Tag Archives: farmers market

The Garden Has Sprung

My daughter recently said, “I’m not a procrastinator, I just like to do things later.” Even at 22, she’s so cute.

I’m not procrastinating, I’ve just been super busy! It’s been two weeks since my last post, a little longer than I had anticipated, but given the time of year { SPRING!!! }, it’s not surprising. I want to thank everyone who has followed along with my blog, shared my newsletters, and shown their support through my online store and the farmers market. March was an explosive month for seed sales; an indication to me of people choosing to take back control of our food. I’m excited about the direction of Moonlight Micro-Farm and how it is evolving to synch with what I feel is my right livelihood. I can’t thank all of you enough. Thank you! Thank you!

Hot Pink Hibiscus

I want to share some of my latest garden ventures and harvests with you. Over the last two months, I’ve started over 150 tomato and pepper seeds, herbs, squash, pumpkins, beans, melons, and a mix of various flowers. I’ve transplanted a gardenia, a couple blackberries, a hibiscus, and a limequat; all long over due to be given a more permanent home. I’m back to growing wheatgrass trays for Raw & Juicy and sprouts for my new sprout tasting bar at the Seaside Farmers Market. I’m also continuing to build beds and putting together containers to further expand my growing area.

Sprout Tasting Bar

Last year was my first year in our new/old house and the primary focus was clearing debris (a 30 yard dumpster full!), observing the site, and getting some infrastructure in place. So, this year is all about better defining zones, getting edible perennials in place, and filling in the details.

Dwarf Blue Scotch Kale

What’s Being Harvested Now

With the fast warming weather, my spring garden – it’s more aptly described as a cool season garden in the South – has exploded and is already in rapid decline. My Dwarf Gray Sugar Peas turned out to be mini giants, reaching almost five feet tall. I’ve also discovered that though they are an old reliable heirloom, they aren’t the tastiest sugar peas to be had. That’s too bad because they are quite prolific. I know better for next year. The great thing about Peas is that they are the first ones up, giving that boost of gardening confidence and an infusion of inspiration. Next year I may try Melting Mammoth or Sugar Ann’s. In the meantime, I continue to harvest the pods young and eat them fresh, right in the garden, or lightly sauteed and added to other dishes.

Little Finger Carrots

Dwarf Gray Sugar Pea

Cylindra Beets

Empress of India Nasturtium

Buttercrunch Bibb Lettuce

{ all photos courtesy of e.m.marcus | photography }

I’m also harvesting Tom Thumb Lettuce; Bibb Buttercrunch Lettuce; Watermelon Radishes; Russian, Lacinato, and Dwarf Blue Scotch Kale; Cylindra Beets; and Little Finger Carrots. All of these varieties have done incredibly well. Kale is hands down, no fail. The Bibb lettuce seems to hold up well with our hot days, though it is starting to bolt now. The small Cylindra beets didn’t split and become woody. The tops are just as tasty as the roots. Same for the Little Finger Carrots, nice smallish size, well developed roots, and good semi-sweet flavor. I bought the Watermelon Radish seeds from Cubits. I was worried that I had planted them too late because they got extremely leafy and no radish. All of a sudden, the root started bulbing and in just a week, I had perfectly shaped radishes, a little bigger than a golf ball. Beautiful and tasty! I would recommend these as a good winter radish for the South. I’ll definitely be carrying those seeds this fall.

What’s Sprouting?

We have our very first ever flowering banana. I was hopeful a few weeks ago that we would be gorging on bananas in a few months, but they seem to be having some sort of development issues. I’m not sure what’s going on, but will continue to hope for the best.

Flowering Banana

Crane Melons, White Scallop Squash, Seminole Pumpkins, and that mess of peppers and tomatoes are all in various stages, from sprouting to ready to be transplanted. The Jubilee Watermelon Seeds that I saved from my late fall surprise watermelon are also sprouting nicely. It remains to be seen if they will produce fruit. I’m offering some of these seeds to anyone who is interested in trying some out and seeing how they do. Shallots are poking up and the blackberries are in full flower. Let’s hope the Mockingbirds save us some berries.

In other news

  • We will be offering another giveaway in connection with an article where we will be featured. It’s a surprise! Details coming soon.
  • We have a few fun gifts planned for Mother’s Day including our Biodegradable Bamboo Pots and Seed Pops.
  • We’re starting a new market!!! We will be joining the brand new Grand Lagoon Waterfront Farmers Market on Sundays from 1:00-6:00 pm. This new farmers market begins on April 15th. We’re super excited because this market will be located right in our neighborhood. If you’re local, please come visit us. It’s a different set of vendors than the Seaside Farmers Market and a whole new crowd. It’s going to be a lot of fun!
  • We’re also making a few changes to our online shop. Not sure of the scope yet, but details to follow.

Chandra picking peas

That wraps up Moonlight Micro-Farm garden news. Yep, that’s me picking peas.

Happy Planting!


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Food Sovereignty in the Industrialized World

Food sovereignty isn’t a term that most people associate with the first world. After all, if we want a cheese doodle or an organic apple, one only need to travel to their closest grocery store and purchase said item, right? Sovereignty is about freedom, and being able to purchase any food we desire at any time we want is freedom at its finest, no? Not so fast.

What is food sovereignty? In the simplest context, food sovereignty is indeed about food freedom, control over one’s food, and establishing access to nutritious food as a basic human right.

The term “food sovereignty” was coined by members of Via Campesina in 1996. Following is a statement on Peoples’ Food Sovereignty by Via Campesina, et al.

Food sovereignty is the right of peoples to define their own food and agriculture; to protect and regulate domestic agricultural production and trade in order to achieve sustainable development objectives; to determine the extent to which they want to be self reliant; to restrict the dumping of products in their markets; and to provide local fisheries-based communities the priority in managing the use of and the rights to aquatic resources. Food sovereignty does not negate trade, but rather, it promotes the formulation of trade policies and practices that serve the rights of peoples to safe, healthy and ecologically sustainable production.

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Baked Eggs

Attempting to find clever ways to keep my hubby and myself fed on market days, in a relatively nutritious and affordable way, I decided to try out this single serve baked egg recipe I came across at Food In Jars. Looks Yummy! I can’t wait until Eric sees these.

single serve omelette

Single serve baked egg omelette with red pepper, green onion, and Parmesan cheese

You can follow the recipe here. I filled mine with sauteed red pepper, green onions, Parmesan cheese,  and Twin Oaks Farm organic eggs – of course!

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Posted by on May 28, 2011 in Cooking and Gardening, DIY


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Cranky Yankee Tomato Basket

Spending four hours every Saturday at the farmers market can induce tedium at times, especially between the season. Spring break is over and summer isn’t quite in full swing. I find that the littlest things bring  inspiration, create conversation, and if nothing else, can often provoke reflection and contemplation.  This Saturday was no exception.

I took the opportunity to ride the Soap Peddlers newly electrified Xtracycle. Note to self: bring my electric bike so we can compare notes. I talked with several locals who shared their garden successes and failures, and I made plans with Twin Oaks Farm to do the New Leaf Market Farm Tour in October. As usual, I did a little bartering. This time with the Cranky Yankee, who sells beautiful veggie starts and the occasional seasonal item from his garden. I couldn’t help but notice his clever refashioning of a manila folder into a tomato basket.  Check it out.

cranky yankee tomatoes

Cranky Yankee Tomatoes in a refashioned manila folder


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