Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Fall 2013

Fall is an exciting time for gardens and gardeners in Central Florida.

The weather is ever changing but its milder than the summer months. Suddenly its much more pleasant to be in the garden all day long. This fall we will be implementing many awesome changes to our garden including some basic irrigation for the established raised beds, small fences around our main growing areas, a hot compost set-up, and planning our spring/summer crops.

We currently have a wide array of medicinal, culinary, edibles and ornamentals. I will be cataloging these over the winter. Its pretty exciting to see everything coming together. During spring we will begin selling seeds we have collected and we should have a wide variety of surplus vegetables we will be offering to the public directly at our site.

The work we are doing here is part of a larger vision to provide our local area with high quality locally sourced fruits and vegetables. Our dream is coming true; to share the plentiful bounty that occurs as you nourish the earth and watch as she nourishes you in return.

The most incredible pleasure has been harvesting enough vegetables to have YUMMY organic salads every day. As the garden matures and prospers we see plants showing themselves whose seeds have been dormant during the hot summer season. Many of the volunteer plants are much more vigorous than its seeded counterparts. Its lovely to walk around and see how our system changes daily.

I am determined to get organized this fall when I am not in the garden I will be working on this blog.

Monday, November 25, 2013

Three Bin Composting Solution

Above are the side and front view of the area we chose to be our new composting area. Josh began with a pointed shovel to clear the area and level it off to place the palettes that my father had obtained free of charge from a  local business. We placed three palettes on their sides to act as the back to our compost pile and then will use four to make the shape for the three areas: Layers, Mixed, Finished. Its pretty simple!

Here is the almost finished product. We need two more palettes and the chicken wire to line each bin. BUT We already have a system for our food waste. YAY

This week we are working on contacting local businesses that can provide us with enough waste to make our composting project a reality. We already have sources for horse and chicken manure. We are now looking either to obtain our own bunnies for rabbit manure or to find a local backyard bunny farmer who wouldn't mind sharing their bunny droppings. We will also contact several coffee shops for their grounds and a couple of restaurants to make sure we have enough food waste to layer.

Its going to be a hot pile of dirt! I cant wait.

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Why are you eating that?

When was the last time you took a look at the ingredients in your foods?

As a rule I tend to look at the ingredients in 99% of everything I consume. There is something very gratifying about knowing what I am eating and where it has come from. Disclaimer: you do not have to enjoy your food choices as much as I do...

Its funny to think that about 100 years ago the supermarket or 'grocery' was not stocked with the myriad of food choices available to USA consumers today. Many foods now available are a series of gimmicks with different combinations of a variety of stabilizers, gums, corn products, soy products, emulsifiers, artificial colors and flavors amongst other awkward named food items.

So now I have two questions for you:

Do you really want to eat that?


Why are you still eating that?

Dont get me wrong! I am not some food judge waiting in the shadows to snatch your eating choices from you. HA Its up to you. I do recommend that we all understand that the food that is available overall is not necessarily healthy but fulfilling.

Do you want fill a gap?


Would you like to nourish your body with essential nutrients and feel better than ever before?

Learning about what you are consuming is essential to your health. So please; when you are at the supermarket or any other food establishment: ask questions and read labels. Its your health. Most companies that sell food are not interested in nourishment or health. They are interested in selling you, the consumer, a product that makes them money. Make sure you begin to understand how our food system works. Shop as much as you can with local grocers and farms. Grow your own food.

There is nothing wrong with questioning the hands that are feeding us. Unfortunately for most of us the prospect of growing our own food seems like a distant dream or to some a horrible dirty nightmare: MUCH easier to let hundreds of thousands of other people be responsible for your nutrition while you just pay a monetary value suitable to you.

Think about how satisfying it would be to serve yourself food from a garden that you tend that you know where the food comes from and what is put on it and who handles it. It much healthier than buying something that has been touched by who knows who and has been goodness knows where. So think about it.

Why are you eating that?