Spring is here and it’s time to start gardening! I’ve been very motivated the past few weeks to plant herbs, make terrariums, and I finally have my own vegetable garden! I was volunteering with Enrich LA a couple months ago and one of the volunteers offered the use of their backyard. On Saturday, I pulled weeds and planted: 2 varieties of kale, butter lettuce, romaine lettuce. spring lettuce mix, carrots, scallions, and spinach. The area is shady, and gets at least 4-5 hours of full sun a day.
I knew a little bit of about gardening growing up, but I’ve really learned a lot from volunteering with Enrich LA. My mom is a gardener and she grew up on a farm. I was never interested in gardening growing up, because it always felt like a chore. As an adult, I’m trying to learn more about gardening and see how it goes. I hope all goes well, and I will definitely share the progress of my garden. I’m very excited to grow my own food!
EnrichLA Second Saturdays Dinner Series: Second Saturdays is a dinner series that came out of a 1) need to raise funds for our school gardens and 2) desire to enjoy the company of other like-minded school garden lovers! Our very first “Second Saturdays” dinner was held on February 11th, 2012. It was truly a wonderful experience to enjoy a delicious meal with great company! Second Saturdays fundraiser dinners are held every Second Saturday of the month at locations to be announced via email, website and social media outlets.
When I get home from the farmers market, I clean some of my veggies right away and store them. When I buy lettuce it can be warm and limp. I soak lettuce in ice cold water with a little bit of lemon for 20 minutes. Then, I put it in the salad spinner. I see how much dirt or bugs come out of the salad spinner, then soak and spin again. This will make the lettuce crisp and clean. Then, I place a small dish towel in the bottom of a glass storage container and keep it in the fridge. It will last for a week or so.
For more tips on storing produce, check out this great post from from Washingtons Green Grocer:
How to Store Vegetables & Fruit Without Plastic
I was looking for some gardening gloves and came across these multi-purpose 100% biodegradable bamboo gloves by MCR Safety Consumer Products. Here are the gloves specifications:
• Superior Comfort and Unrivaled Softness – Bamboo fabric is lighter and softer than cotton
• Breathable and cool – Bamboo fabric is 2-3 degrees cooler than cotton or polyester, and is more breathable than cotton or any other synthetic fabric
• Increased moisture absorption and ventilation – Bamboo fabric is up to 4times more absorbent than cotton. Tiny micro-gaps and micro-holes helps to promote better moisture absorption and ventilation. This structure allows the fabric to wick moisture away, keeping you cooler and drier.
• Naturally antibacterial – “Bamboo kun”, a unique antibacterial agent found in bamboo fiber helps to reduce bacteria that thrive on clothing and cause unpleasant odors, even after multiple washings.
• Anti-Fungal – Unlike cotton, bamboo fiber products will not hold odor or grow fungus, even if left in moist conditions.
• 100% Biodegradable shell and dip
These gloves fit snug and work rather well to help protect my hands. They are great quality and biodegradable. If you’re looking for some multi-purpose gloves, then I recommend you check these out.
I did a post about what Seedbombs were back in May. I planted mine back then, and still I haven’t seen any flowers. Should it really take more than 4 months to see blossoms? I don’t have a lot of experience with flowers. Has anyone planted these before? Here is my progress so far…
Update 11/15/11: I just had 2 tiny blossom after 6 months. (Pictured below)
Show your support for my friends at Enrich LA!
On Monday, September 26th there will be a fundraiser at Canele Restaurant to benefit EnrichLA and to help us build even MORE gardens!
Canele Restaurant hosts Closed on Mondays, something they created in order to benefit local food initiatives. Canele opens its doors to non-profits like EnrichLA on a day when they would otherwise be closed to the public. For $35 you get a 3 course prix fixe meal, with choices that include greek salad, salt-roasted branzino with dill rice and tzatziki, or roasted half chicken over french fries with vinegar and greek oregano. ALL profits from food sales on this night go directly toward EnrichLA! Vegetarian options also available!
The Atwater Village Farmers’ Market is donating produce, and Fox Gives has generously agreed to MATCH whatever is raised from this fundraiser! This thereby doubles EVERY DOLLAR that is earned through the fundraiser.
Below is a sample menu for the dinner at Canele. We would love it if you joined us for good food and a good cause!
Canele Restaurant is located in Atwater Village at:
3219 Glendale Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90039
Friday, September 16, 2011, is the 5th annual celebration of Park[ing] Day LA and park-ticipants throughout the city will step up to the curb, put a quarter in the meter, and proceed to transform metered curbside parking into urban parks, just for the day.
|Parking meter in front of LOCAL in Silverlake||Parking meter in front of LOCAL in Silverlake|
|Parking meter in front of LOCAL in Silverlake||Parking meter in front of old Circuit City in Los Feliz|
About this project:
On October 8th, 2011 we are building an on-campus edible garden for the students at John Adams Middle School in South Central Los Angeles! This garden will turn what was formerly an asphalt slab into a beautiful outdoor classroom, where students will learn nutrition, environmental awareness and science. They will be able to learn about composting, water reclamation, life cycles, and the origin of the foods they eat, encouraging environmental stewardship and healthy, thoughtful eating habits. In addition to the educational benefits of these gardens, they also enrich the aesthetic of the campus for children who are otherwise surrounded by concrete. The garden experience provides a safe social setting for students to thrive; with gardens, the classroom is given local focus, tangible results, and involvement in inquiry-based education that can take place at each child’s own speed.
EnrichLA is a different kind of organization. We are all volunteer, we have zero overhead and we get things done. These funds will go directly toward building the new on campus edible garden at John Adams Middle School. We coordinate soil tests, asphalt removal, and purchase a 50/50 soil and compost mixture. We design the on campus garden to suit the needs of staff and students, and purchase fruit, vegetable and native plants for harvesting. We build raised beds for these plants and install fencing if needed. On the garden build day, our volunteers come together to put all these pieces together so that by lunch time we have a beautiful and fertile environment prepared for these students to enjoy.
Garden projects bring science, math, and environmental concepts to life so children can see and understand what it is they are supposed to be learning. Many children would have very little contact with the natural world without school garden and habitat exposure. This makes school garden projects even more important, and your help even more crucial!
Toxic chemicals found in our homes can be harmful to us and our pets. However, plants thrive on toxins and improve our air quality. Below are plants that will improve the air quality in your home and are safe for you and your pets. These house plants can be fairly easy to maintain, even for those without a green thumb.
|Gerbera Daisies||Areca Palm||Boston fern||Lady palm|
August 20, 2011 is National Honey Bee Day, which is a day for honey bees and a program for the entire year. If you haven’t seen Vanishing of the Bees, then I highly recommend it. It is extremely educational and a must see!
The National Honey Bee Day program is held one day each year, but that does not mean the public can not help the bees the rest of the year. Awareness of the environment around you is a yearlong effort. Just as beekeepers reach out to the public beyond the festivities and events associated with National Honey Bee Day, the public can also get involved daily with helping the bees.