Organic gardening

Michelle Obama strives to strengthen communities through organic gardening

As many saw in headlines on March 20, 2009 Michelle Obama began cultivating the first organic garden at the white house. With the help of students from Bancroft Elementary and Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack, Obama created a milestone in our nations history. The White House blog has a series of postings that highlight the importance

The Importance of Nature

As impervious surface area continues to expand, the tentacles of urbanization reach further into the wilds.  Green spaces are becoming more rare.  When asked about green spaces and their childhood, many adults acknowledge that they had a special forest or pond that they remembered playing in.  Whether it be significant acerage adjacent to ones house

Tropical seeds bought locally

Critical to success in organic gardening is seed selection.  While tropical climates are generally conducive to many plant varieties, seeds well adapted to the tropical climate thrive better. Pacific Quest’s garden specialist Scott Ricci found a local farmer/seed distributor with twelve years experience of growing on the Big Island of Hawaii. Tom Brannen, owner and

P-Patch YOUTH Gardening Program

Community gardens are gaining attention nation wide.  As highlighted in a blog posting on the new garden at the white house, gardening plays a unique role in building community.  While many community gardens draw interest from adult enthusiasts, attention to the youth is sometimes lacking. Schools and programs are springing up around the country incorporating

Land notes 1/1/10

On Friday the kuleana group talked about the basics of gardening here at PQ. We went over soils, the nursery, transplanting and companion plants and then did a full garden tour. The students were receptive, especially when it came to learning about bananas and sweet potatoes.  Students then harvested sweet potatoes from one of the

Recent study linking pesticides to ADHD

A recent study published in the Journal of Pediatrics links common pesticides found in food to increased incidence of ADHD.  The study surveyed children with high levels of pesticides in their urine.  Results indicate that kids with higher levels of pesticides also had higher diagnoses rates of ADHD.  This is yet another study pointing toward

Notes from Land Manager Patrick Leatherman

Patrick Leatherman (on right side) is our organic gardening specialist at PQ.  He works to help the students develop connections between gardening and their individual therapeutic processes.  I have cut and pasted some of Patrick’s notes from the weekend.  I have deleted the students names to preserve confidentiality. Nalu Camp: Friday morning we met in

Sustainable Growth: A Parent’s Journey

When I went to the parent workshops last December to visit my 14-year-old son, I was struck by the language, the setting and the lifestyle of the Pacific Quest community.  PQ staff repeatedly emphasized the word growth.  I would naturally comment on “change” only to be gently reminded that the PQ philosophy stresses “growth.”  

PQ Nursery Order

“We are excited about the garden developments in our newest camps,” said PQ organic garden specialist Patrick Leatherman.  Patrick completed a large scale order from a local big island nursery last week.  He seems very enthusiastic about the tropical fruits that the plants will provide.  Patrick ordered 5 Tahitan Lime trees, 5 Pink Eureka Lemon

Taro Harvest Festival

Recently the Ohana has been hard at work harvesting Taro in the garden and creating new ways to spice up an ancient plant.  Taro, also known as “kalo,” is one of the original “canoe plants” that the Polynesians brought to Hawaii to propagate and sustain a new civilization.  An interesting fact that students at Pacific