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.


Food and Farming Eco-tones: Turning Tensions into Opportunities

After the last quince was harvested and potato dug at my farm in La Valle this autumn, I hopped across the pond, to discover the places and spaces where food, farming and public health meet—supporting work with NCBA-CLUSA (National Cooperative Business Association) Farmer to Farmer Program in Senegal and in Ethiopia with Just Coffee Cooperative and a UW –Ethiopia Twinning Partnership program. This was my fifth trip to Africa and third adventure in Senegal with the Farmer to Farmer Program, though my first time in Ethiopia. With each experience new life is danced and breathed into me.

Trading Valton silt loam for mangrove mud, calm for chaos, I always forget that Africa seems to require a certain initiation period even amongst the most seasoned travelers. Ethiopia demanded self-direction and motivation, in part because my project partners left me on my own once, I arrived. This stood in stark contrast to the comprehensive logistical support from NCBA-CLUSA and the Farmer to Farmer program. What I also love about the farmer to farmer program is its ground-up, peer to peer approach. Your work is based on the needs, skills, and interests of the farmers—and not surprisingly, these needs, skills, and interests are characteristic of those in Wisconsin and the U.S.

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