Free Seed Saving Class at Yorba Linda Public Library – 5.14.14

seed saving flyerJoin OurLocaltopia’s Farmer and Biologist Jonathan Duffy Davis, this Wednesday (5.14.14) at 7pm for a class on seed saving! Held at the Yorba Linda Public Library, this free class will give you the tools needed to effectively gather, save, store and share seeds from your backyard garden or farm. Continue reading “Free Seed Saving Class at Yorba Linda Public Library – 5.14.14”

Jonathan Duffy Davis’ Pickled Green Beans: Recipe and Method

Ingredients for pickled green beans

Most vegetables are takers but bean give back. Along with the rest of the legumes beans have formed an amazing symbiosis with nitrogen-fixing bacteria (Rhizobium). These bacteria that call the roots of legumes home are capable of taking the inert nitrogen gas (n2) that constitutes almost 80% of every breath that we take and turning it into a form of nitrogen that plants can use. Nitrogen is the most limiting nutrient to plant growth in the garden. The more nitrogen your soil contains, the better your garden will grow. Thus, beans nourish not only the gardener but the garden as well. Continue reading “Jonathan Duffy Davis’ Pickled Green Beans: Recipe and Method”

A Creepy Cocktail for Halloween: Fresh Beet Gin Fizz

We love beets! Beets taste of the soil in which they were grown and they are our icon, our mascot. Beets were also a major staple in the kitchen when the three of us starting cooking and working together – so we are and always will be fond of beets.

Our writing often focuses on seasonality and this beet-based cocktail is certainly one that will fit the bill for this immediate season – Halloween night.

Continue reading “A Creepy Cocktail for Halloween: Fresh Beet Gin Fizz”

Fall Baking: Savory Stuffed Pumpkin!

This sugar pumpkin is stuffed with everything good and about to be roasted!
This sugar pumpkin is stuffed with everything good and is about to be roasted!

For our second fall baking post, we wanted to share a recipe that has enchanted us to the most infinite degree… a stuffed pumpkin baked with a savory filling that, as recipe name suggests… has truly everything good.  Continue reading “Fall Baking: Savory Stuffed Pumpkin!”

Late Summer Woes in the Kitchen Garden #3: White Powdery Stuff on my Squash / Pumpkin / Melon /Cucumber Leaves

Remember when you planted those zucchini in the late spring? You amended the soil and gently tucked the young-babe-of-a-plant into it’s rich new home. You watered it carefully and cleared the weeds, fretful that it wouldn’t make it. And then it started producing fruit…

Continue reading “Late Summer Woes in the Kitchen Garden #3: White Powdery Stuff on my Squash / Pumpkin / Melon /Cucumber Leaves”

Late Summer Woes in the Kitchen Garden #2: Black Spots on the Bottom of Your Tomatoes and/or Cracked Fruit

A large, leathery black spot that forms on the bottom of tomatoes is a common issue, particularly among heirloom varieties. It’s called blossom end rot and you’ll certainly know it when you see it. Blossom end rot results when a plant that is deficient in calcium. The plant obtains its calcium from the soil but the nutrient level in the soil is almost never to blame. Uneven watering is usually the issue in the home garden – the soil is allowed to become too dry before more water is applied… Continue reading “Late Summer Woes in the Kitchen Garden #2: Black Spots on the Bottom of Your Tomatoes and/or Cracked Fruit”

Late Summer Woes in The Kitchen Garden #1: Great Tomato Plants but No Tomato Fruit

The youthful blush of summer garden plants disappeared long ago. Tomatoes now look ragged, the basil won’t stop producing flowers, and some white, powdery stuff keeps ending up on your squash leaves. Fret not, some of these problems are easy to handle. The others will educate you in the art of acceptance (or toxic systemic pesticide use; your choice: zen or poison). You have gigantic plants that aren’t producing fruit – this has to be the most frustrating of summer garden issues. The big, beautiful plants attest to your garden mojo but the lack of fruit suggests otherwise… Continue reading “Late Summer Woes in The Kitchen Garden #1: Great Tomato Plants but No Tomato Fruit”