Sunday, May 31, 2009

Plant a Row/Grow a Row

Plant a Row/Grow a Row is a Canada-wide campaign to encourage people to grow a bit of vegetables in their own gardens for their community food banks and soup kitchens.

There are organizations in the Near North Ontario region who have already put a call out for donated food from people's gardens, such as The Gathering Place in North Bay. If you are unsure if your local food bank or soup kitchen would like food, just approach them, and if possible, find out what type of vegetables they can really use.

Many folks are feeling the pinch right now with the economy the way it is, so by simply planting and growing one row of veggies in your garden can really make a difference!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Seed Preview!

A little preview of some of our seeds!

So the seeds have been gathered, as well as some plants. This is the list of what we will be growing in the Locavore Garden (food being donated to Amelia Rising):


Laxton's Progress Peas
Norli Peas
Uchiki Kuri Squash
Buttercup Squash
Scarlet Runner Pole Beans
Tender Green Pole Beans
Kentucky Wonder Pole Beans
Contender Bush Beans
Provider Bush Beans
Coreless Nantes Carrots
Denvers Half-Long Carrots
Early Wonder Beets
French Breakfast Radishes
Cherry Belle Radishes
German Giant Radishes
Bright Lights (Rainbow) Swiss Chard
Bloomsdale Long-standing Spinach
Black Seeded Simpson Lettuce
Red Oak Leaf Lettuce
Bunching Evergreen Onions


Sweet Woodruff
Tall Climbing Nasturtiums
Dwarf Jewel Nasturtiums
Garden Sage
Lemon Balm
Thanks to all who have either made donations of items and/or your time so far!

Recommended Reading

These are free online texts. If you know have any of your own recommendations, let us know and we will add them to our list!

Community Gardening 101 from FoodShare

Day Range Poultry by Andrew W. Lee, Patricia Foreman & Gene Logsdon
Domestic Animals by Richard Lamb Allen

First Lessons in Beekeeping

Five Acres and Independence A Handbook for Small Farm Management by Maurice Grenville Kains

Food From the Wild by Ian Burrows

Growing and Using Herbs and Spices by Milo Miloradovich

Growing Gourmet and Medicinal Mushrooms by Paul Stamets

How to Grow More Vegetables, Fruits, Nuts, Berries, Grains and Other Crops by John Jeavons

Organic Gardener's Composting by Steve Solomon

Permaculture in a Nutshell by Patrick Whitefield

Pioneer Days in the Township of Nipissing

Plants and Beekeeping by F. N. Howes

Rare Breeds {Livestock} by Lawrence Alderson

Reap Without Sowing: Wild Food from Nature's Cornucopia by Erika E. Gaertner

Reflections of Restoule by June Hample

Small Farm Handbook by Shirley Humphrey & Eric Mussen

Starting a Community Garden

Starting From Seed by Karan Davis Butler

The Apple Grower: A Guide for the Organic Orchardist by Michael Phillips

The Backyard Beekeeper by Kim Flottum & Weeks Ringle

The Basics of Permaculture Design by Ross Mars

The Book of Draft Horses by Donna Campbell Smith

The Book of the Farm by Henry Stephens & John S Skinner

The Complete Book of Herbs and Spices by Sarah Garland

The Encyclopedia of Country Living: An Old Fashioned Recipe Book by Carla Emery

The First Book of Farming by Charles L. Goodrich

The Green Pharmacy by James Duke

The Herbalist's Way by Nancy Phillips, Michael Phillips & Rosemary Gladstar

The Household Book of Practical Receipts by George W M Reynolds

The Household Cyclopedia by Thomas Kelly

The Illustrated Horse Management by Edward Mayhew

The Manual of Women

The Permaculture Garden by Graham Bell

The Permaculture Way by Graham Bell

The Ultimate Container Garden by David Joyce

The Wild Vegetarian Cookbook by Steve Brill

The Woodland Way: A Permaculture Approach to Sustainable Woodland Management by Ben Law

The Young Farmer, Some Things He Should Know by Thomas Forsyth Hunt

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Online Resources

Find a Farmer's Market in Ontario

Foodland Ontario Availability Guide

Guerrilla Gardening

Hobby Farms

Mother Earth News

Northern Ontario Plant Database

Northern Ontario Wildflowers

Old Farmer's Almanac

Organic Gardening

Peak Moment

Permaculture Activist

Permaculture Canada

Prepared Society Forum

Small Farm, Permaculture & Sustainable Living

Susun Weed Wisewoman Forum

The Progressive Farmer

The Ram's Horn

Trails North

Urban Agriculture Magazine


Beyond Factory Farming Coalition

Canadian Biotechnology Awareness Network

Canadian Organic Growers

Canadian Registered and Rare Breed Farm Directory

C.R.A.F.T Ontario

Eat Local Sudbury

Ecological Farmer's Association of Ontario



Greening Nipissing

Lake Nipissing Stewardship Council

Nipissing Environmental Watch

Northern Lights Regional Foods

North Bay Heritage Gardeners

Northern Ontario Agri-Food Education & Marketing

Organic Agriculture Centre of Canada

Rare Breeds Canada

Seeds of Diversity

Sweetman's Garden

The Foodshed Project


Blogs of interest...

Chapman's Landing Blog

City Farmer

Cold Climate Gardening

Garden Rant

Local Eating

Seasonal Ontario Food

The Ethicurean

The Urban Garden Project

You Grow Girl

Near North Ontario Businesses that Support Local

Do you know of a Near North Ontario business that supports local? Let us know about it and we will add them to the list!

Chapman's Landing Cooking Studio

Heal Thy Health

Hibou Boutique

Natural Goddess

Nature's Harmony

Northern Edge

Piebird B & B

Soul Sister Creations

Near North Ontario Farmers' Markets

Argyle Farmers' Market (Port Loring)

North Bay Downtown Farmers' Market

Powassan Farmers' Market

Riverside Farmers' Market (New Liskeard)

West Nipissing Farmers' Market (Sturgeon Falls)

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Farmers Market Season Starts!

This is a photo of our booth last year at the North Bay Downtown Farmers' Market. We will be there again this year!

Here is an
article from the North Bay Nugget giving details about various farmers' markets in the Near North region. Many open this Victoria Day weekend, including the North Bay Downtown Farmers' Market on Saturday and we will be there!

Farmers' market outgrows its home
Source found here.

The buzz around buying local is taking the sting out of trying to find a place for producers to market their goods.

Board’s Honey Farm has been selling its golden nectar at the North Bay Downtown Farmers’ Market since the venue opened eight years ago when there was less noise about leaving a carbon footprint.

“It’s about food value, quality and taste,” says Ann Board after tapping some honey at the farm nestled in Restoule, about 65 kilometres southwest of North Bay.

The market gives the public a chance to buy direct from the producers and build a trust that the food is safe, Board says.
“It’s bringing the country into the city.”

The busy beekeepers have a dozen hive locations and a menu of honey flavours depending on what flowers are in bloom, like wildflowers, meadow blend, basswood and buckwheat.

There’s scores of value-added goods like skin products, candles, creamed honey, and there’s relish and salsa made with their sweet yield instead of sugar.

The North Bay Downtown Farmers’ Market opens for the season Saturday with small business owners, crafters, artists and producers selling locally grown and handmade products.

While market manager Ron Warman is pleased to see the explosion of interest from vendors and buyers, he’s frustrated to cap the number of vendors at 30 and turn away 17 others who are interested in joining this year because there isn’t enough space for them at the current location on McIntyre Street across from city hall.

He won’t bump crafters who have supported the market in its lean years in favour of new producers who want to plant their roots now that homegrown, handmade goods are hot commodities.

“That’s our problem right now is trying to accommodate this new interest,” says Warman, adding seniors and young families prefer that central spot with free parking and within walking distance for downtown residents. “We’re hesitant to move, but we can’t grow in that location.”

Friends of the Waterfront offered an area in front of the Discovery North Bay museum, but it’s too small to fit the growing market, Warman says.

It needs an area that’s at least 30-by-60 metres to accommodate 40 vendor spots — some vendors need more than one spot — with access to electricity, parking and washrooms, although Warman would like to see a bigger space so the market can bloom.

Warman would also like some kind of covering, whether it’s a tent or permanent structure, when the weather isn’t on their side. Exposure to biting wind and blowing sand is the main reason the market abandoned its first haunts on Oak Street.

“I’m not going to move unless it’s a step up,” he says.

The cost and global impact of transporting foreign foods to grocery stores and a push to eat local has even spawned a reality TV show with six families from Mission, B.C., volunteering to only eat food that has been produced within 100 miles, named after the book of the same name.

This year’s farmers’ market will offer a new baker and steady favourites, with maple products, perennials, jewelers, crafters, handmade soaps, woodworking, fresh-grown produce and other goods.

There’s also a booth with hot drinks and a new coffee club to reward repeat customers.

Also new this year is a pancake festival May 30 with syrup provided by vendor Matthews Maple Syrup of Powassan.

The market is open every Saturday rain or shine until the Thanksgiving weekend.

Friday, May 1, 2009

12 Heirloom Veggies for Container Gardens

Whether you are a seasoned 'balcony farmer' or are planning to grow vegetables for the first time, these twelve heirloom varieties are perfect for a container garden.

Note: links are to Urban Harvest out of Toronto , but for the most part you can find these seeds on other websites, and many more locally.

Black Valentine Bush Bean

Northeaster Pole Bean

Scarlet Nantes Carrot

Bull's Blood Beet

Lemon Cucumber

Capocijners Blue Podded Pea

Rainbow Chard

Bloomsdale Longstanding Spinach

French Breakfast Radish

Evergreen Bunching Onion

Delicata Winter Squash

Brandywine Tomato