Category: Weekly Farm Update

Farmers’ Note

Hello Growing Club & CSA members!

Although we are well passed Spring Equinox, I finally feel like Spring is here. Today we harvested our first zucchinis (they are in the Large Boxes), after they had been languishing in the ground for weeks with our cloudy days and (SoCal) cold nights. During the last week, we also planted our first few beds of tomatoes and eggplant. In previous years, we had these plants started by the Cal Poly Pomona nursery for us, and it was so exciting to see us grow these plants in our brand new nursery. The nursery had really been the missing link in our farm ecosystem, and seeing it flourish under the care of our trainees has been very rewarding.

I also wanted to share today some astounding photos of the leeks we are now harvesting from what we planted wayyyy back in November (yes, it is a long season crop). Most leeks you see at the store are not planted the correct way, so they don’t have the long blanched stem they should have. We planted our the old-fashioned way, and we have extraordinary results to show for it. Our largest leek today was 2.4 pounds and taller then an average child. Here’s a photo of Elinor after harvesting (for small boxes) today.

A post shared by Pearls Page (@zerowastefarmer) on

Until next time,

Farmer Rishi
Founder/Director, The Growing Club

Photos of the Week

Image credit: Brooke Ramos

Farmer Trainee’s Journal

This week’s CSA Box

(Please click each item below for a larger photo, description, and preparation instructions.)

Notes for This Week’s Box

See the notes below about celtuce!
Tip: Use the swiss chard stalk the same way you would use celery in soups and stews.

Large Box

Vegetables:
– 1 salad box
– 1 head cabbage
– 1 bunch broccoli
– 1 fennel bulb
– 1  box turnips
– 1 bunch zuchiini
– 1 bunch lacinato kale
– 1 bunch Asian Greens

Herbs:
– 1 bunch Egyptian onions
– 1 bunch radishes

Fruit:
-2 lbs loquat

Small Box

Vegetables:
– 1 salad box
– 1 head of cabbage
– 1 box of broccoli
– 1 fennel bulb
– 1 box of turnips
– 1 leek

Herbs:
– 1 bunch Egyptian Onion

Fruit:
– 1 lb loquat

Leafy Vegetables
In case your greens are wilted by the time you pickup your box, please follow these instructions:

– Fill a small bowl or tub with 1 inch of water
– Cut a 1/2 inch of the bottoms of the stems of your leafy greens
– Place greens, with stems down, into the bowl of water
– Leave the greens in the bowl overnight and by morning they should be rehydrated

Wrap your rehydrated greens in a towel and store the in the fridge. Summer greens like water spinach, moringa, and yam leaves don’t last long either way, so eat those as soon as you can.

Herbs
The best way to store your herbs so that they keep longer is to cut the stems a little and place them in a glass filled with about an inch of water. Cover the leaves loosely with a bag and keep them in the refrigerator. Replace the water inside when it gets cloudy. This works great with basil, mint, cilantro, parsley, and many other herbs.

Please feel free to share your recipes with us and also any storing tips you may have. 🙂

 

Farmers’ Note

Hello Growing Club & CSA members!

First, a quick follow up on the on-going developer saga next door: As I mentioned last week, we are now awaiting the developers appeal of the non-decision made by the Planning Commission last week. The company has 20 days to appeal, otherwise they may choose to start the whole process over again with a different development plan (or possibly do nothing). Meanwhile, we gathered a few people together to present our issue to the City Council, which would decide upon the appeal. We had a few people show up to Monday’s City Council and present our point of view during the open Public Comment period. The City Council is not required to respond during Public Comment, so we essentially just introduced our issue to them in case the appeal does come through. Now, we wait.

On the farm, we had quite an amazing (and hectic) day. This week we started our interview process for our new farmer training applicants. We have had four come by so far, and they have all been terrific, so I’m sure we’ll have a difficult time deciding on who to bring in. We also had one of our most fantastic harvests today; I think we harvested around 400 pounds of fennel, lettuce, Egyptian onion, leeks, beets, and more. It was really quite astounding to see that much produce come off the farm in one day, and a testament to the ecological techniques we follow. 95% of our fertility come from compost, we haven’t sprayed even neem oil for a month or two, and we are doing this all while training people how to grow food. Wow!

Until next time,

Farmer Rishi
Founder/Director, The Growing Club

Photos of the Week

Farmer Trainee’s Journal

This week’s CSA Box

(Please click each item below for a larger photo, description, and preparation instructions.)

Notes for This Week’s Box

See the notes below about celtuce!
Tip: Use the swiss chard stalk the same way you would use celery in soups and stews.

Large Box

Vegetables:
– 1 box lettuce
– 1 bunch chioggia beets
– 1 bunch swiss chard
– 1 bunch celtuce
– 1  bunch carrots
– 1 fennel bulb
– 1 bunch broccoli
– 1 bunch lacinato kale

Herbs:
– 1 bunch Egyptian onions
– 1 bunch cilantro

Fruit:
– 1 lb oranges
– 1 lb Pakistani mullberry

Small Box

Vegetables:
– 1 box lettuce
– 1 bunch chioggia beets
– 1 bunch carrots
– 1 bunch swiss chard
– 1 bunch kale mix
– 1 fennel bulb

Herbs:
– 1 bunch Egyptian Onion

Fruit:
– 1 lb loquat

Leafy Vegetables
In case your greens are wilted by the time you pickup your box, please follow these instructions:

– Fill a small bowl or tub with 1 inch of water
– Cut a 1/2 inch of the bottoms of the stems of your leafy greens
– Place greens, with stems down, into the bowl of water
– Leave the greens in the bowl overnight and by morning they should be rehydrated

Wrap your rehydrated greens in a towel and store the in the fridge. Summer greens like water spinach, moringa, and yam leaves don’t last long either way, so eat those as soon as you can.

Herbs
The best way to store your herbs so that they keep longer is to cut the stems a little and place them in a glass filled with about an inch of water. Cover the leaves loosely with a bag and keep them in the refrigerator. Replace the water inside when it gets cloudy. This works great with basil, mint, cilantro, parsley, and many other herbs.

Please feel free to share your recipes with us and also any storing tips you may have. 🙂

 

Farmers’ Note

Hello Growing Club & CSA members!

Thanks to all you who came out to the Public Hearing last night and supported our farm in our struggle to protect our work and our mission! After an exhausting night, I think the conclusion was close to the best we could have asked for, and all us of feel so blessed and honored to be part of such a supportive community willing to stand up for the Earth.

For those of you who were unable to attend or had to leave the meeting early, I will give a small recap:

The property neighboring us to the South is being proposed for development into 14 two story townhome units that would cast significant shadows over our farm. Last night was the second Public Hearing in regards to the proposed development, and our community came out in full force! We had nearly 30 people submit public comments, numerous letters submitted prior to the hearing, and many more in the audience.

The evening started with the developer defending her plans and trying to show that the development would not affect our or our neighbors gardens. She submitted a “shade analysis video” showing that the development would hardly cast any shadow onto the garden.

One of the Planning Commissioners, Kyle Brown, pointed out several incongruities with the developers shading analysis and said he had hoped that “understanding the movement of the sun” would have been a much simpler matter. He openly discounted her shade analysis.

During the Public Comment period, numerous garden supporters spoke up, describing their affection for the garden and the positive changes it and it’s community has brought to their lives. At this time, we also presented our shade analysis, showing that the development would cast a shadow onto our garden.

The developer responded to Public Comment quite irrationally, making a number of deceitful statements, intending to defame both the garden and me personally. She proceeded to ask what kind of organic garden could grow 8 pound cabbage and 3 pound fennel if it was not “using GMO seeds and chemicals.” Highly comical.

At the end of the night (around 11am), Planning Commissioners took a vote to approve the project. The vote was counted as 3 yes, 2 no, and 1 abstain, and the vote failed since no majority decision was reached (4 yes/no votes were needed).

The result is that the developer must now appeal to the City Council to approve the project, which means our community will have to show up at least one more time to put a final stop to this project as it has been proposed.

We will keep you all updated as we get more information regarding the next City Hall Meeting. Please be patient with us if we are slow to respond to your inquiries, we are trying to do all this and run a world class farm and farmer training program (applications due today!).

Thank you all again for your continued support! We couldn’t do this work without you.

Until next time,

Farmer Rishi
Founder/Director, The Growing Club

Photos of the Week

Farmer Trainee’s Journal

This week’s CSA Box

(Please click each item below for a larger photo, description, and preparation instructions.)

Notes for This Week’s Box

See the notes below about celtuce!
Tip: Use the swiss chard stalk the same way you would use celery in soups and stews.

Large Box

Vegetables:
– 1 bunch red lettuce* not pictured
– 1 bunch green lettuce
– 1 cabbage head
– 1 bunch celtuce
– 1  bunch broccoli florets
– 1 pumpkin
– 1 bunch swiss chard
– 1 fennel bulb

Herbs:
– 1 bunch garlic chives
– 1 bunch cilantro

Fruit:
– 1 lbs citrus fruit
– 1 lb loquat fruit

Small Box

Vegetables:

– 1 bunch celtuce
– 1 bunch assorted lettuce
– 1 bunch rainbow carrots
– 1 head cabbage
– 1 box spinach
– 1 bunch swiss chard

Herbs:
– 1 bunch garlic chives *not pictured

Fruit:
– 1 lb assorted citrus fruit (oranges and lemons)

Leafy Vegetables
In case your greens are wilted by the time you pickup your box, please follow these instructions:

– Fill a small bowl or tub with 1 inch of water
– Cut a 1/2 inch of the bottoms of the stems of your leafy greens
– Place greens, with stems down, into the bowl of water
– Leave the greens in the bowl overnight and by morning they should be rehydrated

Wrap your rehydrated greens in a towel and store the in the fridge. Summer greens like water spinach, moringa, and yam leaves don’t last long either way, so eat those as soon as you can.

Herbs
The best way to store your herbs so that they keep longer is to cut the stems a little and place them in a glass filled with about an inch of water. Cover the leaves loosely with a bag and keep them in the refrigerator. Replace the water inside when it gets cloudy. This works great with basil, mint, cilantro, parsley, and many other herbs.

Please feel free to share your recipes with us and also any storing tips you may have. 🙂

 

Farmers’ Note

Hello Growing Club & CSA members!

I’m going to start today’s note on serious subject. Late in 2016, we were informed that a developer had put forward a proposal for 14 townhome units on the property directly adjacent and south of our farm. This development poses several serious problems for the farm, and we have been organizing with our neighbors and our local community to oppose the development since we learned of it. In January, we had a very successful showing at the first Public Hearing on the project, with the Planning Commissioners asking the developer to respond to the communities concerns and come back in a few months with a new development plan. Well, the new development plan just came in, and it is almost exactly the same as the old one. The city has scheduled a new Public Hearing on the project for NEXT WEEK, Wednesday, April 12 at 7pm in the Pomona Council Chambers, and we are again organizing our community to oppose the development as it is. If you are available this day, and are willing to help, I ask that you join us and support the farm, our neighborhood, and our community. If you plan on attending, please email me directly at rishi@thegrowingclub.com and I will forward you details. Thank you in advance to those who can come.

Back to a happier note:
For me, the farm has long been a happy place. Unlike most people I know, I look forward to waking up early on Monday, because I know I’ll be out in the fields (okay maybe mostly the nursery right now) playing with my plant friends and our Farmer Trainees. If I’m away from the farm for even 3 days, I miss it and start longing to go back. It is only recently, however, that I’ve realized what a happy place the farm is to so many others, especially our Farmer Trainees. I love to hear the stories of little Sabi (the youngest of the Poareo family – see their Journal Entries below) waking up before everyone else on farm days because he is so excited to go to the farm. And I love the story Traci (see her Journal Entries below too) told me today about how she feels like she stands up straighter when she’s telling other about the farm. I love that Alexis is sharing her box with her friends (who said it has been the best CSA they’ve had 😉 ), and learning to eat all the vegetables she’s not familiar with. I know that not everyone will fall in love with our farm, and that many people today don’t even like going outdoors, but for our group of outcasts, it really is a special place where we can come to enjoy, learn, eat, work, and relax (often all at the same time). I really hope that everyone reading this can find the time to come and visit us, we’d love to send you home with some of our peace and joy (btw – there is a Coffee, Compost and Conversation at the farm this Saturday! A perfect time to visit).

Until next time,

Farmer Rishi
Founder/Director, The Growing Club

Photos of the Week

Farmer Trainee’s Journal

This week’s CSA Box

(Please click each item below for a larger photo, description, and preparation instructions.)

Notes for This Week’s Box

See the notes below about celtuce!
Tip: Use the swiss chard stalk the same way you would use celery in soups and stews.

Large Box

Vegetables:
– 1 bunch beets
– 1 bunch lettuce
– 1 cabbage head
– 1 bunch onion
– 1  bunch lacinato kale
– 1 bunch celtuce
– 1 bunch rainbow carrots
– 1 fennel bulb

Herbs:
– 1 bunch mint
– 1 bunch cilantro

Fruit:
– 2 lbs citrus fruit (oranges and lemons)

Small Box

Vegetables:

– 1 bunch celtuce
– 1 bunch red radishes
– 1 bunch lettuce
– 1 bunch beets
– 1 bunch lacinato kale
– 1 head broccoli/cauliflower/cabbage (brassica medley)

Herbs:
– 1 bunch cilantro

Fruit:
– 1 lb assorted citrus fruit (oranges and lemons)

Leafy Vegetables
In case your greens are wilted by the time you pickup your box, please follow these instructions:

– Fill a small bowl or tub with 1 inch of water
– Cut a 1/2 inch of the bottoms of the stems of your leafy greens
– Place greens, with stems down, into the bowl of water
– Leave the greens in the bowl overnight and by morning they should be rehydrated

Wrap your rehydrated greens in a towel and store the in the fridge. Summer greens like water spinach, moringa, and yam leaves don’t last long either way, so eat those as soon as you can.

Herbs
The best way to store your herbs so that they keep longer is to cut the stems a little and place them in a glass filled with about an inch of water. Cover the leaves loosely with a bag and keep them in the refrigerator. Replace the water inside when it gets cloudy. This works great with basil, mint, cilantro, parsley, and many other herbs.

Please feel free to share your recipes with us and also any storing tips you may have. 🙂

 

Farmers’ Note

Hello Growing Club & CSA members!

As I walk through the fields, I am struck by the absolute beauty of the farm that our community has conjured together. The vegetable fields are full of luscious produce, the fruit trees are setting their fruits (and more fruit trees are being planted), the chicken pasture is chest high in grass, the nursery is full of cute baby plant people, and to top it off, we have the most stunning flush of California poppies gracing our farm. After some months of turbulence and change, I am finding some peace in the gifts of our collective work and imagination. I am also full of gratefulness to all of those who support our farm: the Growing Club members who donate to our work on a monthly basis and are the base of support of our organization; the CSA members who enjoy our produce on a weekly basis; the Farmer Trainees who bring fresh eyes and willing hands to our soil. We have created a magical garden of enchantment that continues to surprise and astonish.

This month, this farm has also has a list of good news to share. First, we were successful in our grant application to the Fruit Guys Community Fund. We will receive $5,000 for a project to install fruit trees and perennial California native plants throughout the farm as an ecological hedgerow for attracting beneficial lifeforms and growing fruit. The fruit trees have already been purchased (see some photos on our Instagram) and are being planted now. Second, we flew by the 1,000lb harvest mark this month, harvesting 1,244 lbs of food from the farm (and we have two days to go!). We are on track to break last years 10,000 lb annual harvest record already! Third, our now 28-week Urban Farmer and Composter Training Program application is now open. The application is due by April 14, with the new class starting on May 8. Tell your friends, co-workers, nephews, nieces, cousins, and grandparents to apply! We are looking for those yearning to make a difference.

Until next time,

Farmer Rishi
Founder/Director, The Growing Club

Photos of the Week

Farmer Trainee’s Journal

This week’s CSA Box

(Please click each item below for a larger photo, description, and preparation instructions.)

Notes for This Week’s Box

See the notes below about celtuce!
Tip: Use the swiss chard stalk the same way you would use celery in soups and stews.

Large Box

Vegetables:
– 1 bunch beets
– 1 lettuce heads
– 1 broccoli head
– 1 bunch radishes
– 1  bunch chrysanthemum greens
– 1 bunch magenta spreen
– 1 bunch collards
– 1 head cauliflower

Herbs:
– 1 box parsley
– 1 garlic chives

Fruit:
– 2 lbs citrus fruit (oranges and lemons)

Small Box

Vegetables:
– 1 head broccoli
– 1 bunch red russian kale
– 1 head lettuce
– 1 bunch beets
– 1 bunch chrysanthemum greens
– 1 head cauliflower

Herbs:
– 1 bunch garlic chives

Fruit:
– 1 lb assorted citrus fruit (oranges and lemons)

Chrysanthemum Greens 

If you aren’t sure how to eat this tasty Asian green, click on the links below.
Chrysanthemum Greens with Sesame Seed Dressing
Quinoa with Chrysanthemum Greens, Preserved Lemons, and Toasted Walnuts
Other Crysanthemum recipes

Magenta Spreen

Use just like spinach! Magenta spreen is high in vitamin C and E.  The underside of the leaves and top of the new leaves are covered in a fine pink dust. Resist the temptation to wash it off as it is full of calcium and protein.  It contains even more protein than kale, which contains more than the recommended daily intake of protein.
Storage Instructions

Leafy Vegetables
In case your greens are wilted by the time you pickup your box, please follow these instructions:

– Fill a small bowl or tub with 1 inch of water
– Cut a 1/2 inch of the bottoms of the stems of your leafy greens
– Place greens, with stems down, into the bowl of water
– Leave the greens in the bowl overnight and by morning they should be rehydrated

Wrap your rehydrated greens in a towel and store the in the fridge. Summer greens like water spinach, moringa, and yam leaves don’t last long either way, so eat those as soon as you can.

Herbs
The best way to store your herbs so that they keep longer is to cut the stems a little and place them in a glass filled with about an inch of water. Cover the leaves loosely with a bag and keep them in the refrigerator. Replace the water inside when it gets cloudy. This works great with basil, mint, cilantro, parsley, and many other herbs.

Please feel free to share your recipes with us and also any storing tips you may have. 🙂

Jennifer’s Ayurveda Tip
Following a vata-balancing diet and routine throughout the winter, as it is Vata season. Vata qualities are dry, light, cold, rough, and Mobile. To pacify and help balance Vata favor sweet, sour, and salty foods. The diet should include plenty of fresh, warm, well cooked, and unctuous (oily) food as Vata is cold and dry.

Farmers’ Note

Hello Growing Club & CSA members!

Great news! Today we received word from the FruitGuys Community Fund that our grant application for a fruit tree and CA native perennial hedgerow project has been approved! What’s a hedgerow you ask? Well, before industrial farming took hold across America, farmers would keep strips of land surrounding their annual growing fields planted with native and perennial plants as areas for beneficial insect, bird and wildlife habitat. These habitat areas would attract life forms that would provide benefits to the main crop, and usually produce some kind of minor crop as well (squirrel meat anyone?). When Secretary of Agriculture Earl Butz encouraged farmers to industrialize in the 1970’s and plant from “fence row to fence row,” farmers removed these hedgerows to increase areas under main crop (corn, soy, canola, wheat, cotton, etc.) production. To make up for the pest control provided by hedgerows, farmers had to start spraying pesticides, herbicides, and fungicides instead. Now, as common sense makes its way back into farming, hedgerows are becoming popular again, and we are joining the movement to bring them back!

We have had hedgerows on the farm since we started, but we’ve primarily had them planted with annual wildflowers that only provide limited benefit during part of the year. With this grant, we now have $5000 to do our hedgerows right. We’ll be filling them up with over 30 fruit trees, planting the understory with over 200 California native perennial plants, and increase the variety of wildflowers that are growing. This is going to be a very exciting project for us and a real capstone to all of the work we have done at the farm up till now. It won’t be long until we have the trees and natives planted, so come by for a visit and check them out!

Also, check out the video we made as part of the grant application below:

 

Until next time,

Farmer Rishi
Founder/Director, The Growing Club

Photos of the Week

Farmer Trainee’s Journal

This week’s CSA Box

(Please click each item below for a larger photo, description, and preparation instructions.)

Notes for This Week’s Box

See the notes below about celtuce!
Tip: Use the swiss chard stalk the same way you would use celery in soups and stews.

Large Box

Vegetables:
– 1 swiss chard
– 2 lettuce heads
– 1 broccoli head
– 1 bunch turnips
– 1  celtuce stalk
– 1 box spinach
– 1 bunch sweet peas
– 1 head cauliflower

Herbs:
– 1 box watercress
– 1 bunch cilantro

Fruit:
– 2 lbs citrus fruit (oranges and lemons)

Small Box

Vegetables:
– 1 box spinach
– 1 celtuce stalk
– 1 bunch swiss chard
– 1 broccoli head
– 1 box sweet peas
– 1 arugula box *not pictured

Herbs:
– 1 box watercress

Fruit:
– 1 lb assorted citrus fruit (oranges and lemons)

celtuce 

  Ingredients:
-1 qt water or vegetable stock
-3 TB high quality unsalted butter
celtuce stalk
-salt to taste
-1/4 of lemon squeezedHow to prepare:
With a sharp knife, peel the stalk so the light green translucent part is showing. (celtuce tastes bitter raw so make sure to cook it first!)
Next bring 1 quart of water or vegetable stock to a boil. Add the celtuce and cook for 10-15 minutes, or until tender when pierced. (Do no over cook the celtuce – because it will fall apart!) Remove the celtuce from the water or broth and pat dry with a clean towel. Heat 3 TB high quality unsalted butter in a saute pan, when the butter begins to brown, add the peeled celtuce and cook When it begins to brown add the celtuce and cook, turning occasionally, until lightly browned on each side. Remove the celtuce from the pan and keep warm while you quickly cook the leaves, for about thirty seconds or until wilted. Place the wilted leaves on a plate, place celtuce stems on top of leaves. Add lemon to the remaining butter in the pan, swirl to warm through. Pour some of the lemon butter over the celtuce leaves and stem, add salt to taste,  and enjoy immediately.

Place the leaves on the plate, top with the celtuce stems, then add the lemon to remaining butter in the pan, swirl to warm through. Drizzle on some of the lemon butter and serve immediately, finishing with a touch of salt.

Storage Instructions

Leafy Vegetables
In case your greens are wilted by the time you pickup your box, please follow these instructions:

– Fill a small bowl or tub with 1 inch of water
– Cut a 1/2 inch of the bottoms of the stems of your leafy greens
– Place greens, with stems down, into the bowl of water
– Leave the greens in the bowl overnight and by morning they should be rehydrated

Wrap your rehydrated greens in a towel and store the in the fridge. Summer greens like water spinach, moringa, and yam leaves don’t last long either way, so eat those as soon as you can.

Herbs
The best way to store your herbs so that they keep longer is to cut the stems a little and place them in a glass filled with about an inch of water. Cover the leaves loosely with a bag and keep them in the refrigerator. Replace the water inside when it gets cloudy. This works great with basil, mint, cilantro, parsley, and many other herbs.

Please feel free to share your recipes with us and also any storing tips you may have. 🙂

Jennifer’s Ayurveda Tip
Following a vata-balancing diet and routine throughout the winter, as it is Vata season. Vata qualities are dry, light, cold, rough, and Mobile. To pacify and help balance Vata favor sweet, sour, and salty foods. The diet should include plenty of fresh, warm, well cooked, and unctuous (oily) food as Vata is cold and dry.

Farmers’ Note

Hello Growing Club & CSA members!

The beets are getting fat, we harvested 50 lbs of broccoli heads yesterday, and 50 pounds of sugar snap peas today. What does it all mean? It means spring has sprung baby! The nights and soil are warm, and the plants are beginning to pop like they’ve been drinking Spirulina flavored kombucha. This time is always exciting for us as farmers, as we love to see the fields bursting with produce (check out the photo of the single mutant-big romanesco below), but it also signals the beginning of the summer churn. From now on, we will be a in a race to keep up with our plant friends as they pump out their delicious goodies. The first set of zucchinni’s went in today, the tomato seedlings are 3 inches tall, and the peppers, eggplant, and okra are just popping up in the nursery. It is going to be a beautiful summer.

In other news, we are getting ready to celebrate the graduation of our previous class of Farmer Trainees (we got a bit late setting their graduation date). Invites have been sent out to all Growing Club Members, CSA Members, and past Farmer Trainees and we are grateful to celebrate the matriculation of another successful class. This class has had some real stars and we are excited to see where they take what they’ve experienced on our farm. Congratulations to Krysta, Cindy, Susan, Brooke, and Cecile!

We have also opened the application for the next round of our Farmer Training Program, which will start on May 8. Applications are due April 14 and can be found at the Farmer Training link in the menu above.

Until next time,

Farmer Rishi
Founder/Director, The Growing Club

Photos of the Week

Farmer Trainee’s Journal

This week’s CSA Box

(Please click each item below for a larger photo, description, and preparation instructions.)

Notes for This Week’s Box

See the notes below about celtuce!

Large Box

Vegetables:
– 1 bunch red russian kale
– 1 Sarvodaya (arugula) salad mix
– 1 broccoli head
– 1 bunch mibuna
– 1  celtuce stalk
– 1 bunch radishes and leaves
– 1 bunch sweet peas
– 1 Chioggia beets

Herbs:
– 1 box watercress
– 1 bunch cilantro

Fruit:
– 2 lbs citrus fruit (oranges and lemons)

Small Box

Vegetables:
– 1 Sarvodaya (arugula) salad mix
– 1 bunch celtuce
– 1 bunch assorted kale
– 1 bunch Chioggia beets
– 1 bunch mibuna
– 1 bunch mibuna

Herbs:
– 1 bunch cilantro

Fruit:
– 1 lb assorted citrus fruit (oranges and lemons)

celtuce 

  Ingredients:
-1 qt water or vegetable stock
-3 TB high quality unsalted butter
celtuce stalk
-salt to taste
-1/4 of lemon squeezedHow to prepare:
With a sharp knife, peel the stalk so the light green translucent part is showing. (celtuce tastes bitter raw so make sure to cook it first!)
Next bring 1 quart of water or vegetable stock to a boil. Add the celtuce and cook for 10-15 minutes, or until tender when pierced. (Do no over cook the celtuce – because it will fall apart!) Remove the celtuce from the water or broth and pat dry with a clean towel. Heat 3 TB high quality unsalted butter in a saute pan, when the butter begins to brown, add the peeled celtuce and cook When it begins to brown add the celtuce and cook, turning occasionally, until lightly browned on each side. Remove the celtuce from the pan and keep warm while you quickly cook the leaves, for about thirty seconds or until wilted. Place the wilted leaves on a plate, place celtuce stems on top of leaves. Add lemon to the remaining butter in the pan, swirl to warm through. Pour some of the lemon butter over the celtuce leaves and stem, add salt to taste,  and enjoy immediately.

Place the leaves on the plate, top with the celtuce stems, then add the lemon to remaining butter in the pan, swirl to warm through. Drizzle on some of the lemon butter and serve immediately, finishing with a touch of salt.

Storage Instructions

Leafy Vegetables
In case your greens are wilted by the time you pickup your box, please follow these instructions:

– Fill a small bowl or tub with 1 inch of water
– Cut a 1/2 inch of the bottoms of the stems of your leafy greens
– Place greens, with stems down, into the bowl of water
– Leave the greens in the bowl overnight and by morning they should be rehydrated

Wrap your rehydrated greens in a towel and store the in the fridge. Summer greens like water spinach, moringa, and yam leaves don’t last long either way, so eat those as soon as you can.

Herbs
The best way to store your herbs so that they keep longer is to cut the stems a little and place them in a glass filled with about an inch of water. Cover the leaves loosely with a bag and keep them in the refrigerator. Replace the water inside when it gets cloudy. This works great with basil, mint, cilantro, parsley, and many other herbs.

Please feel free to share your recipes with us and also any storing tips you may have. 🙂

Jennifer’s Ayurveda Tip
Following a vata-balancing diet and routine throughout the winter, as it is Vata season. Vata qualities are dry, light, cold, rough, and Mobile. To pacify and help balance Vata favor sweet, sour, and salty foods. The diet should include plenty of fresh, warm, well cooked, and unctuous (oily) food as Vata is cold and dry.

Farmers’ Note

Hello Growing Club & CSA members!
This morning I woke up to find the sun shining, and I finally had some sense that my world is coming back into order. It might just be that I’ve grown tired of the cloudy days and the rainy weather (4 months of clouds is far too long for this Socal born farmer), or it might be that the farm is coming out of a quirky adolescent stage. All winter we’ve been turning the farm upside down the new projects like the nursery, irrigation changes, bed extension and standardization, and mulching, and I’m beginning to finally see an end to these major renovations. We have also found our step with the new farmer training class, after an initial adjustment period getting used to the much larger class we took on this round.

All of these changes put some hep in my step today, and looking over the fields of gorgeous produce, I am feeling optimistic for the farm’s future. As we are the pioneers of modern urban farming in Los Angeles, we often find ourselves unsure of where we are heading and which direction to make our path, but for now we are held steady by the comfort of the beauty which we work to create and spread.

On a different note today, I’d like to share this video that was made at our farm by our friends at Kiss The Ground. They came by to the farm last week to ask me about soil, climate change, and the work that we are doing at Sarvodaya Farms, and made this beautiful video to share our message.

Until next time,

Farmer Rishi
Founder/Director, The Growing Club

Photos of the Week

Farmer Trainee’s Journal

This week’s CSA Box

(Please click each item below for a larger photo, description, and preparation instructions.)

Notes for This Week’s Box

See the notes below about celtuce!

Large Box

Vegetables:
– 1 bunch red russian kale
– 1 Sarvodaya salad mix
– 1 bunch broccoli
– 1 box yukina savoy
– 1  celtuce stalk
– 1 bunch broccoli
– 1 bunch collards
– 1 bunch mibuna

Herbs:
– 1 bunch bay leaves
– 1 bunch cilantro

Fruit:
– 2 lbs citrus fruit (oranges and lemons)

Small Box

Vegetables:
– 1 Sarvodaya salad mix
– 1 bunch broccoli
– 1 bunch broccoli
– 1 celtuce stock
– 1 bunch red russian kale
– 1 box yukina savoy

Herbs:
– 1 bunch bay leaves

Fruit:
– 1 lb assorted citrus fruit (oranges and lemons)

Storage Instructions
celtuce 
Both large and small boxes contain celtuce. If you’ve never eaten it before, don’t be intimidated by this delicacy!


  

Ingredients:
-1 qt water or vegetable stock
-3 TB high quality unsalted butter
celtuce stalk
-salt to taste
-1/4 of lemon squeezed

How to prepare:
With a sharp knife, peel the stalk so the light green translucent part is showing. (celtuce tastes bitter raw so make sure to cook it first!)
Next bring 1 quart of water or vegetable stock to a boil. Add the celtuce and cook for 10-15 minutes, or until tender when pierced. (Do no over cook the celtuce – because it will fall apart!) Remove the celtuce from the water or broth and pat dry with a clean towel. Heat 3 TB high quality unsalted butter in a saute pan, when the butter begins to brown, add the peeled celtuce and cook When it begins to brown add the celtuce and cook, turning occasionally, until lightly browned on each side. Remove the celtuce from the pan and keep warm while you quickly cook the leaves, for about thirty seconds or until wilted. Place the wilted leaves on a plate, place celtuce stems on top of leaves. Add lemon to the remaining butter in the pan, swirl to warm through. Pour some of the lemon butter over the celtuce leaves and stem, add salt to taste,  and enjoy immediately.

  Place the leaves on the plate, top with the celtuce stems, then add the lemon to remaining butter in the pan, swirl to warm through. Drizzle on some of the lemon butter and serve immediately, finishing with a touch of salt.

Leafy Vegetables
In case your greens are wilted by the time you pickup your box, please follow these instructions:

– Fill a small bowl or tub with 1 inch of water
– Cut a 1/2 inch of the bottoms of the stems of your leafy greens
– Place greens, with stems down, into the bowl of water
– Leave the greens in the bowl overnight and by morning they should be rehydrated

Wrap your rehydrated greens in a towel and store the in the fridge. Summer greens like water spinach, moringa, and yam leaves don’t last long either way, so eat those as soon as you can.

Herbs
The best way to store your herbs so that they keep longer is to cut the stems a little and place them in a glass filled with about an inch of water. Cover the leaves loosely with a bag and keep them in the refrigerator. Replace the water inside when it gets cloudy. This works great with basil, mint, cilantro, parsley, and many other herbs.

Please feel free to share your recipes with us and also any storing tips you may have. 🙂

Jennifer’s Ayurveda Tip
Following a vata-balancing diet and routine throughout the winter, as it is Vata season. Vata qualities are dry, light, cold, rough, and Mobile. To pacify and help balance Vata favor sweet, sour, and salty foods. The diet should include plenty of fresh, warm, well cooked, and unctuous (oily) food as Vata is cold and dry.

Farmers’ Note

Hello Growing Club & CSA members!

Time flies when you’re farming. Although it feels like our new class of Farmer Trainees just started their time on the farm, they are now on their 7th week with us, which means new assignments for everyone as they rotate through our system. Every 6 weeks, trainees are switched to a new focus on the farm, either management of fields, nursery, or chickens. This past Monday, our teams switched to a new focus, and we, the farm managers, began training the teams for their new assignments.

Each time we start on a new training cycle, I realize the most difficult part of training is to remember what you know that most people don’t. Since my mom and I have been gardening enthusiastically for several years, and farming seriously for nearly 3 years, we often forget that what we know isn’t common knowledge (I’m sure this is a problem in other fields as well). We have to be conscious about the vocabulary we use, the assumptions we have, and the level of comfort we have with certain tasks. I know Lynn definitely gets some strange looks when she asks new trainees to dump buckets of rotting food waste into piles of horse poop. Not a big deal for us who are used to it (and really enjoy it), but definitely a big deal to someone used to office work.

All that said, I feel like we doing a good job with the training, and we are getting better as we go. We are continually tweaking the program and as we develop as urban farming model towards financial sustainability, I feel confident that we will soon have trained farmers and a farm model that will bring many new small-scale regenerative farms into Southern California.
Until next time,

Farmer Rishi
Founder/Director, The Growing Club

Photos of the Week

Learning how to harvest garlic chives.

Farmer Trainee’s Journal

This week’s CSA Box

(Please click each item below for a larger photo, description, and preparation instructions.)

Notes for This Week’s Box

Large Box

Vegetables:
– 1 bunch red russian kale
– 1 Sarvodaya salad mix
– 1 head bok choy
– 1 bunch turnips
– 1  bag snap peas
– 1 bunch broccoli
– 1 swiss chard
– 1 bunch mibuna

Herbs:
– 1 bunch parsley
– 1 bunch cilantro

Fruit:
– 2 lbs citrus fruit (oranges from Sweet Tree Farms)

Small Box

Vegetables:
– 1 Sarvodaya salad mix
– 1 bunch broccoli
– 1 head bok choy
– 1 bunch red radish/turnip
– 1 bunch red russian kale
– 1 bunch carrot/potato

Herbs:
– 1 bunch watercress

Fruit:
– 1 lb assorted citrus fruit (oranges from Sweet Tree Farms)

Storage Instructions

Leafy Vegetables
In case your greens are wilted by the time you pickup your box, please follow these instructions:

– Fill a small bowl or tub with 1 inch of water
– Cut a 1/2 inch of the bottoms of the stems of your leafy greens
– Place greens, with stems down, into the bowl of water
– Leave the greens in the bowl overnight and by morning they should be rehydrated

Wrap your rehydrated greens in a towel and store the in the fridge. Summer greens like water spinach, moringa, and yam leaves don’t last long either way, so eat those as soon as you can.

Herbs
The best way to store your herbs so that they keep longer is to cut the stems a little and place them in a glass filled with about an inch of water. Cover the leaves loosely with a bag and keep them in the refrigerator. Replace the water inside when it gets cloudy. This works great with basil, mint, cilantro, parsley, and many other herbs.

Please feel free to share your recipes with us and also any storing tips you may have. 🙂

Jennifer’s Ayurveda Tip
Following a vata-balancing diet and routine throughout the winter, as it is Vata season. Vata qualities are dry, light, cold, rough, and Mobile. To pacify and help balance Vata favor sweet, sour, and salty foods. The diet should include plenty of fresh, warm, well cooked, and unctuous (oily) food as Vata is cold and dry.

Farmers’ Note

Hello Growing Club & CSA members!

I’m a little crunched for time today, since I have to prepare for a presentation tomorrow at the Farm Blitz Conference in Claremont. I did want to mention to everyone that The Growing Club received a wonderful award today from both the California Senate and California Assembly, recognizing our work in the field of waste management at our farm. As many of our know, our Composting Program at the farm diverted nearly 30,000 lbs of food waste from landfills last year. Compost Queen Lynn is truly a queen and we are so happy that her efforts are being recognized at a government level. I’ll be uploading some pictures of the award to our Instagram @thegrowingclub soon, so follow us and check it out! Enjoy your fresh produce this week, the radishes are really delicious!

Until next time,

Farmer Rishi
Founder/Director, The Growing Club

Photos of the Week

Farmer Trainee’s Journal

This week’s CSA Box

(Please click each item below for a larger photo, description, and preparation instructions.)

Notes for This Week’s Box

Large Box

Vegetables:
– 1 bunch red russian kale
– 1 Sarvodaya salad mix
– 1 bunch daikon greens
– 1 bunch carrots
– 1  bunch turnips
– 1 bunch broccoli
– 1 head bok choy
– 1 bunch lacinato kale

Herbs:
– 1 bunch watercress
– 1 bunch cilantro

Fruit:
– 2 lbs assorted citrus fruit (Blood oranges and lemons from Sweet Tree Farms)

Small Box

Vegetables:
– 1 Sarvodaya salad mix
– 1 bunch broccoli
– 1 head bok choy
– 1 bunch red radish/turnip
– 1 bunch red russian kale
– 1 bunch beets

Herbs:
– 1 bunch cilantro

Fruit:
– 1 lb assorted citrus fruit (Blood oranges and lemons from Sweet Tree Farms)

Storage Instructions

Leafy Vegetables
In case your greens are wilted by the time you pickup your box, please follow these instructions:

– Fill a small bowl or tub with 1 inch of water
– Cut a 1/2 inch of the bottoms of the stems of your leafy greens
– Place greens, with stems down, into the bowl of water
– Leave the greens in the bowl overnight and by morning they should be rehydrated

Wrap your rehydrated greens in a towel and store the in the fridge. Summer greens like water spinach, moringa, and yam leaves don’t last long either way, so eat those as soon as you can.

Herbs
The best way to store your herbs so that they keep longer is to cut the stems a little and place them in a glass filled with about an inch of water. Cover the leaves loosely with a bag and keep them in the refrigerator. Replace the water inside when it gets cloudy. This works great with basil, mint, cilantro, parsley, and many other herbs.

Please feel free to share your recipes with us and also any storing tips you may have. 🙂

Jennifer’s Ayurveda Tip
Winter is considered vata season. Winter means dampness, cold, wind, and dryness these conditions can imbalance your constitution. To pacify and balance your body you can eat heavier, oilier, and a more substantive diet. Favor sweet, sour, and salty foods. Eating seasonal vegetables that are well cooked, warm soft foods, that are well spiced will help keep you balanced.