As the largest native fruit in our region, Pawpaws are favorites in our edible landscaping. They can handle cold Winter temperatures and shady lighting, and they have relatively few pests.Read More
Ramps, or Wild Leeks, are wild edible plants in the allium family. Growing natively in the Appalachian mountains from Canada to North Carolina, ramps only appear for a few weeks before going to seed and disappearing for the Summer. As the first green to appear in early Spring, ramps have historically been celebrated as a sign of Spring and a tonic to the traditional Appalachian meat-heavy Winter diet.Read More
At Edible Eden, we spend a lot of time thinking about the larger impact of our work - we try to always choose the most responsible selection of plants, materials, and garden amendments that we can.
One eco-friendly material we love is rice hull! Rice hulls are the the husks around rice grains that are removed in processing. The hulls are then par-boiled to sterilize any rice grains and ensure no diseases are spread. We often use rice hulls to aerate, improve drainage, and retain water in our soils. Unlike the commonly used perlite and vermiculite, rice hulls are renewable resources. They do not have to be mined and no land is disrupted in their production: they would otherwise be considered a waste product! Unlike those other products, rice hulls are also organic material so they break down and add new nutrients to the soil over time. Because of this, you must refresh your beds with new hulls every year.
Rice hulls can also be used as a mulch much like straw or leaves. Use them to retain warmth or moisture in a bed or keep delicate seeds in place; we just topped our freshly planted carrot seeds with rice hulls to keep them from blowing away and provide good germinating conditions without burying them too deep.
Have you tried using rice hulls in your garden? Let us know what you think!
Nothing like a new baby to make a few months disappear. We welcomed Malakai Wolf to the world on August 5 and it has been quite a ride adjusting to being new parents! And suddenly it’s here, the first few days of October, the Jewish holidays, the rain, the chill and the FALL!
Here we are at peak summer and all that early season work should finally be paying off. All those fruiting plants: the tomatoes and cucumbers, zucchinis and eggplants, peppers and summer squash are all ripening on the vines. The onions, garlic, shallots as well as beets have matured and can be used now. The basil and other summer herbs are still going. Now is the time to be creative in the kitchen and, if you can stand the heat, get your Farm To Table cook on.
Unfortunately, this is also the season of fungal diseases, summer pests and extreme heat- so it can be easy to get distracted worrying about your plants survival. Indeed, the game now is to see how long you can keep some of these annual plants alive and yielding before they succumb to their eventual seasonal demise and make way for the rich hearty flavors of fall.
Truth be told, one of the real skills of a grower is getting the timing right. Many of our favorite fall crops must be planted around mid-August if they are to yield before winter conditions arrive, but often those precious summer crops are still occupying garden space long past that window.
What to do? Well, the first thing is make sure to have a garden plan to serve as a roadmap and guide planting decisions over the course of the season. Edible Eden offers garden plans for any size garden that will help maximize your space over the course of the season.
If you don’t have a plan in place; consider interplanting some fall crops in and amongst your yielding plants over the next few weeks so that when they do go down your kales and cabbages will rise to the occasion and fill their space.
Here at 2601 Taney, we are thinking a lot about timing as we continue our extended baby watch. Teri was at 40 weeks a week ago and now we are trying to go about our lives knowing that at any minute labor will begin and we will need to step away from whatever we were doing and head to the hospital.
It’s a good thing we have plenty of beautiful produce to munch while we are waiting!
Stay posted for news of the soon-to-arrive baby Rosenstein and enjoy that summer produce while it’s here.
While Edible Eden was founded to support people in local, seasonal eating and we do get most excited about interesting food plants...we also design and install ecological pollinator gardens using native plants and perennial cutting flowers.Read More
Here at Edible Eden we are always learning about and discovering great edible landscaping plants. At the moment I am mesmerized by common Sage (Salvia Officinalis). I’ve known that Sage was great to cook with and really shines when fried in butter until crispy and crumpled over butternut squash ravioli...Read More
Last week I was so desperate for fresh produce, that in a moment of weakness I went to the grocery store and purchased a bunch of out of season produce shipped from great distance to Baltimore. I bought tomatoes and cucumbers and peppers and made myself a beautiful Israeli salad with feta cheese because I was craving it and I could. And- well- what can I say; good olive oil and decent feta is wasted on a salad that tastes like plastic. There's no way around the fact that out of season tomatoes bred for shelf life, produced in industrial systems and shipped half way across the world have very little in common with tomatoes grown with love and compost, picked from the garden and served up still warm from the sunshine.Read More
Did you know that Edible Eden sources most of our beautiful organic veggie seedlings from one of our best farming mentors Jack Gurley of Calvert's Gift farm? Jack has been making a living growing organic produce for the past 20 years or so and if someone knows the answers to all those endless farming questions...it's him. He has also been mentoring young farmers through Chesapeake Alliance for Sustainable Agriculture for the past several years and Edible Eden founder Josh Rosenstein had the amazing opportunity to participate in that program back in 2012. Jack has been watching the weather and the paying attention to the nuances of the seasons in this area for many years so- when he says this season is starting early...we believe him.
What that means is that while usually we wait until at least May 15th to plant warm season crops outside, this season we can start by May 1st. It also means many of our early season crops should grow faster and get tired sooner so keep your eyes on your lettuces! On the down side, it means we'll most likely have less time to enjoy our tender spring greens before they will need to make way for the warm season crops like tomatoes and cucumbers.
One new thing we are trying out this year is planting spinach seedlings instead of direct seeding. Jack made us trays of densely planted and beautifully germinated spinach seedlings and we have been planting them out all over the place. This allows us to space the little spinach plants more uniformly and get more succulent, healthy spinach leaves from smaller spaces. It also allows us to get a two week jump on the season as the seedlings are already a couple weeks old when we plant them.
Make sure to notice your spinach this year and let's see if this new way of planting does well!
By Farmer Josh
With the snow coming down outside, huddled in front of the heater, you wouldn't think that spring was on its way. But while we are shoveling our sidewalks and staying home from work and school, nature is beginning to take the deep inhale that precedes the exhale of spring madness.
The light is growing. Starting at the winter solstice in December we have been gradually getting just a little bit more sunlight each day, and under the snow, under the frozen ground, the plants can feel it. It's time to tap maple trees because the sap is running. Likewise it's time to begin pruning some types of dormant fruit trees and grape vines in anticipation of their waking up. Vegetable farmers in our area are starting their first seeds beneath lights in basements and living rooms. The alliums: those straight early soldiers are beginning their long trek to April (when they finally get to go outside). For those with high tunnels, the first succession of tomatoes are sending up spunky cotyledons, rearing up their heads to the lights.
Here at Edible Eden we are also feeling the stirrings of the coming season. Josh Russakis joined the team as PR and Marketing strategist and now things that seemed to be forever on the “one day” pile, are actually happening. Check out our new online and social media presence: follow us on Twitter, see some sweet garden and produce shots on Instagram, and check out our blog to find some great farm-to-table recipes, gardening tips and produce porn.
We are also excited to be working with the St Paul Lower school on their school garden program. While the sleet and snow pile up outside we are working to design an amazing educational garden emphasizing experiential education opportunities across a spectrum of subject matters.
In other news we have begun working with Kitchen Table Consultants on our financial plan. KTC is a cool and innovative consultancy that works with small farmers and food entrepreneurs on their financial plans and business models.
Did you know that Edible Eden offers a whole series of wellness programs and workshops from fruit tree care to food preservation? If you'd like to see urban homestead style workshops at your senior center, community center, faith community, or place of work: feel free to put us in touch with your wellness director.
We'll also be offering some workshops around town this spring. Catch us on March 13 at Valley View farms for a free session on growing fruit trees and berries and don't miss the Grow Center program on April 9-10 through the Baltimore City Planning Department.
Edible Eden is growing into its mission and purpose, which is to support people in the Baltimore area in eating more sustainably raised, ultra local, healthy, organic, food. We believe that through doing this we can build soil tilth, support biodiversity, and help our customers live healthier, more sustainable, more delicious lives.
If you are ready to get started on your food journey in 2016: drop us a line to set up your initial consultation.