Tag Archives: land management

Event: Spring Foraging Campout 2019

 

This Spring, March 16th – 17th, Green Valley Gardens is holding a 2-day Wild Foods weekend on their organic, permacultural farm in North Texas.

Comprising over 100-acres, this family farm showcases a variety of sustainable land management practices and a diversity of natural resources. Come enjoy the weekend with us as we celebrate the return of Spring and explore all the amazing foods growing in this beautiful landscape!

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Green Valley Gardens was created as a start-up market garden, just North of Denton, Texas. They are active promoters of local farmers markets, and regularly work with other local growers to bring environmentally-conscious, quality food to North Texas. They also work hard educating and sharing their practices with others.

We’ll get to spend an entire day discussing (and harvesting!) edible species of native and wild plants, their implications for food security and sustainability, and how we can work with these resources to grow a healthier relationship with our Land.

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Day 2 we’ll turn to the culinary arts and explore all the amazing ways you can turn these Mange Sauvage into High Table fare! Spring is a beautiful time of year in the woods;  flowers are blooming, onions are budding and a smorgasbord of other wild foods are on offer. From learning to prepare soup and salad starters to delicious hors d’ouvres and wild entrees, we’ll share our secrets to celebrating and enjoying all the amazing flavors and foods here around us.

Come camp out with us, enjoy some excellent foods around the fire, and experience great fellowship while learning more about how we can work to craft a better way of living, together.

Tickets are $25 for adults, $10 for kids 10 years and younger (kiddos 3 and under free!), includes entire 2-day event with meals, workshops and camp sites. Tickets are available through Paypal. PLEASE RSVP with the ages and numbere of people in your party. Space is limited, so reserve your spot soon.

Note: This event is the last weekend of Spring Break 2019, so bring the kids for a last burst of fun (with a little learning snuck in) before they have to head back to school!

Hope to see you this Spring, and Happy Harvesting!

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Gardens – New Home, New Gardens

Our new home has brought us a new opportunity to grow some new wild gardens, and we are going to try and take them in a little bit of a different direction this time around.

We’ll still be wildcrafting some of our favorite wild and native species from our surrounding area to fill our beds, but we are also going to be working with local businesses and entrepreneurs to determine the market potential for the different species we grow as well!

Since moving to the Texas hill country this past Summer, I have been fortunate to meet and work with several other individuals dedicated to sharing and educating others about these wonderful, wild resources. From reknown restaurants to urban farms and markets, there is growing interest in these products as healthy, holistic and delicious cuisine. In working with landowners and small farmers, it’s also important to be able to share as much data on the potential of these resources as possible. That includes productivity, economy, but also market value.

Throughout this next yearly cycle of foraging then, we’ll be actively marketing the products of our wild gardens to local restaurants and businesses that are interested in showcasing local and willd fare, to determine which species are the most profitable, what is the value of all other species grown as well, in addition to the usual data we collect on productivity and environmental impact (i.e: wildlife).

We’re also stepping up our overall construction in terms of design and bed size this year. The Texas hill country is *blessed* with an abundance of beautiful limestone, and we’ve been able to re-purpose several hundred pounds of flagstone and loose fill. The number of species we are growing has also increased. We are adding several aquatic species, so we’ll also be building tanks to house them, along with a few native fish species to act as mosquito control-cum-aquacultures. That will be especially exciting!

New Garden Layout

In all we’ll be propagating between 15 and 20 different wild and native species of edible plants. Including: Turk’s cap mallow (Malvaviscus arboreus), American beautyberry (Callicarpa americana), prickly pear cactus (Opuntia spp.), canna lily (Canna spp.), winecup (Callirhoe involucrata), passionfruit (Passiflora incarnata), wild onion (Allium spp.), cattail (Typha spp.), American lotus (Nelumbo lutea), wild grapes (Vitis rotundifolia) and an assortment of native herbs and flowers.

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Our hope and purpose for this new project is to set down a blueprint which can be followed or applied to any small to moderate sized property or urban farm and garden. We’ve touted the potential benefits of working with these resources for many years, and have seen success in the past in propagating them both for ourselves and others. But now we are unequivocally stepping forward to create a new potential dynamic in the arena of land and habitat management. Proverbally putting our money exactly where our mouths are.

Within the next two years we will have definitive data on the potential and value of managing landscapes for wild and native edible plants, both in terms of their impact on human standards of living and economy, as well as the positive impacts they can have on urban and rural environments.

We will have the basis for forming  a new pact with our Land; the seeds by which we can reap a greater freedom and securty for all.

 

 

Event: FARFA Conference

 

I will be speaking during the Farm and Ranch Freedom Alliance – Farm and Food Leadership Conference October 14th and 15th , in McKinney, Texas.

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Topics covered at the event will range from food security and public policy, to land management techniques and home gardening. I will be speaking on a panel about diversifying income streams for farmers, along with Megan Neubauer, Brad Stufflebeam and Jennie Herm.

I will also be holding a joint panel with Jesse Griffiths, owner and head chef at Dai Due, in Austin Texas. We will talk about issues dealing with learning about edible native species of plants, as well as wild game. While this talk will be geared towards the average consumer, we will also address how consumers, as well as land owners, can utilize these resources to supplement their income, experiment with native species, benefit their environment and provide a sustainable food source.

Conference tickets are still available, as are tickets to the Farm-to-Table dinner being held the evening of the first day of the Conference. There are also several workshops to be held Sunday, the day before the Conference officially starts, and they will also cover a wide range of both consumer and producer related topics.

More information and registration are available here.