In Your Box:
Every Week & Every Other Week
Tokyo Turnips or
Rutabaga (Full Belly Farms)
Brussel Sprouts or
Fresh Bay Leaves
“Experience is not what happens to you; it’s what you do with what happens to you.”
By Scott Dunbar
View of the fencing from the tractor
In breaking news Punxsutawney Phil did not see his shadow and we all know what that means right? With early spring on its way in we must change our crop plans and adapt to this new revelation, however, Phil is only accurate 39% of the time so we probably will not. In addition, we hardly have time to alter any of these plans as we are all busy getting prepared for the arrival of our new batch of first year apprentices! We are all very excited for these five aspiring farmers to arrive and bask in our “early spring.”
While Elle and Clara deliberate the apprentice activity schedules, Justin and I have been busy continuing fencing on the east side of the Cordova Creek Restoration Project. We are nearly finished setting posts and are getting set to begin constructing tension braces and eventually stretching eight foot high field fence. It has been a really great experience working out on this side of the property where it is so vast and quiet. This has invited numerous incredible avian encounters and spectacular rainbows. Following the construction of the fence, the next stage of the project will be to install irrigation for our future veggie fields! This is sure to be a massive project, so stay tuned for updates.
As Alicia mentioned last week, a number of us were so very fortunate to attend the Ecological Farming Association conference at the Asilomar Conference Grounds in Monterey. It was a profound learning experience for myself, but one class in particular stood out. The second half of the class about mechanical cultivation was taught by Andrew Brait of Full Belly Farms, but the first half was presented by Frank Forcella of the USDA. In this discussion Forcella presented a new weeding technique he developed which utilized the spraying of “grit,” or any hard, small particled object like sand, on weeds.
By using an air compressor and the grit, weeds could be destroyed simply by being hit by these hard particles. In addition, Forcella explained how farmers could even use fertilizers or other soil amendments as a sort of two in one method. Needless to say, my mind was blown and I hope to try this at the farm.
The beach at Asilomar
Featured Veggie: Brussel Sprouts
Did you know that Brussel Sprouts are a cultivar group of the same species (Brassica oleracea) as cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli, kale, collard greens, kohlrabi and others? The difference is simply the chosen developed traits of the plant. Brussel sprouts grow best in cool, coastal climates and are commonly grown in Santa Cruz and Monterey counties. However, we decided to try them here in Sacramento and the result was a little more interesting in that they ended up a looser, leafier version of the common “brassica balls” you see in the store. Either way, Brussel sprouts are a very nutritious vegetable full of vitamins c and k as well as dietary fiber and some b vitamins.
Featured Recipe: Brussels Sprouts
Dates and Notes
Come join us at the Midtown Market. Please visit us at the Midtown Market(2020 J St) on Saturdays from 9am-2pm during the winter.
Growing Medicinal and Culinary Herbs
Saturday, February 06, 2016, 09:30am - 12:30pm
Through a mix of classroom instruction and hands-on practice, this class will provide information on herb-gardening in general, details on growing an array of specific herbs, and instruction for harvesting and using what you grow.
Instructor: Daylin Wade
$25, $20 Co-op owners
Location : 2140 Chase Dr, Rancho Cordova, CA 95670 in the Schoolhouse
Family Herbalist Course Beginners Program
Saturday, March 26– Saturday, August 27. 10am-4:30pm
Early Bird Price: $475. After 3/1, $572
Join Candis and her team in learning the basics of Western Herbology while integrating it with the Oriental systems of Ayurveda and Traditional Chinese medicine.
A Garden in Every School Symposium
Sat. Feb. 27 (9am-5:30pm) & Sun. 28 (9am-12:30pm)
Early Bird Registration through Feb. 15 $75. Register/details:
The Spring Herbal
Wednesday March 23 2016, 5:30pm - 8:30pm
Come learn about herbs to collect, eat, and use medicinally to support overall health and vitality. We will collect plants, make medicine, and sample some of the offerings of the season.
$25, $20 Co-op owners (plus $10 for materials, payable to the instructor at class)
Location: 2140 Chase Drive in Rancho Cordova.