Pendle Hill Friends School

One of the struggles with urban and suburban agriculture is ready access to manures for soil conditioning. Restrictive ordinances prevent even small poultry operations and limit composting efforts to combined spaces. Yearly treatments of leaf mulch fail to replenish nutrients and organic matter in intensive grow beds.

Living close to mushroom farms allows us to use the pasteurized mushroom compost in our soil amendment program. Being creative with our waste stream as a society ensures we are getting the most efficient use of local, renewable resources. Mushroom compost is easy to transport and dig into beds. Beyond a wheelbarrow, shovel and rake no special tools are needed.

Soil fertility, mycorrhizal fungi and thriving invertebrate populations are tantamount to nutrient-dense foods and strong, healthy bodies. Food grown in sand may taste good but lacks nutrients found in living topsoils. We grow soil as much as we do vegetables, grains and fruit. Incorporating mushroom compost fulfills the balance of inputs and outputs in our half-acre garden.

Joel Meredith Fath

Philadelphia Seed Exchange
Best of Philly 2011

Organic Garden Coordinator and Sous Chef
Certified Permaculture Designer
Pendle Hill Friends School
Wallingford, PA 19086

Summer Classes at The Schuylkill Center for Environmental Education

Summer classes at The Schuylkill Center for Environmental Education in Philadelphia is teaching these 10-12 year olds the importance of compost in growing plants. The children get to examine the mycelium (root structure) in Full Circle’s mushroom compost and mushroom segments under the microscope. The kids than have the chance to participate in the Center’s vegetable garden farm and being taught by the Staff (Camila, Kim and Bonito) how mushroom compost improves the soil fertility and helps retain moisture. Finally Visiting a mushroom farm booklet, mushroom recipes and mushrooms were sent home with the children.



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