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.
JANUARY GARDEN ACTIVITIES
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.
CLASSES AT LUSCHER FARM
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
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 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".
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.