At Home in Nature

  (Agate, Colorado)
TwoInTents Blog
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Le Menu (what's cookin'?)

NEWS FROM THE FARM AND RECIPES
The radishes are fruiting and the first wildflowers are ready!  The tomatoes are just beginning to flower and we have hopes that the year, off to a slow start, is finally getting underway!  This week also we have some interesting white oyster mushrooms to try, and delicious bean greens!  Garlic scapes are always a good idea, as are onion flowers and mustard.  Give them a try on your sandwhiches, mixed in with your mac and cheese (veggies and mac and cheese are actually quite good together!) or on your pizza!
We are beginning to plant the autumn crops!  Let us know the kinds of things you'd like and we'll plant them!
 
LOOK FOR:
>>>> New items
> Old items
 
Give us a call or an email if you want samples!  Let us do the cooking...Prepared meals available.
 
-- GOODIES --
>>>> Seasonal Tea Mix
>>>> Seasonal Salad Mix
>>>> Seasonal Bouquets
> Edible flowers (Alfalfa, YUCCA)
> Mushrooms from Amateur Mycology farm, wild mushroom hunter friends of ours (limited supply order early!)
> Olive Oil (imported from California - olives don't grow in Colorado, silly! We make sure there is no chemicals used, just like on our farm. It is very buttery oil, very sweet)
 > Sprouts - our own special method makes these tastier and more nutritious!
> Meat shares - from the Rev. Ronald Taylor's ranch.  These meats are from a neighbor of ours, he uses no hormones, and both grains and pastures the cows on natural feeds.  He raises holsteins.  In the hard economic times, he is adjusting his prices to allow microshares.  If there is more beef than expected, you can either pay the difference or return to him what you did not pay for! 
     * 1/2 Beef Share: $800 down, $4 per pound, plus share of processing
     * 1/4 Beef Share: $400 down, $4.50 per pound, plus share of processing
     * 1/8 Beef Share:  $200 down, $5 per pound, plus share of processing
      * 1/16 Beef Share: $100 down, $5.25 per pound, plus share of processing
       * 1/32 Beef Share: $50 down, $5.50 per pound, plus share of processing
 
-- VEGETABLES --
> Bean Greens
> Dandelion (also a blood cleanser herb)
> Fava greens (eat like chard, beet greens or pea greens)
> Green Quinoa
> Lambsquarter
> Lettuce
> Linden (leaves) (very sweet, sugar substitute)
> Radishes (ROOT, FRUIT)
> Salsify (leaves and roots and flowers)
> Sprouts (pea, bean, sunflower)
> Thistle (also a liver support herb)
 
-- BEANS --
  > Black
  > Fava
  > Jacob’s Cattle
  > Pinto
  > Trout
 
-- GRAIN --
  > Barley
  > Oats
  > Sanfoin
  > Safflower
  > Sunflower (SEED)
  > Rye
  > Wheat
 > Quinoa (GREEN)
 
-- HERBS --
  > Juniper (BERRIES)
  > Catmint
  > Garlic (BABY)
  > Garlic (GREENS)
  > Garlic (WILD)
  >>>> Garlic (SCAPES)
  >>>> Onion flowers
 
-- MEDICINE AND TEA --
  > Aspen (LEAVES, BARK) (antiinflamatory, pain relief, fever treatment)
  > Flax (FLOWERS) (great tea!)
  > Poplar (LEAVES, BUDS, ROOTS) (antiinflamatoryz, pain relief, fever treatment)
  > Pine (REALLY great tea!) (high in vitamin C and other vitamins and minerals - drink your vegetables per day!)
  > Willow (LEAVES, BUDS, ROOTS) (antiinflamatory, pain relief, fever treatment)
  > Yarrow
  > Yucca (ROOT, FLOWERS)
 
-- ANIMAL FEEDS --
  > Two legs 
  > Four legs
  > Six legs
  > Eight legs (?!)  :::: )
Tags:
 
 

Heavy or light hay?

A small bale of hay is 50 gallons of material, and sometimes, due to moisture content, density or other quality factors, the weight of the bale may differ.  Like a bushel, a small bale is a volumetric assessment.  Thus, it is often better to get “heavy” bales than “light” ones, because you are getting more hay for your money.

However, heavy bales are typically sold for more than light bales and the farmer who is buying hay must often do a per-pound analysis instead of a volumetric analysis.  If a heavy bale weighing 75 pounds is sold for $10 and a light bale weighing 25 lbs is sold for $10, the buyer of the light bale is paying an additional $1.75 per pound for hay.

Green hay is rarely sold: hay is typically dried.  However, a premium on fresh hay ought to be paid because it provides better nutrition to your animals and you do not require as much green hay as you do dried hay.  Paying twice as much for green would usually not be unreasonable.  If you buy green hay, however, make sure that it is very fresh, and buy frequently.  Old green hay that is not stored properly will quickly mold or ferment, which is not healthy for your animals.

Tags:

Ladybugs!

Coccinellidae is a family of beetles, known variously as ladybirds (UK, Ireland, Australia, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, South Africa, New Zealand, India, Malta, some parts of Canada and the US), or ladybugs (North America). Scientists increasingly prefer the names ladybird beetles or lady beetles as these insects are not true bugs. Lesser-used names include ladyclock, lady cow, and lady fly.

Not all ladybugs are red (other common colors are orange or yellow), and not all of them have spots; those that have spots may have one, several, or many.  The number and shape of spots indicates which species of ladybug it is.  There are over 450 species of ladybugs in the U.S. alone.

There are lots of myths around the world about ladybugs and their spots. Some have said that it indicates how old they are (a new spot for every year of age).  If a ladybug lands on you in Brussels, the spots on that ladybug tells you how many children you will have. Many farmers around the world have believed that the spots on a ladybug tells the fortune of the next harvest, if there are less than seven spots, the harvest will be good. Some people believe that if a ladybug lands on you, you can count the spots and you will soon receive dollars in the same amount as the spots.

Tags:

Russian olives in bloom again

The sweet smell of Russian olives can be noticed again, and the delicious flowers are about to set…well, not very delicious fruit.  However, now’s the best time to enjoy them on your table!  If you like the flowers, and I sure do, now’s a good time for bouquets too.

So surprise someone you love, and make them a fresh wild bouquet! Russian olive flowers, picked as entire branches from the tree, go great in bouquets with grasses.  Try picking a variety of grasses for interest, and especially look for brome grass.  If you can find some so late in the season, add some lilac branches with their wonderfully scented flowers.  The purple lilac and yellow Russian olives are lovely together. 

If you like the smell of the Russian olives, you may want to consider also making scented goodies with the flowers.  You can use the flowers to infuse soaps, candles, and other products with its fragrance.

Tags:

Insomnia has 3 cluster predictability

About this time of year, farmers begin to sleep a little better.  No risk of frost!  But there are many reasons why people lose sleep.  Analysis of insomnia by Doctors Vallières, Ivers, Beaulieu-Bonneau and Morin in their “Predictability of sleep in patients with insomnia” (Sleep. 2011 May 1;34(5):609-17) indicates that a 3-cluster predictability exists for the disease, indicating at least 3 classes of insomnia.

The Doctors explain “daily sleep diaries were completed for an average of 48 days and self-reported questionnaires once. Three nights were spent in the sleep laboratory for polysomnographic (PSG) assessment. Sleep efficiency, sleep onset latency, wake after sleep onset, and total sleep time were derived from sleep diaries and PSG. Time-series diary data were used to compute conditional probabilities of having an insomnia night after 1, 2, or 3 consecutive insomnia night(s). Conditional probabilities were submitted to a k-means cluster analysis. A 3-cluster solution was retained. One cluster included 38 participants exhibiting an unpredictable insomnia pattern. Another included 30 participants with a low and decreasing probability to have an insomnia night. The last cluster included 49 participants exhibiting a high probability to have insomnia every night. Clusters differed on age, insomnia severity, and mental fatigue, and on subjective sleep variables, but not on PSG sleep variables,” and conclude that “these findings replicate our previous study and provide additional evidence that unpredictability is a less prevalent feature of insomnia than suggested previously in the literature. The presence of the 3 clusters is discussed in term of sleep perception and sleep homeostasis dysregulation.”

The National Sleep Foundation's 2002 Sleep in America poll showed that 58% of adults in the U.S. experienced symptoms of insomnia a few nights a week or more.  The causes of insomnia are numerous, ranging from second hand marijuana to physical defects of the brain, but this study presents a new take on this common illness by reducing the number of ways that the body reacts to insomnia – either with more insomnia or less insomnia. 

Le Menu (what's cookin'?)

NEWS FROM THE FARM AND RECIPES
What a wet week at the farm!  With an inch of water puddling everywhere, the geese and ducks are enjoying themselves tremendously.  They go from puddle to puddle, trying each one.  They like the one in front of our home best because there *was* lambsquarter growing there.  They've eaten all they can without removing themselves from the puddle, and now are content to dabble in the mud.
Mud is very important for animals: it is a major source of minerals, and helps improve the flavor and quality of their products.  Humans naturally eat quite a bit of soil, too.  The dust on your veggies is nature's multivitamin!  And yes, even after being washed 5 times, there's still quite a bit of dust on your veggies.
This week, definately try YUCCA FLOWERS!  They have a very short season, but are one of the best treats of the year.  We've been enjoying them with oil, but there really is no bad way to have them.  If you're adventurous, give the wild mushrooms a try.  Lambsquarter is quickly ripening into Quinoa, and this is a good week to try GREEN QUINOA.  The FLAX FLOWERS are also nearly out of season, give them a try! 
Happy trails!
 
LOOK FOR:
>>>> New items
> Old items
 
Give us a call or an email if you want samples!  Let us do the cooking...Prepared meals available.
 
-- GOODIES --
>>>> Tea Mix
>>>> Salad Mix
>>>> Edible flowers (Alfalfa, YUCCA)
> Pennycress
> Mushrooms from Amateur Mycology farm, wild mushroom hunter friends of ours (limited supply order early!): this week, try the Bernardi, Wild Portabello, Oyster and Morrel
> Olive Oil (imported from California - olives don't grow in Colorado, silly! We make sure there is no chemicals used, just like on our farm. It is very buttery oil, very sweet)
 > Sprouts - our own special method makes these tastier and more nutritious!
> Meat shares - from the Rev. Ronald Taylor's ranch.  These meats are from a neighbor of ours, he uses no hormones, and both grains and pastures the cows on natural feeds.  He raises holsteins.  In the hard economic times, he is adjusting his prices to allow microshares.  If there is more beef than expected, you can either pay the difference or return to him what you did not pay for! 
     * 1/2 Beef Share: $800 down, $4 per pound, plus share of processing
     * 1/4 Beef Share: $400 down, $4.50 per pound, plus share of processing
     * 1/8 Beef Share:  $200 down, $5 per pound, plus share of processing
      * 1/16 Beef Share: $100 down, $5.25 per pound, plus share of processing
       * 1/32 Beef Share: $50 down, $5.50 per pound, plus share of processing
 
-- VEGETABLES --
> Dandelion (also a blood cleanser herb)
> Fava greens (eat like chard, beet greens or pea greens)
>>>> Green Quinoa
> Lambsquarter
> Lettuce
> Linden (leaves) (very sweet, sugar substitute)
> Radishes
> Spinach
> Salsify (leaves and roots and flowers)
> Sprouts (pea, bean, sunflower)
> Thistle (also a liver support herb)
 
-- BEANS --
  > Black
  > Fava
  > Jacob’s Cattle
  > Pinto
  > Trout
 
-- GRAIN --
  > Barley
  > Oats
  > Sanfoin
  > Safflower
  > Sunflower (SEED)
  > Rye
  > Wheat
 > Quinoa (GREEN)
 
-- HERBS --
  > Juniper (BERRIES)
  > Catmint
  > Garlic (BABY)
  > Garlic (GREENS)
  > Garlic (WILD)
  > Wild Onion (limited availability)
 
-- MEDICINE AND TEA --
  > Aspen (LEAVES, BARK) (antiinflamatory, pain relief, fever treatment)
  > Flax (FLOWERS) (great tea!)
  > Poplar (LEAVES, BUDS, ROOTS) (antiinflamatoryz, pain relief, fever treatment)
  > Pine (REALLY great tea!) (high in vitamin C and other vitamins and minerals - drink your vegetables per day!)
  > Willow (LEAVES, BUDS, ROOTS) (antiinflamatory, pain relief, fever treatment)
  > Yarrow
  > Yucca (ROOT, FLOWERS)
 
-- ANIMAL FEEDS --
  > Two legs 
  > Four legs
  > Six legs
  > Eight legs (?!)  :::: )
Tags:
 
 

BBQ Pizza

The Elbert County Fire Chiefs Association decided to reduce the Elbert County burn restriction to “Stage 2.”  The Elbert County Board of Commissioners made Ordinance 06-01 to approve this because conditions have improved with recent moisture levels. The restriction will run through September 30, 2011, when it will likely be renewed.

This does not mean that the threat of wildfire is gone, and caution is still required.  But, just in time for summer, Stage 2 returns the ability to use charcoal grills and campfires by approval through your fire department. So make sure to get a permit FIRST or the fines could be hefty.  Tell them you heard it from the Herald: if you invite them to your barbeque, you increase your chance of a permit!

Propane grills are legal to use without a permit, but for those loving the taste of wood, coal or other solid fuels, here’s some thing else in the news to think about.  BBQ Pizza.

Backyard chefs in Australia are likely to lay claim to inventing this, or at least are the very first to publish their results on the internet and other locations of avant guarde culinary science debate.  American chefs have been quick to pick it up, though, and now you can even buy frozen pizzas designed especially to fit on your barbeque.  Check out Home Run Inn Pizza – they just developed this June 1, last week.

Beyond the size issue, there is nothing in particular very special about a barbeque pizza.  It has all the same ingredients, but the manner of cooking it comes down to several fundamental choices. I’m not about to suggest which one is best for you, this is America, after all, and you are entitled to make bad choices. 

Just as with oven pizzas, it is important to cook the dough ahead of the toppings.  The key with barbeque pizza is to keep the lid CLOSED to emulate an oven.  Flip the dough four times to give the crust beautiful cross-hatched grill marks.  Some chefs do not like the char and will leave the pizza on a barbeque safe metal cooking pan or tray or paddle.  It would also be appropriate to consider using barbeque safe pottery or baking stones: these make the pizza extra crispy and crusty.  Paddles, trays, stones and pottery help cook the pizza more evenly

Removing the crust, apply your cheese and other toppings.  While, again, it would be improper of me to suggest toppings, if you are considering putting barbeque chicken or barbeque sauce on your barbeque pizza it is important to stop: you need to seek psychiatric help IMMEDIATELY.

It is important to cook the pizza on very high heat and quickly – this is the magic of barbeque pizza – so make sure you cut all your toppings VERY fine.  They’re not going to be in there long. 

BBQ Pizza

Serves 4 (makes 4 individual 7 inch pizzas or one large 13 inch pizza)

Ingredients

Pizza dough – homemade or premade crust

Pizza sauce:

        4 cups tomatoes, diced OR 1 can (12oz) tomato paste

        1 teaspoon basil

        1 1/2 teaspoon oregano

        ¼ to 1 teaspoon black pepper

        1/2 teaspoon tarragon

        1/2 teaspoon dill

        1 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

        1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

        Chili powder or fresh chili peppers, chopped (optional)

        Lemon or lime juice (optional)

Toppings:

        6 oz fresh Mozzarella cheese, grated or sliced (or  mix with other cheeses,  like cheddar or Swiss)

        2 to 3 cups mixed vegetables and fruits

Instructions

Preheat oven to 450 degrees.

Make the dough:  if homemade, follow directions until dough is rising.  If premade, skip this step.

While the dough rises, prepare the vegetables and sauce:  Clean and slice vegetables to 1/2 inch or less thickness.  Steam crunchy vegetables such as carrots and broccoli for 5 to 15 minutes, or until they begin to soften. 

Mix tomato paste with herbs and olive oil.  To keep the sauce from being too spicy for you, taste as you go.  Those who enjoy a lively pizza would do well to mix in some powdered chili pepper or pureed chili peppers to the sauce.  For an interesting twist, try adding in a twist of lime or lemon juice to the sauce!  If you have fresh herbs, try using them in the sauce instead of dried herbs, or just throw them on with the toppings! 

If making your own pizza crust: when the dough is ready, punch it down and divide it into four sections for individual pizzas, or leave it whole for a large pizza.  Prepare the pizza pan by oiling it with olive oil and dusting it with cornmeal.  Stretch the dough evenly across the pizza pan(s).  If desired, brush the dough with golden olive oil.  Bake for 5 to 7 minutes, until the dough is mostly cooked but before it starts to brown.  Remove from oven.

For either kind of crust: spread sauce on the crust, then cover with cheese and vegetables.  Grill on the barbeque at high heat, or until the cheese is melted and the crust is golden.

 

Tags:

Oxen alternative to beef

The use of cattle for beef and dairy is not unusual in Colorado, but the training of oxen for draft and pleasure is.  Oxen are typically employed on the Eastern seaboard, while mules have been popular a long time in the South.  Here in the west and on the Pacific seaboard, horses and oxen are used.  This regionalization of animals is not for any climatic adaptations, but because of the expenses of transporting animals and the native experience of the human inhabitants who trained them.

People keep using the animals they are used to as a rule, but breaking in an oxen market in Colorado is not difficult.  Besides being superior in nearly every way to draft horses, which are not as strong, gentle, intelligent or courageous as their cattle counterparts, oxen are hardy in more weather and sure footed in the typically dastardly Colorado mud.

Inexperience with oxen abounds.  Oxen are not a special breed of cow.  Any breed can be used, but only because of their cheapness, Holsteins are typical in the United States.  Bulls are more popular than steers, and steers are more popular than cows.  Bulls are so popular because people like to breed good oxen, and it is rather difficult to breed a steer (though with the miracles of modern veterinary medicine, it might be possible soon!).

Training a cow into an ox begins early, and it is best if they begin training before they are off milk.  Train them as you would a horse, and don’t be surprised when you don’t have to “despook” them.  Cows just don’t spook.  Also don’t be surprised if they learn how to do all their work before they are 6 months old: cows are much smarter than horses. 

Horses have the advantage of being faster than oxen, able to travel faster and further, plow more per hour and otherwise outperform the ox under ideal conditions, but the ox is better for more conditions and can pull heavier weight.

An ox is not driven from behind like a horse, but is led from in front.  Reigns are not used, but a wand (not a hard stick, but a gentle tapping device) is used to communicate left, right, faster and slower.  Oxen are very tactile creatures!  If you are going to use voice commands, they must be very clear and different from each other.

Sale prices of oxen in Colorado are typically twice that as on the East Coast.  A survey of oxen prices found that $5000 for a 3 year old team was not outrageous.  Asking $1000 for greenbroke 6 month old calves is not out of line.  Considering beef prices these days, it makes better sense to not castrate and train them up for the yoke!

Rise to your level of incompatance? er, competence? ability.

In another sign of a new age of business management theory, the Italians have independently rediscovered a principle of American and Japanese management theory, namely that managers should not be higher ranking positions than laborers.  Management is a separate trade than any other labor, and requires skill sets in statistics and human sciences.

Doctors Alessandro Pluchinoa, Andrea Rapisardaa, and Cesare Garofaloc in their The Peter principle revisited: A computational study (Physica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications, Volume 389, Issue 3, 1 February 2010, Pages 467-472) describe new evidence to support this theory of management:

 

“In the late sixties the Canadian psychologist Laurence J. Peter advanced an apparently paradoxical principle, named since then after him, which can be summarized as follows: ‘Every new member in a hierarchical organization climbs the hierarchy until he/she reaches his/her level of maximum incompetence’. Despite its apparent unreasonableness, such a principle would realistically act in any organization where the mechanism of promotion rewards the best members and where the competence at their new level in the hierarchical structure does not depend on the competence they had at the previous level, usually because the tasks of the levels are very different to each other. Here we show, by means of agent based simulations, that if the latter two features actually hold in a given model of an organization with a hierarchical structure, then not only is the Peter principle unavoidable, but also it yields in turn a significant reduction of the global efficiency of the organization. Within a game theory-like approach, we explore different promotion strategies and we find, counterintuitively, that in order to avoid such an effect the best ways for improving the efficiency of a given organization are either to promote each time an agent at random or to promote randomly the best and the worst members in terms of competence.”

 

The American / Japanese system requires that managers be hired separate from laborers, and that instead of promoting a person out of a job in which they excel, to increase their pay.  Or better, the pay of their team: no one is truly great without the help of their friends.  Punishment by decreasing pay is to be avoided, and managers are held responsible for maintaining productive efficiency and productive quality, not total output.  Total output is a function of labor and machinery and to increase total output requires more labor and more machines.

Under the new system, if a team or individual is discovered to be performing outside of statistically sound expectations, the management studies the matter and discovers why.  If they are performing for the worse, the causes of that performance is determined and corrected through assistance to the employee: firing employees is a last resort in the new management because, statistically, you are not going to be finding a better qualified or motivated employee, and when the fear of being fired is removed, performance increases.  If they are performing better than expected, they are rewarded and, if especially good at their job, employed to teach others how to do their jobs better.

A new use for veggies

Can't stand any more greens?  You can make paper out of the vegetables in your garden. Here’s how, from ehow.com:

1.        Thinly slice the vegetables. The slices can be 0.5 cm to 0.2 inch thick. You can choose from a variety of vegetables like carrot, cucumber, squash, ginger root, potato, radish, turnip or beet.

2.        Arrange the slices to form a thin layer between two sheets of tissue paper. Overlap the slices so that there are no open spaces.

3.        Place the sheets of vegetable and tissue in a microwave. They should lie flat on the base of the microwave.

4.       Put some microwave safe heavy object like a glass baking dish on the sheets. This will prevent the vegetable parchment paper from curling. 

5.        Heat on high for 1 minute. This will leave the tissue paper wet. Thicker slices of vegetable will need more heat.

6.        Remove the sheets from the microwave, and let the vegetable layer breathe for a minute. Replace the wet tissue paper with fresh paper.

7.        Repeat steps 3 to 6 until the tissue paper is almost dry.

8.        Replace the tissue paper once more. Place the sheets between layers of old newspaper. Let the whole thing stand for a few days on a flat surface with some weight on it.

9.        Replace both the tissue paper and newspaper once daily until the vegetable parchment paper is completely dry.

New uses for grain bins!

Most people look at grain bins as excellent places to store grain.  Not architect Richard Gillies.  In his The Adaptation of a Thunder Bay Grain Elevator (2011, Dalhousie University, Nova Scotia) he undertook to understand how best to convert a grain bin into a home.  “Informed by research into the history, function, and construction of grain elevators, this investigation develops an approach to adaptation that would inhabit the interior spaces while preserving the sense of wonder and intrigue inherent in these structures. Using a program defined only as the most basic requirements for habitation, spatial possibilities are investigated to augment the aesthetic, monumental, and mysterious qualities of the structure, without domesticating it.”

After beginning with an understanding of the history and purpose of grain bins, Gilles understands their essential aspects, reaching nearly poetic qualities in his thesis: “The history of grain elevators can be traced back to Buffalo, New York in 1842, when entrepreneur Joseph Dart and engineer Robert Dunbar constructed the first grain elevator. This was a wooden structure which housed the elevator and a series of bins.  The heart of the new invention – a looped or ‘never ending’ conveyor belt, made out of canvas, upon which large buckets made out of iron had been attached at regular intervals; the whole thing enclosed within a long, straight rectangular box made out of wood and iron… (Brown 2009, 109) It was not until 1883 that the Canadian Pacific Railway constructed the first grain elevator in Thunder Bay (Vervoort 1982, 30), known as the King’s Elevator. This marked the first time that grain from the prairies could take an all-Canadian route to the eastern ports. Prior to 1883 grain was moved south through American routes (Vervoort 1990, 404). The Lakehead grain trade rapidly expanded in the following decades.”

He discovered other adaptations of grain bins, including the transformation of them into a giant musical organ, as a projection screen for outdoor art and movies, and also the transformation of them into residential lofts.  The transformation of the former Quaker Oats bin in Akron, Ohio, into Quaker Square inspired him.  There, the essential nature of the bin was kept, while allowing for new use.  The challenge of transforming storage areas and mechanical areas into habitable areas is no small task!

He begins by opening up the interior with light through slits in the metal siding, and carving out the interior of the storage bins to create a cathedral atmosphere, literally enshrining the essence of the original bin.  “Through a process of first subtraction (demolition) and then addition (construction), I have modified the existing concrete structure to include new interior spaces that enhance the sense of scale and add qualities of light…by emphasizing the qualities of space, introducing minimal program, then exploring and representing adaptations that augment the monumental and mysterious. Hopefully this thesis has revealed new spatial experiences that inspire further program options for abandoned grain elevators beyond the usual condominiums and hotels.”

 
 

Le Menu (what's cookin'?)

NEWS FROM THE FARM AND RECIPES
MUSHROOM season is again upon us!  Hooray!  One of our farmer friends raises mushrooms and it is warm enough for Oyster mushrooms.  Place your orders early, there is a limited supply.  He raises them with no chemicals, in clean organic media.  He has a unique Hawaiian variety, a pink oyster.
 
Try them with lambsquarter and sunflower for a rare treat!  Or radishes and spinach if you feel more traditional.  They are actually quite good with thistles if you are adventurous. 
 
PENNYCRESS is in season and it looks like it will be a short one this year, so hop and give it a try!  Alfalfa flowers are also just beginning to bloom!
 
The chicks and ducklings are mixing with the older birds and are getting along just fine.  One of the young roosters likes to explore a ways!  The goats (who are kind enough to turn our weeds into fertilizer) got some big treats this week when their favorite grasses began to put out seed. 
 
The blackbirds are playing all day in our trees and the weather has been beautiful!  We watch with anticipation the young apples ready to swell up, and the asparagus putting out flowers.  With the first mosquitoes of the season, we are beginning to wear our mosquito netting again...
 
The tomatoes are just beginning to flower, and so are the potatoes!  It won't be long before both are ready.
 
LOOK FOR:
>>>> New items
> Old items
 
Give us a call or an email if you want samples!  Let us do the cooking...Prepared meals available.
 
-- GOODIES --
>>>> Edible flowers (Alfalfa)
>>>> Pennycress
>>>> Mushrooms from Amateur Mycology farm (limited supply order early!)
> Olive Oil (imported from California - olives don't grow in Colorado, silly! We make sure there is no chemicals used, just like on our farm. It is very buttery oil, very sweet)
 > Sprouts - our own special method makes these tastier and more nutritious!
> Meat shares - from the Rev. Ronald Taylor's ranch.  These meats are from a neighbor of ours, he uses no hormones, and both grains and pastures the cows on natural feeds.  He raises holsteins.  In the hard economic times, he is adjusting his prices to allow microshares.  If there is more beef than expected, you can either pay the difference or return to him what you did not pay for! 
     * 1/2 Beef Share: $800 down, $4 per pound, plus share of processing
     * 1/4 Beef Share: $400 down, $4.50 per pound, plus share of processing
     * 1/8 Beef Share:  $200 down, $5 per pound, plus share of processing
      * 1/16 Beef Share: $100 down, $5.25 per pound, plus share of processing
       * 1/32 Beef Share: $50 down, $5.50 per pound, plus share of processing
 
-- VEGETABLES --
> Dandelion (also a blood cleanser herb)
> Fava greens (eat like chard, beet greens or pea greens)
> Lambsquarter
> Lettuce
> Linden (leaves) (very sweet, sugar substitute)
>>>> Radishes
> Spinach
> Salsify (leaves and roots and flowers)
> Sprouts (pea, bean, sunflower)
> Thistle (also a liver support herb)
 
-- BEANS --
  > Black
  > Fava
  > Jacob’s Cattle
  > Pinto
  > Trout
 
-- GRAIN --
  > Barley
  > Oats
  > Sanfoin
  > Safflower
  > Sunflower (SEED)
  > Rye
  > Wheat
 
-- HERBS --
  > Juniper (BERRIES)
  > Catmint
  > Garlic (BABY)
  > Garlic (GREENS)
  > Garlic (WILD)
  > Wild Onion (limited availability)
 
-- MEDICINE AND TEA --
  > Aspen (LEAVES, BARK) (antiinflamatory, pain relief, fever treatment)
  > Flax (FLOWERS) (great tea!)
  > Poplar (LEAVES, BUDS, ROOTS) (antiinflamatoryz, pain relief, fever treatment)
  > Pine (REALLY great tea!) (high in vitamin C and other vitamins and minerals - drink your vegetables per day!)
  > Willow (LEAVES, BUDS, ROOTS) (antiinflamatory, pain relief, fever treatment)
  > Yarrow
  > Yucca (ROOT)
 
-- ANIMAL FEEDS --
  > Two legs 
  > Four legs
  > Six legs
  > Eight legs (?!)  :::: )
Tags:
 
 

New agricultural newspaper

I am so proud to announce that the agricultural and nature newspaper which I assist in editing has now an online edition!  You ought to check it out... www.themeadowlarkherald.com 

Besides covering agriculture, nature science, art and the latest academic news, local politics and news is covered too.  Farming and gardening is made easier with information and news! 

Let me know what you think?

 
 

A great book!

Read this book!  Combining natural farming and traditional agriculture with the latest in scientific research may seem like a difficult thing, but farming and gardening hasn't ever been easier.  Less work, less cost, more production!  This book has great lessons for the non-gardener, too: from labor management to marketing, from physics and chemistry to training draft horses and oxen, there's something on the farm for every interest.

http://www.amazon.com/Hoeing-Husbandry-Jethro-Brachfeld-ebook/dp/B0041OSBPW

The best book to learn about farming and gardening (or to learn a few new tricks if you're a life long farmer or gardener) is to go to the source: Jethro Tull's Horse Hoeing Husbandry, the first, and still the best, book on modern scientific agriculture, updated with modern learning and combined with the important lessons of Fukuoka.  It's available on Kindle for just under $2.  Just follow the link!

The book teaches you how to farm and garden better - and the science behind why. 

Covering everything from labor management, soil science to harvesting and marketing, from training draft animals to training better roosters, the most basic algae to the most complex agroecology, the history of agriculture gains new relevance when updated with modern science.

Le Menu (what's cookin'?)

NEWS FROM THE FARM AND RECIPES

While out on wild harvests we saw lark buntings again playing in the warm eveningtime.  The weather has finally warmed up (maybe because we finally built shelters for our plants?) and the birds (domestic and wild) are staying up late making up for lost time. 

Our ducklings met our chicks for the first time, and are simply terrified of them!  The chicks, oblivious to the terror they inspire, attempt to be friendly with the ducks with a fun chase game!  They are doing better together now that they've known each other for a few days.

The lambsquarter season is winding up, so make sure you get some before we're out! We've got domestic spinach now, but that's just not the same.  Flax flowers are not to be missed, and neither are the summertime willow leaves.  Beans are sprouting, so expect bean greens soon!  Yum!

If you've not yet, try our pine tea and our tea mixes!  Great with an ice cube for hot summer days, or steaming hot in the cool summer nights.

LOOK FOR:

>>>> New items

> Old items 

 

Give us a call or an email if you want samples!  Let us do the cooking...Prepared meals available.

 

-- GOODIES --

> Eggs (Duck) - LIMITED AVAILABILITY ORDER EARLY!

> Olive Oil (imported from California - olives don't grow in Colorado, silly! We make sure there is no chemicals used, just like on our farm. It is very buttery oil, very sweet)

 > Sprouts - Greenhouse is being used to shelter tomatoes and peppers, so please order one week in advance

> Meat shares - from the Rev. Ronald Taylor's ranch.  These meats are from a neighbor of ours, he uses no hormones, and both grains and pastures the cows on natural feeds.  He raises holsteins.  In the hard economic times, he is adjusting his prices to allow microshares.  If there is more beef than expected, you can either pay the difference or return to him what you did not pay for! 

     * 1/2 Beef Share: $800 down, $4 per pound, plus share of processing

     * 1/4 Beef Share: $400 down, $4.50 per pound, plus share of processing

     * 1/8 Beef Share:  $200 down, $5 per pound, plus share of processing

      * 1/16 Beef Share: $100 down, $5.25 per pound, plus share of processing

       * 1/32 Beef Share: $50 down, $5.50 per pound, plus share of processing

 

-- VEGETABLES --

> Dandelion (also a blood cleanser herb)

> Fava greens (eat like chard, beet greens or pea greens)

> Lambsquarter

>>>> Lettuce

> Linden (leaves) (very sweet, sugar substitute)

>>>> Spinach

>>>> Salsify (leaves and roots and flowers)

> Sprouts (pea, bean, sunflower)

> Thistle (also a liver support herb)

 

-- BEANS --

  > Black

  > Fava

  > Jacob’s Cattle

  > Pinto

  > Trout

 

-- GRAIN --

  > Barley

  > Oats

  > Sanfoin

  > Safflower

  > Sunflower (SEED)

  > Rye

  > Wheat

 

-- HERBS --

  > Juniper (BERRIES)

  > Catmint

  > Garlic (BABY)

  > Garlic (GREENS)

  > Garlic (WILD)

  > Wild Onion (limited availability)

 

-- MEDICINE AND TEA --

  > Aspen (LEAVES, BARK) (antiinflamatory, pain relief, fever treatment)

 >>>> Flax (FLOWERS) (great tea!)

  > Poplar (BUDS, ROOTS) (antiinflamatory, pain relief, fever treatment)

  >>>> Pine (REALLY great tea!) (high in vitamin C and other vitamins and minerals - drink your vegetables per day!)

  > Willow (BUDS, ROOTS) (antiinflamatory, pain relief, fever treatment)

  >>>> Yarrow

  > Yucca (ROOT)

 

-- ANIMAL FEEDS --

  > Two legs 

  > Four legs

  > Six legs

  > Eight legs (?!)  :::: )

Tags:
 
 
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