Live from the Hedgerow

Embracing the dry June heat of San Joaquin County is a small price to pay when exploring the grounds of Lagier Ranches. This 120-acre family-run farm in Escalon, CA, is rich in trees and small fruits: almond trees, grapes, table grapes, citrus, and cherries. Keep your eyes peeled for their Bronx grapes in some of The FruitGuys’ summer mixes.

From Seed to Need

The FruitGuys Community Fund, a nonprofit fiscally sponsored project of Community Initiatives, will award small American farms and agricultural nonprofits a total of $35,643 in 2015 for sustainability projects intended to have a positive impact on the environment, local food systems, and farm diversity.

The O Word

Growing Organic Industry Forces Farms to Pay to Play

By Charlene Oldham

cherry tree

Organic food has spread from hippie food co-ops in the 1970s to the shelves of Wal-Mart today. National standards for what is “organic” have necessitated a certification process. But organic certification exacts a price—from sometimes hefty fees to annual inspections and arduous recordkeeping—and some organic farmers say they aren’t willing to pay it.

Know Your Farmer

“Organic” Label May Not Tell the Whole Story
By Mary Risley, reprinted with permission from Tante Marie’s Cooking School

Aren’t you getting tired of all the talk about organics? Recently, the media was full of news about a report by Stanford University analyzing 237 studies that said there were not necessarily any more nutrients in organic versus conventionally grown foods.

Reflecting on Summer”¦

By Jeff Main of Good Humus Produce, courtesy of Capay Valley Farm Shop

It seems like a long time since I’ve had a chance to touch bases with all of you, as a matter of fact, it has been a long time.

Jeff and Annie Main of Good Humus Produce

The Lessons of Nature

When we look for lessons in life, it’s not often that we can say:   “Hey, check with the slime mold.”   However last week in  The New York Times science section, there was a story about how researchers in Japan conducted an experiment in which a slime mold developed a network that mirrored the Tokyo rail system (which took humans many years to develop) in just 26 hours.   By placing food sources on a map in the same places as major cities around Tokyo, the slime grew tubular connections that nearly matched the rail links among the cities. “The researchers found that the slime mold network was as efficient as the rail network, it tolerated breaks in the connections just as well, and it was created at reasonable cost to the organism,” reported the  Times.