Luscher Farm


January 2013  



Happy Holidays and welcome to Luscher Farm's Community Garden Newsletter!


Plan to attend one of the required 2013 Orientation Meetings below:


Returning gardeners must attend one of the following meetings at the West End Building, 4101 Kruse Way.

10-11a Sa 2/23

10-11a Sa 3/2

7-8p Th 3/7

7-8p Th 3/14

New gardeners meetings will be held at Luscher Farm, at 125 Rosemont Road.

1:30-3:30p Sa 2/23

1:30-3:30p Sa 3/2


Karen Davis

Luscher Farm Coordinator


Things To Do This Month

  • Consider looking for ideas for a simple cloch so you can start your spring vegetable early this year.
  • Locate seed companies that might carry unusual seeds that you have wanted to try growing. Do some research, then order early.
  • Watch for a big surprise that will be coming to the garden soon!
  • If you haven't yet, put some lime on your garden soil.
  • Bring in some branches of forsythia and flowering quince indoors for early bloom color.
  • Reapply mulch that may have blown away.



Good News-- Garden Help Is Available For Hire!!

If you need work done in your plot this year you might consider hiring Luscher's Caretaker, Brice Anderson. Brice will be available to do projects you don't want to or aren't able to do yourself.  You may contact him directly at 503-313-5478 to discuss details.   






Story of Luscher Farm 

Learn about the early history of Luscher Farm covering from early settlement days to the present. Information includes the day-to-day life of long ago, discovery of nearby Willamette Meteorite, stage couch mail service, old timers' stories as well as the development of the City's current showplace.

Thursday January 24      7-8:30p 

To register, click here


Knitting for Beginners
Learn all the skills required to complete a basic scarf project to keep you warm and cozy. Topics covered include casting off, the knit stitch, the purl stitch, various stitch patterns, and binding off.
Sundays January 13- February 10    1-3p
To register, click here 
Exploring Culinary Arts and Crafts
Discover the methods used to transform ingredients into delicious dishes.  Savory, sweet,sour, spicy and and bitter- how to use what tastes to compliment or redefine cooking creations. Learn about food layering and pick up new twists in this workshop.
Saturday, January 26    2-5p
To register, click here
To register for other classes, click here.


Ever Heard of Popping Beans?

Like most present day Latin Americans, the Incas and their ancestors depended on beans for much of their nourishment. The problem was that for people living high in the mountains cooking beans was a problem.  Two factors combine to create this problem. Often there is little wood available for fires and, water boils at that such a low temperature in higher altitudes that they couldn't cook most beans.  To circumvent that, the Incas used a remarkable bean know as the Nuna (pronounced noon-ya). They are surprisingly unknown outside the Andes.


Nunas are a type of bean you might think of as a counter part of popcorn.  Heated with a little oil, numas burst out of their seed coats. The effect is less dramatic than popcorn- nunas don't fly up in the air- they open like butterflies spreading their wings.  The result is a soft bean that tastes somewhat like roasted peanuts. Nunas come in many colors and patterns like white, red, and black spotted. During cooking, the heat and moisture inside the bean build up steam which escapes by bursting out.


These beans are grown in higher altitudes from Ecuador to southern Peru, usually for home consumption. Researchers such as Professor Jim Myers who helped develop the black tomato, Indigo Rose recently at Oregon State's Research Farm in Corvallis, has been growing and improving this bean for years. The researchers feel this new variety of bean could be an very important source of high protein for developing countries not just in high altitudes, a tasty snack for industrialized nations, and a wonderful way for regions to improve their soil with this nitrogen-fixing plant. Unfortunately a large corporation purchased the patent on these beans and progress on this dream was put on hold for many years. Nunas are closely related to the cancha bean or "CornNuts". 

Community Garden 

What is a Community Garden?

  • It is a place that connects people to the earth and promotes sustainability
  • It provides a place where people of all ages grow new friends and nutritional food
  • It is a melting pot for different plants from different cultures
  • It is a place of therapy and rejuvenation
  • It provides healthy activities and exercise in a natural setting
  • It develops confidence and provides a great deal of satisfaction knowing how to plant a seed and have it provide food for the family table
  • It is a way to save on the food bill
  • It develops a pride and a feeling of contributing to making the community a better place


More on this subject next month.

 I hope you find these monthly newsletters interesting and informational. They are sent out the fourth Thursday of each month. Please tell me if there are topics you would like me to include in future
If you have any comments  or questions you may reach me at or 503-638-0376.  

See you in the garden,
In This Issue
Things To Do This Month
January Activities
Ever Heard of Popping Beans?
What is a Cummunity Garden?
Discover Active Living!

To view the Winter/Spring 2013 Catalog, click here. To register for Parks & Recreation programs, please call the registrar 503-675-2549 or visit
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