Monday, December 6, 2010

What Food Says About Class in America - Newsweek

What Food Says About Class in America - Newsweek: "Joel Berg, executive director of the New York City Coalition Against Hunger, says these programs are good, but they need to go much, much further. He believes, like Fischler, that the answer lies in seeing food more as a shared resource, like water, than as a consumer product, like shoes. “It’s a nuanced conversation, but I think ‘local’ or ‘organic’ as the shorthand for all things good is way too simplistic,” says Berg. “I think we need a broader conversation about scale, working conditions, and environmental impact. It’s a little too much of people buying easy virtue.”"

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Pear Picking at Keene Acres in Seville, Fla

Mr Keene himself...
A six-year-old pear tree, full of Pineapple or Sand Pears (Pyrus communis). Hard, sweet, somewhat gritty. $5 per bucket of twelve or fifteen pears.

An Anna Apple (tropical). Miles also has Dorset Apples. Both are tropical apples, suitable for Central Florida. My Anna has grown well, but my Dorset had fungal issues and is recovering slowly. Miles reports that he had tons of apples this May on these small trees. (Annas in particular are know as heavy bearers.)

Miles has a lovely place--eleven acres. In addition to landscaping trees and plants, he raises peaches, nectarines, persimmons, pears and tons of citrus. Much of the fruit is available for you-pick.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Food security...

A thoughtful video from Japan. Their situation isn't terribly different from our own, with the important caveats that 1) they deal with far less arable land per person than in the USA; and 2) they have traditional food-ways to fall back upon.

I'm not an adamant vegetarian, but I am very careful to limit the animal flesh that I eat. One of the many reasons that I have chosen this diet is that eating meat is prodigiously wasteful.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Wildflowers: Safety, savings bloom on Florida's roadways --

It's a start...
Wildflowers: Safety, savings bloom on Florida's roadways -- "Contract manager Chris Grossenbacher, a consultant to the DOT, said that not mowing during spring and fall blooms and especially not during the seeding phase has resulted in an explosion of naturally occurring wildflowers."
I think sometimes that people believe that what looks normal is some sort of universal, eternal state. But what looks normal is culturally defined. We've gotten used to, say, St Augustine lawns as what looks "normal" and people are afraid to upset that norm. However, given time we can reset what counts as normal and, if we're careful, that new normal can be much more interesting...

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Brother, can you spare a grapefruit?

An interesting idea in today's Times:

Neighbor, Can You Spare a Plum?


THE loquats were ripe and just begging to be picked.

But there was a problem. Although the tree was planted on private property, the loaded branches hung over the street.

Did that make the fruit public property?

In the end, with no one around to ask, Asiya Wadud decided the answer was yes. So she added them to a bag already heavy with Meyer lemons picked (with permission) from a yard a few blocks away. Then she headed off to check on some plum trees.
The article identifies two websites devoted to fruit sharing: and I checked them both out and neither had listings for Florida. But maybe someday?

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Peach farm

My friend Christine visited at the end of May. I'll ask her how it was... Florida peaches are sweet and juicy! (I know, I grow some.)

Florida Peach Farms & Nurseries – Is the best kept secret in OCALA. A farm that produces the best peaches you have ever tasted. They are delicious, tree ripe, very sweet and juicy, and very colorful. It is seasoned April to June every year. We open to the public for UPICK around Mother’s Day.

Our Mission is to provides the best peach you have ever tested in a family environment with a taste of paradise.

Location: Florida Peach Farms & Nurseries is located in Citra Florida at 5109 East Highway 316, 3.0 miles East of Jacksonville Road (200A) on Highway 316. Signs are posted at the entrance of the farm.

Note: I just talked to the guy today (June 3) and he said that, because of the frosts, the season is short. He thinks that there will be peaches through the end of next week. I might try to find the time to run over there next week...