Do you simply like the feel that you get when you come to visit?

Consider becoming a Patreon patron. You get to choose the level of your monthly support, starting at $2. We value every cent. And there are perks! Including a new one: everyone who is a patron or signs up now until Nov. 9 at the $5/month or more level will get a CommonWealth tote bag! Our totes are made of organic cotton grown in Texas & printed with soy based inks thanks to the amazing McKenzie & Co!More info on becoming a patron here:

Check out the new totes!

Meet our Community: Hannah Braden

Hannah Braden remembers measuring the very first garden beds with her dad in their home in Oklahoma City, then gardening and composting in their front and back yards.

She recalls when she was in middle school, biking with her dad the 12 miles from their house to the Regional Food Bank to volunteer in the Red Dirt Soil Builders program from 9 to noon on Saturdays. About the time that program ended, she helped her parents, David and Sara, co-founders of a new urban garden not far from their home: CommonWealth Urban Farms. She remembers weeding and helping build the beds. In fact, she planted the first bed at CommonWealth: “Carrots. In the bed closest to the stone wall.”

The first days of her composting experience at CommonWealth was with beer grains, and, soon after, the first of Whole Foods’ donations for the compost operation.

Then came high school at Classen SAS and her dream to become a performance pianist. She was accepted on an academic scholarship to Lawrence University in Appleton, Wisconsin, where she studied piano for two years. A chance to study abroad changed everything. In Pune, India, the first semester of her junior year she worked for four months on a project studying solid municipal waste management. “I learned about the waste-pickers union; the second strongest in the world. I worked with a city government and their program of separating recycling and compost; wet and dry waste.” She wrote a 40-page paper to cap her project.

Taking a gap year before going back to college for her senior year, she volunteered at a not-for-profit group called EcoCycle in Denver that collected compost. A ride on the compost collection truck piqued her interest in doing collection.

Finishing her studies at Lawrence University, she spent time during her last winter break in Hong Kong learning about sustainability and green spaces and noting waste management practices there. Her capstone project her senior year was a project she designed to study waste management in New York City.

Back in Oklahoma City, she is back at CommonWealth volunteering with the compost team. And, she is a member of the Fertile Ground team, driving trucks and bikes on compost collection routes and as backup driver for the recycling pickups. She also does special events for Fertile Ground: zero waste events at festivals and special events for groups that want to not only keep waste out of the landfill but educate people as well.

“It’s fascinating. Interesting,” she says. “It’s important to know what happens to what you throw away. Things travel all around the world. Plastic ends up in the ocean.”

Hannah’s knowledge of recycling and composting methods is vast. And she enjoys helping people learn.  “People are confused about how to recycle and compost. I like having conversations with the public about what to do with garbage.”

She is using her creative skills to learn how to mark public containers so that people know more clearly how to dispose of waste. She plans to be able to take her commercial driver’s license test so that she can run Fertile Ground’s recycling routes in the big truck.

And she’s looking forward to moving into the CommonWealth neighborhood soon. With her enthusiasm, training and dedication, she brings hope to our city that we can improve our waste management. There could not be a more fitting or hoped-for homecoming! Hey, Hannah’s home!!

What to Plant this Week? Check out our Beginning Gardener Video Series

How to Grow a Vegetable Garden Even Though You’ve Never Planted a Seed in Your Life

We designed this video series to help beginners have a successful, productive garden. In small bites each week, we cover how to get started, where to find the stuff you need, what to plant and when to plant it, what to do when you spot a bug, how to water, how to harvest, and what to do with those yummy vegetables you’ve never eaten before.
This week: End of the Season Wrap Up! The last of the series. Check our Facebook page to view the latest video, or our youtube channel to see them all.
End of the Season Wrap Up!