Farm Blog

Thank you again for braving the blizzard to celebrate, connect with great food, and 'planting an orchard'! Just imagine all those future cherry trees (don't forget to squat:-).
I am so uplifted from all the good vibes, intentions, laughter and seeds shared and planted.

We were able to raise $850.00 in funds! This will go a long way, thank you! Additionally, with all the seeds donated today and from what I've gleaned from others, The women growers in the Sine-Saloum region will be able to plant out a couple hundred row feet/farm. In the past we've planted shared 'demonstration beds' ie since many of the farmers share space/land to grow on we've constructed seeds beds to trial different varieties, plant insectory herbs and flowers and share techniques. From there seeds are harvested and shared forward amongst the individual farmers. So in essence your generosity helped plant teaching/learning/eating/

sharing beds of veggie, herb, and flower goodness!

I will honor my commitment and extend the immense gratitude, generosity that was shared during the workshop with the women farmers in the following ways:

Work with NCBA CLUSA Farmer to Farmer Program to transfer funds and mail seeds.
I'll also email and share highlights, photos forward later this week in celebration of our workshop success.

I am tentatively set to travel there Nov/Dec. or January in 2016.

I also finally remembered the name of third grower group, JUBO (means widespread). If you're interested in learning more about how they got started, here's a link to an interview I did as part of my last Farmer to Farmer adventure in Senegal.

I Will keep you in the loop as the project evolves and thanks again for sharing your generous spirit!

For the chocolate lovers:
Becky Otte, who made the amazing truffles, has more of her chocolate goodness to share and is selling some of her creations just in time for Valentines. if you're interested send her an email:

Also Here is a link to Roots Chocolate website.

For the Fruit Lovers:

I've enclosed a handout of some of the different fruits we grow at our farm as well as a flyer highlighting this season's events at the farm! We'd love to have you venture out and tour the orchard, come visit us (though not nearly as cool as the orchard poses we did during the workshop).

Thank you again for helping me transition from being a butterfly weed seed (ie wind pollinated, not knowing where or how my intentions, projects might stick) to more of an oak or cashew seeds - wherein I can deepen my awareness, provide support in the same place(s) in Senegal for the growers and in my backyard in Wisconsin:-). Here's to planting the seeds of the as yet to be imagined on and off the yoga mat! Wishing you all much abundance.

Happy Mid-winter!

Yours in hardy kiwi,

PS If you are into exploring the planting side as well as enjoying more local fruit creations, we'll be hosting a Local Fruit Tasting May 16, details on our website.


A brief journey to the center of the Earth and the Universe - Larkspur's spurious season at the farm

Admittedly, I'm still working on finding the sweet spot on our farm where larkspurs thrive and are fully supported. They're a bit fickle from seed to bloom. Larkspurs and delphiniums benefit from a cold period before seeding. This year, I had mixed results with germination, and the flowers that remained are gracing the fields. There's a balance in supporting these flowers post transplant. The spikey blooms, carried loosely in it's racemes, tend to want to flop and surrender into the atmosphere, perhaps in sync with its star-like shape. The flowers are worth the struggle in growing them in the fields. Their purple flowers attract butterflies and bumblebees, who hover over the blooms laden with pollen cargo. It's beauty in a bouquet packs an equal load of celestial wonder and marks the turning point from spring to summer in our flower gardens.

Larkspur blossoms opening along the flower field edges. Photo by Rob McClure

Larkspur blossoms opening along the flower field edges. Photo by Rob McClure

Lightness, Levity. Heavenly, Oceanic, Playful – are words that emerge while I am out combing the garden edges for the purple blue spikes of larkspur featured in this week's bouquet. The theme is blue-green, watery, a celebration of and nostalgia for those summer memories spent swimming in lakes and wondering at the stars while roasting marshmallows and hot dogs over a campfire.

Delve a little deeper into larkspur's spurious history, and you'll discover references to the spaciousness of the cosmos that gives equal weight to reflecting on both our inner and outer universe. In Bach's flower essence reference, larkspur encourages vitality that comes from living from our hearts. Larkspurs are closely related and entwined with Delphiniums. The former, tend to withstand a Wisconsin winter and perennialize the landscape. The latter's name is derived from the Greek God Delphi, represented by the oracle of Delphi, considered the center of the Earth according to Zeus. The shape of the flower's nectary is said to represent the dolphin, with its playful qualities and astute intelligence that guides and glides alongside the ocean's surface waters. When I read into the history and language of larkspur I am inspired by the exploration of our inner and outer worlds and the connections to the water, the play of dolphins, and the reminder of how much we eat and enjoy in life comes from the peak expression of flowers.

There's a dreamlike softness here when you gaze into your bouquet, both in memory and in flower bud, that only the greens and blues that the blossoms of late June in the garden can bring. I hope you, too enjoy dreaming and stargazing amidst the backdrop of larkspur in this week's bouquets. - ES