It is that time of year again, and thankfully we do not have 3 feet of snow to hinder our efforts to host a seed saving hands-on workshop on the farm November 11 (after 11) until 4:30 and Saturday November 12 from 12 to 5. I welcome you to participate as we will learn about seed saving and storage, with real life examples of all the things saved and dried this year and how to harvest them. This course is part of the Organic Master Gardeners series I teach in Stony Plain every year and worth about $150. So I am offering it free of charge as you will be helping me with the work and in return gaining valuable knowledge and life skills. I would suggest you register with me anyway so I know who to expect.
Send an email to Denise – smileyo at xplornet dot ca
Make sure and spell that correctly and put seed workshop in the title.
If you only have part of the day to offer that is fine, I just need to know. We will meet at the farm and divide into work stations and rotate around so everyone learns about the different aspects of seed harvest, cleaning, storage and so on.
Hope to see you here. We will potluck a late lunch each day at about 1. Bring your favorite snacks or whatever. Thanks everyone!
Some of you have called requesting prices for potatoes and garlic. Remember that the email is not sent to the right address if you don’t use smileyo at xplornet dot ca. The email cannot be sent through the contact us link. Somehow it goes to my old email and I cannot access that anymore.
Thanks everyone. I have only Hutterite Purple, Russian Red and Music available this year as the weeds got the rest of the batch. They are $4 a bulb. Let me know soon, as I am planting out the bulk of it this next week.
Potatoes available for $.50 a lb if you order 50 lb or more, prices vary less than that. We have many Linzer Delikatesses, which are a very nice white skin, yellow moist flesh large fingerling type for excellent home fries, boiling for potato salad all winter long and Italian style bakers. We also have large French Fingerlings which are huge, and make good bakers, boiling and french fries. Red skin and white flesh. We have lots of Russian Blues (all purple throughout) good for baking, storage, boiling for purple mashed potatoes and potato salads. We also have some Nikolas which are the new Low Glycemic potatoes for diabetics and those concerned about sugar content in potatoes. We have Wendy’s purple which are a nice sized baking and boiling potato, purple skin and lighter purple than Russian Blue in the flesh. We have some very hard to find varieties also like, Bliss Triumph (red skin, white flesh, excellent flavor), Crotte de Doubs ( long fingerling, large sized, somewhat crescent shaped purple skin and white flesh), Irish Cobbler (white skin, white flesh keeper, baking, boiling), Lukes Bush Cobbler, similar to Irish Cobbler, but for smaller gardens, All Reds (red in and out for pink mashers and baking). Remember that all the colored potatoes have the same potato flavor and more antioxidant content than regular potatoes. We have Rokos (red skin, white flesh) , Sante (white skin, white flesh) and Sangre (red skin, white flesh). Also Rays Russian and Warba (white skin, pink eyes, white flesh excellent flavor multipurpose potatoes). If you want to try a new kind or a mixed bag we can definitely accommodate that. And if you want a trip out to the farm for old fashioned potato harvesting days, come on out and we will make a day of it. We have carrots, green onions, parsley, turnips, parsnips, garlic, kale and chard still in the garden, and Pumpkins and Blue Hubbard squash also, so get all your fall harvest at once. I have also some tomatoes for canning. Give us a call ahead 780-785- two six two two. Thanks to all, and happy Thanksgiving!!
See what we have been doing…
We presented at the Cultivating Connections Forum in Edmonton in February, with Michael Moore and others on Local food Innovations talking about food resiliency through local seed and local food from it. Great minds, working together for local food security.
Hello all you avid gardeners.
Wanted to let everyone know that we have been working all summer at various indoor and outdoor pursuits and have scarcely had time to breathe let alone be on the internet, but I have missed all of you and wanted to touch base.
We had a market gardening endeavor this year and produced a beautiful garden for our new CSA members and loaded them up with garden fresh produce all summer long delivered weekly into Edmonton. We had a large hail event half way through the summer that dampened things a bit, but we recovered most of the garden produce and continued on. However, my partners got a little carried away growing potatoes and trying out the new potato planter and therefore we have about a million pounds of spuds that are just waiting for someone to speak up for them. We are offering 25 and 50 lb. bags for delivery into an Edmonton location for anyone who wants a constant supply of the best tasting spuds this side of the Rockies….. ok, they are awesome potatoes and please help us out by taking some off our hands. We are offering them at a discounted price. We have Yukon Gold, Russet, Norlands, Linzer fingerlings, and many other kinds. We can make a special mixed bag for loads of fun and colorful meals. The fingerlings are especially wonderful and make awesome home fries because you don’t have to peel the skins and just add olive oil and italian herbs, coat and bake in the oven – YUMMY.
The seed garden suffered a little due to the time constraints, but we do have several new kinds of cucumbers, corn and turnips on the go, beets and carrots and some squash. Our hope is to see all of you at the seedy events in the spring and hear from you via email about how your garden grew this year and what your successes and trials were. I like to stay in touch and know what everyone is experiencing. So keep in touch. My direct email is smileyo at xplornet dot ca, and I have not been able to change the direct link in the contact us button, so please do not send emails through that link as it is an old email address and I do not get it. Sorry.
We are fully certified organic this year, so that is exciting and I am still hoping to build on the CSA idea and have people come stay on the farm and learn gardening, cooking, animal care, wild crafting, old country skills, survival skills and all the other blessings of country life first hand. That is my dream to encourage people to grow their own food, find their own food in nature and know what to do with it. So contact me if you are interested. There were so many wild saskatoons, chokecherries, pincherries, Blueberries and other fruits out there that I hope you all took advantage of it.
Of course some areas were ravaged by wildfire and drought this year and that was devastating. The Hurricanes in various parts of the world were also equally destructive. It is to be expected and prepared for. Tough to say, but it is a sign of the state of the world. But we can do something about it, every day and through out actions directly. Support the world you want to see and not just through rote action. I bless all of you to find what brings you peace and joy and pursue a world that brings the same to all.
Well, it seems that this might be a wet year, all things considered, and so as some of you are still awaiting Jerusalem Artichoke tubers, I may have to refund some money as they are not happy with the wet ground last fall and the wet spring. In such conditions disease abounds and I am still reviewing the survival of the existing tubers. Ideally I would like to wait until the ground completely dries out or at least dries to the point where I can actually step into the patch without losing my rubber boots! I will check on them and forward as I can, but it might be a case of wait and see.
There is still time to get potatoes to plant, again you will want to delay planting til the ground is a little on the warm side or your seed may rot in the ground. It is one of those years. If the ground is too cold, things like potatoes, onions, and even peas will rot instead of sprouting. That is our issue in Alberta clay, the ground takes a while to warm and in a wet year it is especially difficult.
I have been reading a book called “the Intelligent Gardener” by Steve Solomon of the Territorial Seed Company. The book It talks a lot about the effect of micronutrients on the quality of the soil and goes beyond organic matter and compost. I highly recommend it for a gardener with any size of plot. It will explain all the minute details about soil amendments to create nutrient rich foods which are what we want. Produce can look great but not taste great or plants are prone to disease. We want to feed our bodies with plants that not only look and taste great, but are able to absorb a host of micronutrients from the soil so that we can heal, and restore our health. If it is not in the soil, it is not in the plants and it will not be in you. We are running to more food, searching for the nutrition that is no longer in the food. Supplements will help, but they are no match for bioavailable nutrition in plant foods. These nutrients are in a form that is easily digestible and absorbable. I think that the reason people are overeating is that they are craving these nutrients and looking for it in hollow foods.
Anyway, it is a great read. Focus on soil testing, and minor amendments, and humus, which is a fibrous leftover from the breakdown of organic material, and is able to grab hold of and store all kinds of valuable nutrients in the soil and make them available for plants. Modern farming techniques only focus on adding back into the soil nitrogen, potassium and phosphorus, but we need more than that, and although NPK fertilizers grow good looking plants, the taste and value are not up to what we need to be healthy. Amendments in the range of what Solomon outlines are very inexpensive and create dramatic results.
So, now is the time. All of Solomon’s resources are available as PDF downloads online, as he is about education and not money. Search here
It is in line with what I have been thinking and also mentions that if you have thick clay that sticks to your boots it might be an issue of too little Calcium, which kind of fits with what I have learned through other resources. Anyway, going to give that a shot. As well as build some great organic mulch beds for trees. Those are our plans.
We have one or two more seedy events to attend. We will be at the Edmonton Resiliency Festival this Saturday, Festival Details, and tickets and I will talk about Sourcing Local food and seeds and how to sustain yourself in the face of climate change. I will be talking about seed coops and food hubs in and around the city. Details as on the website:
Learn about local initiatives and how to participate in local food through sourcing seeds grown locally. This enables greater resilient in the face of changing weather conditions. This workshop will touch on building local food coops, how to contact local growers in your area, and building community through backyard gardens.
Denise O’Reilly, Garden of Eden A’Bunadh Seeds
Pay What You Can ($5.00 Minimum)
Waldorf Independent School of Edmonton – Willow Room
7211 96a Ave NW, Edmonton, AB
We will also be there with our partners in Grown Near Home, the CSA and offering information there or you can come buy your share. See Home Page
That is Saturday the 22nd. Earth day! Yay, just in time.
Then the following weekend, we will be attending the 2nd Annual Seedy Saturday in Lac La Biche Alberta, at the Agrena… hosted by Ty, Janice and Jolene of Sand Springs Ranch.
who have been fantastic suppliers of fresh produce in Lac La Biche for years. They ran a CSA last year and are doing so again. Come out and see what is happening there. We will have the seeds and there are many workshops. And it is just in time for planting in the North. Hope to see you there.
Just a quick note to anyone who might be interested or know someone who might not be able to grow their own garden but would like access to fresh, farm-direct food this summer, the time is now to reserve a spot in our farm-direct produce CSA. All the information can be found at grownnearhome.ca.
In order to plan for how many families we will be growing for this summer, we need to hear from you or your interested family and friends soon. We are hoping to also help some of the less fortunate in your community and you can help by getting people involved. In exchange for being a community organizer or drop off location we will either reduce the cost of your share (with 8 or more others referred), or donate a share to your community or charity of your choice. This helps everyone. We also need to know who is on board to begin organizing local drop off locations for the weekly produce bags.
Imagine, enjoying fresh new potatoes, carrots, peas, and greens among other things, the way nature intended them to taste, and at the same time, build community and support each other. We hope you find that as exciting as we do. We are planning now, so let us know your interested by visiting grownnearhome soon.
Just to let you know we have completed part of our seed sales, but will be going to Red Deer tomorrow for the EcoLiving fair at the Red Deer College. Then we have a few weekends off for planting seeds and getting bedding plants ready to go for the Community Supported Agriculture or CSA shares (info at grownnearhome.com) and then I will also be speaking and having the seeds at the Edmonton Resiliency Festival on April 22.
From there we go to Lac La Biche to their Seedy Saturday on April 29. So if you are in that area, come down and see us there. Again, if anyone wants potatoes they are still available and better pre-ordered.
We have sold out on some items, so email smileyo at xplornet dot ca or abunadhseeds at gmail dot com for information.
Thanks so much to everyone who ordered seeds and were interested in the seed collection we took over for Mandy from Mandy’s Greenhouse in Manitoba. Her collection is extensive so if you are interested in our growers cooperative and taking on some of the tomatoes to refresh seeds, contact me. I need people who will be committed to saving seeds and returning them to me. Thanks again,
CSA’s are a form of farming in relationship with people looking for fresh local food, who can partake in a share of the farm and the farmers producing local food. I am joining 2 other couples in my area to grow fresh produce for interested individuals and families. CSA means Community Sponsored or Community Supported Agriculture. It is a wonderful model which allows local farmers to be in a positive cash flow position going into the production season, when typically costs are high, so they can plan effectively to grow all the food for the people participating in the share program. Without this, farmers cannot plan food production effectively, and in this model it allows us to target our wonderful, fresh goodies to all those that want a closer relationship to their farmer and their food.
What we plan to offer is a full range of seasonal, fresh produce and other things, familiar and sometimes unfamiliar as well as exciting, tasty ways to prepare them at home in a jiffy. Full shares will feed 2-4 people per week and half shares are for 2 people. We will also offer other produce such as pickling cukes or other things for those that want to do their own home preserving.
If any of you are interested, we are going in on a plan to grow fresh veggies and produce for people in the West end of Edmonton or bedroom communities extending West of the city out to about Onoway, or Alberta Beach. We are hoping to have one community drop off per area so are encouraging neighbors to come together to have shares dropped off either at their homes or at their workplace to help us spend less time on the road and more time growing fresh, local goodness for your share bags every week. We encourage you and 8 or so of your friends to get together and purchase a share in our CSA for the upcoming 2017 season. In exchange for operating as coordinator you will receive a discount on your share. We also encourage each community to sponsor a gift share if they are interested which we will donate to a local seniors facility or food bank to share the good food in a more community inspired way.
We are taking early bookings up until April 15. Shares are offered in full and half share prices. CSA bags will consist of 8-10 items in half shares, and 12 to 15 in full share bags. Half shares are $27 per week, and full shares are $45 for a 12 week season from June 29 to September 29, or about 12 weeks. Half the cost of the shares are due up front to secure your spot for the growing season by April 15 (total $324 – so 1/2 is $162 for the half share, and total for a full share is $540, with half due of $ 270 by April 15). The balance of the share is due upon the first delivery or by June 28. We will pick produce on Wed. and Thursday mornings weekly and will deliver on Thursday each week. Shareholders can expect to keep in touch with us via a weekly e-newsletter that will outline the produce expected in the share and recipes and ideas for the use of the veggies also.
Space is limited, so if you are interested, please contact Lana at 780-953-9725 soon. Thanks everyone.
Our goal in this endeavor is to start a local food hub which will expand and grow to help consumers get more involved in local food and eating healthy, enabling people to take control of their health and well being and promote local food and reduce the carbon foot print of food. We are also passionate about getting more people involved in changing the way we think about food, explore the local environment around them in relation to food and health and the environment. Hope you will explore food with us and continue to find the joys of life through fresh, nutritious food grown by people who love what they do.
Thanks everyone !! I am so excited!! 🙂
Here is the new catalogue for download. Hopefully it goes alright. I will also convert to PDF and post soon. Thanks for your support and we are always available at abunadhseeds at gmail dot com
We are once again going to be at the Seedy Saturday and Sunday events in Alberta!!
Anyone wishing potatoes can preorder from me at either smileyo at xplornet dot ca or abunadhseeds at gmail dot com
We will do our best to bring garlic as well but it was a wet fall and none got planted out in the garden, so we have limited volume that has to go back in by April 1st and none of the beds are prepared! Yikes! So we will have to be conservative on sales so we have some to plant here.
Schedule of events:
Mar 1-3 – Olds – we will have our seeds at the Pomeroy Inn and Suites event for the Alberta Farm Fresh Producers Assoc. conference and trade show
Mar 11 – Stony Plain Alberta at the PERC Building, Multicultural Center 5413 – 51 st. from 10-3 PM
Mar 12 – Sherwood Park Seedy Sunday, at Salisbury Greenhouse from 11 to 4 PM
Mar 18 – Calgary Seedy Saturday – Hillhurst Sunnyside Community Center (on 14 st), 10-3
Mar 19 – Edmonton Seedy Sunday – Central Seniors Rec. Center, North Entrance, 11113 – 113 St. from 11-4 PM Seedy Sunday Edmonton
Mar 24 – Red Deer in Association with their Eco Living Event at the Red Deer College, Cenovus Learning Common, East Trades Wing, 2nd Floor, 10-6 contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Should be lots of fun as usual and we look forward to seeing you all there!!
If any of you are interested in a very affordable food saving workshop check out the one coming up in Sangudo in January. Poster attached.