Alameda Backyard Growers

Birgitt Evans &nbsp&nbsp Locals can make use of the seeds at the Alameda Backyard Growers’ seed library on San Jose Avenue. Available seeds include Glass-gem popcorn, Straight-Eight cucumbers and collards.

Free Seed Library Comes to the Island City

Aug 13,2020

Alameda Backyard Growers (ABG) was founded 10 years ago by Amanda MacLean Bruemmer and Janice Edwards in response to the economic meltdown as a way to build community, learn about growing food and give back to those in the community in need.

Read More
Kristen Smeal &nbsp&nbsp Companion plants thrive in St. Philip Neri garden.

Companion Planting: Good Neighbors/Bad Neighbors

Jul 09,2020

Just like humans, plants have friends and foes and can thrive or fail when planted in close proximity to one another. By definition, planting one or more types of plants together in a beneficial relationship is called companion planting.

Read More
Brigitt Evans &nbsp&nbsp Resources for drip irrigation systems can be found at Urban Farmer at, or ordered online from Peaceful Valley Farm Supply at

Save Water With an Irrigation System

Jun 11,2020

As if there isn’t enough to worry about in 2020, the Bay Area is in the grip of another drought year, having received only 40 percent of the average annual rainfall. Wait! Don’t run away. There is actually something gardeners can do about this problem: Build a simple drip-irrigation system.

Read More
Marla Koss &nbsp&nbsp On July 9, 2019, two grafts of a 4-in-1 pluot tree collapsed from the weight of the fruit, several weeks before it was mature enough to ripen off the tree. The branches (grafts) were repaired, but the fruit was lost. This year, the tree’s crop is very scant.

Thin Excess Fruit Now to Improve This Year’s Crop

May 14,2020

In a time of food insecurity, what could be more inviting than a tree covered in fruit? Then again, sometimes the gods can be too kind. Overly generous fruit loads have a way of breaking branches and yielding small, poor-quality fruit if not managed in a timely manner. 

Read More
Courtesy photos &nbsp&nbsp Newly planted vegetable gardens, like the one above, have sprouted up all over.

Beginner’s Guide to Planting Victory Gardens

Apr 09,2020

In March 2010, Alameda Backyard Growers (ABG) held its first meeting. Formed in response to the financial crisis in 2008, we created educational programming and set up Project Pick to help our community grow and donate food.

Read More
Courtesy photo &nbsp&nbsp Cabbage is one of many brassicas that can be grown during the winter in Alameda.

Alameda’s Secret Growing Season

Feb 13,2020

People move to the Bay Area for many reasons, among them: work, its unique social life and the fantastic natural beauty of California. But for gardeners who find themselves living here a greater secret awaits, for Alameda has not two, but three growing seasons.

Read More

Project Tree Set for 2020

Jan 23,2020

Following on last year’s success, Project Tree has announced the return of its Tree Care Workshop and $25 off Tree Coupon Program. This year’s workshops will be held Saturday, Feb. 8, from 10 a.m. to Noon and Sunday, March 1, from 2 to 4 p.m. at Rhythmix Cultural Works, 2513 Blanding Ave. 

Read More
Photo courtesy Stopwaste &nbsp&nbsp A StopWaste workshop participant practices carbon farming by spreading compost.

Fight Climate Change: Focus on What’s Beneath

Jan 09,2020

Communities all over the world have love and pride for where they live and Californians are no different. There are places here for everyone: mountains and coastlines, grasslands and forests, even a backyard garden or a city park.

Read More
Courtesy photo.  A telltale sign of oak root fungus is a cluster of honey-colored mushrooms.

‘Tis the Season for Oak Root Fungus to Strike

Dec 20,2019

Alameda’s garden soil may be tops for cultivating and planting in, but it does have a significant drawback: it harbors oak root fungus Armillaria mellea. Do not confuse this with “sudden oak death” Phytopthora ramorum. 

Read More
Courtesy photo &nbsp&nbsp Jillian Saxty, ABG’s Project Pick coordinator, displays some 400 pounds of Alameda-grown oranges delivered to Alameda Food Bank recently. Project Pick will safely pick fruit from Island trees that would otherwise go to waste. Fruit tree owners are encouraged to sign up.

A Year in the Life of Alameda Backyards

Nov 14,2019

The days are shorter now; the nights are cooler. Only one more educational program in the Alameda Backyard Growers’ (ABG) calendar will take place in November on stopping food waste over the holidays.

Read More