December 2018 E-Newsletter
How did it get so late so soon?
It's night before it's afternoon.
December is here before it's June.
My goodness how the time has flewn.
How did it get so late so soon?
Featured Instagram Photo of the Month: Ornamentals and Edibles Combine to Make a Stunning Plot
Upcoming Garden Events:
Dec. 1 - Greenhouse Fundraiser - Noon - 1:00 PM
Dec. 8 - Saturday Workday - 9:00 AM - Noon
Dec. 8 - Potluck Lunch – Noon
Dec. 8 - General Meeting - 1:00 PM
Dec. 30 - Sunday Workday - 1:00 PM - 4:00 PM
- Blink and you’ve missed it – another year is almost over. With a warm November drawing to a close, it’s sometimes hard to believe that winter is just a few weeks away. Only the ever-dwindling sunlight and holiday decorations hint at the season to come. If you have bare dirt in your plot, plant it. Even if it is something as quick and easy as tossing out some radish or lettuce seeds. Planted dirt means less weeding and the cooler temperatures and winter rains will mean less trips to keep everything damp for the next few months. If you need help filling your beds, look no further than this Saturday’s greenhouse fundraiser. See below for more information on the goodies that the greenhouse crew with have on sale. Lastly, remember not to dig too much in really wet soil. Digging in wet soil compacts everything and makes it more difficult for transplants’ roots to spread. If you pick something up at the seedling sale and your soil is pretty damp from the rain, it’s okay to hide your seedlings in a shady spot for a few days until the soil becomes workable. Here’s a full list of suggestions for things to do around the garden in December.
- Have any gardening New Year’s Resolutions? Can we help? Here’s your chance to let us know what kind of educational presentations or workshops that you would like to see in 2019. Please take a minute to give us your suggestions.
Greenhouse Fundraiser/ Seedling Sale
This Saturday is the first of the month, which means it’s time for another greenhouse fundraiser seedling sale! The greenhouse is stocked full of winter goodies for your shopping pleasure. Here are a few of the newer plants that the greenhouse crew has for sale this month:
Purple Pointy Cabbage (Kalibos) and Green Pointy Cabbage (Caraflex)
Why grow boring old, round cabbage, when you can grow their elegent pointy cousins? Aside from being pretty to look at, these two cabbages happen to be extra sweet and tasty. They will produce 1-2 pound heads. Shred them together to make some gorgeous coleslaw or stir fry. The purple cabbage is know for storing well while the green has been described as “the sweetest, most tender cabbage we have ever had” by the seed retailer. Extra bonus, the green pointy cabbage is an early producer.
If you’re looking to add some showy color to your plot this winter (and your salad bowl), you might want to pick up a redbor kale plant. These leaves have an unbelievable magenta hue with lovely, crinkly leaves. You can use them for eating (raw or cooked) or as a garnish. The cooked kale will lose some of its magenta color. As if normal, green kale weren’t healthy enough, redbor kale is rich in anthocyanins and other phyto-chemials that are known to fight cancer. Considered a “superfood” by some, Redbor kale contains some of the highest anti-oxidant levels of any other fruit or vegetable.
Click here for a full list of plants for sale and then stop by Saturday, 12/1 between noon- 1pm to pick up something new!
This is the Last Month Get Your Community Service Hours Completed!
If you need hours, the workday, potluck and general meeting on 12/8 is a must attend. Remember that attending a general meeting counts as an hour of service.
What to Do with Wood
We’ll take your wood no matter what shape it’s in. Old wood can be added to the pile near the shredder shed to be turned into mulch (please remove all nails or other metal first). Wood that is still in good condition can be placed under the lumber shed.
Having Fun with Salad Dressing
Gardener Cheryl Hargraves shares her favorite tips for making salad dressing. If you’d like to share a recipe or write an article for the monthly e-newsletter, please contact us. Articles count for 3 hours of community service credit. Next month we will be sharing a cauliflower recipe by gardener Anthony Lai.
All around the garden, there are plenty who are growing luscious, leafy greens. Everything from various colors of lettuce to kale, arugula, collard greens, mustard greens, and chard.
To vary the taste of our greens, there are many options for what to put over them.
The standard vinaigrette dressing usually begins with a ratio of one part vinegar to three parts oil. Or, for those who prefer more of an acidic dressing, one part vinegar to two parts oil. To get the oil and vinegar to stay emulsified (bound together), there are many options. Mayonnaise, mustard (Dijon or wholegrain), egg yolk, honey, and avocado are emulsifiers, to name a few. For flavorings, some ideas are garlic (raw, roasted or dried), dried herbs, spices, berries (chopped fresh or pureed), or cheeses like feta and blue. To counter a bit of the vinegar tartness, options begin with maple syrup, agave, honey or applesauce (sweetened or unsweetened).
The oil in salad dressing can be eliminated altogether, if you choose to, by using avocado, tahini, nut butter, silken tofu, hummus, mustard, or a watered down condiment (mustard, ketchup, bbq sauce, teriyaki sauce) or even a watered down yogurt.
While some love the bite of a great balsamic or red wine vinegar, mellower options can be found by using white wine, apple cider, malt, champagne, sherry or rice vinegars (or mixing some balsamic/red wine with one of the mellow vinegars).
Here is a basic vinaigrette recipe: Mix 1 cup olive oil with 1/3 cup vinegar (can whisk in a bowl, use a blender or shake in a mason jar). To this you can simply add 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper to taste.
To make it a bit more complex, you can add 1-2 minced garlic cloves, 1-2 teaspoons mustard of your choice, 1 teaspoon dried herbs (or 1 tablespoon chopped fresh), and, if you prefer your dressing a bit sweeter, add a tablespoon of maple syrup or honey.
For five non-oil salad dressing recipes, you can get them here.
For ten other recipes, that make just enough to fill a half-pint mason jar (3/4 to 1 cup), you can get them free here. Making dressings in this small quantity is convenient for having a variety of dressings on hand - to mix things up!
That’s all for now. Happy gardening!