Thursday, August 30, 2012

An update on hurricane recovery efforts at OSBG

Hello friends, family, social media followers, and all of our other supporters out there. We want to thank you all so much for the love and encouragement you've shown us as our state has been impacted by Hurricane Isaac over the last few days. We wanted to make sure that everyone knows that we're all safe and sound, emerging unscathed from the storm. Our staff, a few students, and some volunteers we have staying with us from Lexington, MA road out the storm in the comfort of our building, staying dry, well fed, and in good spirits.

Our farm on the other hand didn't end up so 'un-scathed'. We spent this morning salvaging whatever crops are still good (e.g. black eyes peas, bananas, sprouts, herbs, etc.) and cleaning up downed trees so we can get right back to business as usual ASAP growing good food for the neighborhood and New Orleans area with our lovely students who have also all made it through the storm safely.

Along with damage to our crops our building and one of our green houses also sustained damage. Fortunately all of the damage is minor and temporary, unfortunately it's NOT going to be inexpensive to fix. We're currently estimating at least $3,000 in damage along with nearly $7,000 in additional repairs to prevent this same damage in the future.

Below are some of the pictures that we've taken since the storm passed. Please share this post via email, twitter, facebook or whatever other social networks you're connected to. We could use all the help we can get in terms of secure donations right here on our website and gift cards to Home Depot or Lowes. We also can accept checks made out to Our School at Blair Grocery. ALL DONATIONS ARE TAX DEDUCTIBLE. PLEASE NOTIFY US IF YOU NEED A RECEIPT FOR FILING YOUR TAXES.

the hoop house lovingly known as Patches needs new plastic.

all of our basil has been wiped out with the exception of the few bits that are still harvestable

our Mirliton trellis needs some love so our plants can produce a nice fall crop and survive into the spring

a couple of oak tree limbs fell on the newest section of micro greens that we just planted last week

about 50-70% of our banana trees were knocked over. fortunately we were able to prematurely harvest bananas off of the plants that fell over and trim the trees back so they can regrow happily

we think these missing shingles are a large part of the culprit for the drywall damage inside


about 80% of our classroom ceiling will need to be replaced.

water and electricity don't make a good match. good thing the power has been out for two days.

fortunately our hoop house where our sprouts are grown stayed intact and the sprouts are doing just fine

Ron and Jesse were out first thing this morning salvaging whatever okra we still have. Our neighbors are gonna love us!

Sabrina, Leanna, and Oliver are cleaning out Hoop House Patches so we can get to planting more for the fall and winter



these are a few of the banana trees we've cut awayhere are the bananas we've harvested


Jamie's wasting no time seeding arugula

 Abbey vacuuming up water that came in down stairs through the ceiling

hanging out in the kitchen waiting for everything to blow over

 more salvaging of what we can, getting ready to move on with what we've got and make the most out of the fall season






Thursday, August 23, 2012

Solution-Oriented

Toby with his bean sheller

This morning four ALL STARS from Lexington High School in Massachusetts returned for a ten day intensive training. They're already innovating:

Shelling black-eyed peas took WAY too long this afternoon, so the crew researched designs online and, after some modifications, Toby walked upstairs with this bean sheller. Tomorrow morning we start harvesting (and shelling) an acre of beans at far farm!