Community Farm II

In early June 2019, the second Los Altos Hills Community Farm was installed on a busy corner!  A large neighborhood gathering helped to celebrate the opening of the stand!

Fresh Herbs at Community Farm Stand!

The community farm stand has become a popular community sharing point thanks to the community gathering site of Nextdoor.com.

Today a neighbor Mellisa has left several vases of fresh herbs to share and posted pictures of the herbs on the electronic nextdoor.com community bulletin board:

 

I just put lots of fresh herbs from our herb garden at the community farmstand (at Fremont Ave and Manuella Rd).

– Mint
– Thai Basil
– Italian Basil
– Greek Oregano
– Rosemary
– Thyme

Help yourself – they are free! (But please don’t take the vases).

We are making this chicken for dinner tonight – it is our absolute favorite and a go-to in our house. It uses Thyme and Rosemary. (http://www.thecomfortofcooking.com/2013/…)

And if you need some inspiration for dinner or treats to make with these, here are some of my other favorite things to make:
– Herbed butter
– Mojitos
– Mint Lamb
– Grilled Rosemary Chicken
– Rosemary and thyme roasted potatoes
– Grilled salmon with thyme, olive oil and salt/pepper
– Thai curry with basil
– tomatoes with basil and mozzarella
– water infused with rosemary, mint, lime and strawberriesfarmstandherbs

Bees have arrived!

Today I installed 4 bee nucs (small hives)  today from a bee keep down near San Luis Obispo.  I transported this hives in the back of my car for 4 hours.. luckily not too many escape from the cardboard boxes and flying around the inside of the car!

 

 

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I’ve moved the frames from the boxes into the full wooden hives.

I’m hoping for a better bee experience this year as last year all of my hives died by mid November.  Bee keeping is not as easy as one might expect!

Seed Library Added to Los Altos Hills Farm

At a recent Slow Food South Bay annual event, I learned about the seed libraries now available at many real public libraries locally where you can “check out” seeds in the hope that you will bring back some other ones to share.

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So I built a small seed library box where you can check out seeds or share seeds you longer need or wish to plant or seeds you have harvested it yourself.

On the top of the box, we have provided this set of instructions to help with the seed library loaning and sharing:


Los Altos Hills Community Farm Stand

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SEED LIBRARY INSTRUCTIONS

  • All seeds are free but only take what you will use
  • Please contribute back to the seed library with your own seeds

Feel free to donate seed packages that you have purchased but not used

Collect your own seeds from your own yards and harvests and put them into individual envelopes or containers and users can use the envelopes in the drawers below.   Feel free to include any specific instructions with your seed packets envelopes on proper growing techniques

Seeds are arranged into the following areas:

Organic / Heirloom – This is important if people want to harvest seeds to put back at the farm stand. Many commercial seeds will not sprout successfully

Backyard collected seeds -Your own collected, and successful harvested seeds from your own local LAH and nearby communities gardens – These are the most valuable types of seeds to share since we know they work in our climate and soils.

Non organic seeds or Not sure – Most seed packages will now say if they are open pollinated seeds where the seeds can be harvested successfully from the plant. If unsure, put your seeds in these area

Pencils, envelopes, markers, and seed bags are available in the drawers for your use.   Start sharing and growing with the seed library!


Honey at the Farm Stand

It’s honey time at the farm stand.  I’ve harvested our backyard hives about 2 weeks ago and extracted about 3 1/2 gallons of honey.  It’s incredible thick, darker and much richer in flavors than store bought generic honey.  Contact me directly if you wish to purchase some directly or they are available at the farm stand too.  $10 / 1 Pint raw, local (Los Altos Hills) honey.

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Los Altos Hills Harvest Event

September 25, 2014 –

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About 20 folks, young and old,  came out for the Los Altos Hills backyard and community farm stand harvest at Jill’s house.  We all harvested some for our selves but picked lots of extra bounty of grapes and apples that is now available at the LAH community farm stand at  14101 Manuella Rd, Los Altos Hills, CA 94022.  The farm stand is actually located on Fremont Road since this property is a corner lot and borders Fremont Rd and Manuella Rd.  It can be hard to find in the trees.

So please come out ASAP to get free bags of table grapes in the two coolers and free apples in the boxes.  The grapes will expire fast as they are very ripe and very sweet!

Los Altos Hills – Grape and Apple Farm Stand harvest and share

IMG_1904Come join your LAH neighbors for a community apple and grape harvest and take home some bounty and pick some for others to pick up for free at the farm stand on Fremont Rd.

Date: Thursday 9/25/2014
Time: 4 PM to 5:30 PM

Location : 26530 Westin Drive, Los Altos Hills, CA 94022 (Near Pinewood school on Fremont Rd)

There are plenty of apples and hundreds of pounds of table grapes to let folks take some home while others can be used to pass out at the farm stand for free!

Please bring some strong, re-useable grocery bags to take home some of the bounty. If you have a 8 foot step ladder or a fruit picker pole, bring it as well.

Spread the word!

For information on the farm stand, please check the website at
http://urbanfarmstands.org

The Simple Quiche

The simple backyard quiche

The Simple Quiche

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The simple quiche! Fast, fresh, easy and local!

If you have your own chickens or if you can get some fresh, free range type from your local neighbors,  here is a recipe that is easy, changeable, fast and works every time!  I have made hundreds of these so it’s well tested.  This is a great recipe to use what you have in your garden, especially if you have chickens or access to some local egg sources.

The Simple Quiche Recipe

Ingredients:

4 eggs

1/3 cup milk

1 cup cheese of different types

sprinkle of pepper

1 pie crust (either hand make or purchase frozen and defrost)

Inside:  Almost anything goes, asparagus, zuchuni, spinach,  onions, tomatoes, sausage, different types of cheeses, pepper.

Directions

Preheat oven to 425

In a separate bowl, whip 4 eggs and 1/3 milk.

Using a glass, pie pan (well worth the investment of a few dollars at a grocery store),  either create a crust by hand or defrost a store bought one and place it at the bottom of the pan.  If you don’t have the crust or don’t want the crust, that is fine too.

Place quiche fillings in crust.  My favorite is asparagus, but whatever is in season, and add some shredded cheese (about 1 cup) to it, the more types of cheeses the better.  No need to precook anything.

Throw in some tomatoes, small bits of onion or other spices.

Blend egg/milk mixture right before putting it into the pan and then add to pan with quiche filler in case the eggs and milk have separated a bit.

Place in the oven for only 45 minutes.. check it after 40 minutes.  It will cook a bit upon coming out of the oven.  Crust and top should be golden brown.

Cool for about 5 minutes.  Cut and serve.  Serves about 4-6.

Tips:

Avoid using crusts in aluminum pie tins.. glass pie pans works better and no waste and very affordable.

You can taste the difference between local eggs and store production eggs in color and flavor.

Experiment with adding your favorite filling (meat, veggies, spices, cheeses, etc)

 

Arugula Arrives

It’s time for Arugula!

It’s later February at the LAH farm stand and a new farm stand contributor has brought freshly picked organic arugula for the neighborhood to enjoy.  Specially bundled bunches of arugula are in the cooler for $1.00.  Stop by and pick up some for your next salad.  A nice complement to fresh garden salad!

IMG_2176A continual refreshing of books appears to be happening on the free lending library and a few boxes of oranges and tangerines  how fill the free bins and wire baskets.   Hundreds of dollars of honey have been sold at the stand in the past few months.