Sunday, 28 October 2012

Process Garlic, the many ways we

Still going strong, but with a change in focus.

Task 1 - clean up the gardens, put 'em to bed for the winter. There have been few photo-suiting moments to show y'all but there's as much opportunity left for that as there is work to be done, which is a lot.

Task 2 - learn to write more clearly.

Task 3 - form like Voltron to process and plant our garlic. We had a big session today to put the little allium ducks in a row. Here's a preview of what we will be planting in the next week or so, a total of 4320 all within the city limits! This will be the 4th Vancouver growing season for these seeds, we believe they're getting quite settled in to our climate.
  • Chesnok Red - 600
  • Russian Red - 600
  • Persian Star - 600
  • Yugoslavian - 600
  • Purple Glazer - 440
  • Leningrad - 435
  • Musica - 265
  • Rojo de Castro (creole) - 380
  • Burgundy (creole) - 400
We have a bit of garlic left for sale, excellent for eating and planting, and going for the outrageously low price of $10/lbs. Contact us at if you're interested and check out our product profiles to learn about the distinguishing features of our varieties.
  • Chesnok Red - 18.5lbs
  • Persian Star - 11lbs
  • Burgundy Creole - 2lbs (rare variety price exception - $15/lbs)
  • Russian Red - 5lbs
  • Musica - 5lbs
  • Yugoslavian - 3.5lbs 
Throughout the sorting process, there is always a percentage of garlic that is perfectly edible but not quite fit for public sale. We place those cloves aside and send them home with the help. Here are a few images of one way of dealing with an excess of garlic that needs to be used up asap before it succumbs to the rot.

Materials: Garlic seconds, jars, olive oil, food processor, cutting board and knife
Picked over and peeled
Into the food processor at a 3:1 garlic to olive oil portioning
A few quick pulses
Jarred up and ready for the freezer
One note of caution, put the jars in the freezer right away. If the jars are left at room temperature, we are creating a nice habitat for botulism-causing bacteria. Here's some more info on the risks.

We let the jar sit on the counter for a few minutes so it thaws enough to scoop some out, then we throw it right back in the freezer.

Sunday, 7 October 2012

Harvest #14 - October 7, 2012

This week is the last harvest for our CSA and it was a good size share to round out the season. Thanks to all of our shareholders for your support. The process of growing, harvesting and sharing produce is made that much better by knowing that the goods are going to feed amazing people. We feel blessed to be a part of your community.

Pics from the morning's harvest:

Bunching carrots
Counting collards
A weird carrot (for Russia)
This week's items:
  • Chesnok or Russian Red Garlic
  • Lemon Cukes
  • Green Beans
  • Chieftain Potatoes
  • Mixed Tomatoes
  • Collard Greens
  • Red Ace & Chioggia Beets
  • Scarlett Nantes Carrots
  • Redwing Onions
  • Thyme
  • Rosemary
Red Ace Beets
Collard Greens
Green Beans
Redwing Onions, soil and all
Carrot close-ups
Cukes in October
Last of the spuds
And an enormous shouting THANKS to our incredible interns, who have now become official ICF associates and good friends. We are beyond fortunate and eternally grateful for your presence in the gardens this season.
Setting the bar pretty high!
There's still lots of work left and we will continue to post our progress over the next couple of months. Please contact us ( if you are interested in purchasing any garlic (see previous post for available varieties, excluding the creoles) or getting on the 2013 CSA list (5 shares sold already!).

Happy Thanksgiving!

Sunday, 30 September 2012

Harvest #13 - September 30, 2012

First off, a quick reminder to our shareholders that there will be a harvest next Sunday! Come early so that the ICF veggies can be incorporated into your Thanksgiving meal. We are usually set up and ready to go right at 2:30pm, just in time for turkey.

Thanks again to Owen, Naomi and everyone else involved in last night's Railway Moonshiner. The food was excellent, the drinks were incredible (both the R & B cask and the 'Hoppy Hemingway' cocktail) and the space was inspirational. Met a number of interesting folks too and had great conversations about food and farming. My iPhone photography doesn't do it justice but here's a glimpse of the transformed working space at Union Wood Co.

The space cleans up nicely.
 We had lots of bodies out for today's harvest which was perfect for combing through the bush beans. This freed up sometime for pollinator stalking. Our volunteer sunflowers were attracting some native and honey bees, the former looking a little shaky but still out and about in the late season.
Beautiful little Bombus
Still punching the clock as we head into Fall

r = c \sqrt{n},
\theta = n \times 137.5^{\circ},
Here's the crew in the beans, beneath the Helianthus tree.

Reflecting on mixed bunches of kale
As the season wanes, the weekly shares tend to get a little smaller. Here's today's harvest line-up:
  • Carrots, scarlett nantes 
  • Mixed bag of tomatoes (copia, green zebra, sungolds, cherries, orange russian, and Siebenb├╝rgen)
  • Green wax beans
  • Persian star garlic
  • Mixed kale, winterbor & redbor
  • Lemon cucumbers
Some phenomenal carrots this week
Killer kale
Siebenb├╝rgen tomato
Orange Russians
Green beans still holding on
The Drill on patrol

Thursday, 27 September 2012

Railway Moonshiner

Plans for Saturday evening? If you like cask beer, appreciate hand crafted woodwork and dig fine cuisine using Vancouver-grown veggies (ours), join us at the Railway Moonshiner!

This is a special collaboration put together by the fine folks of Butter on the Endive accompanied by the head brewer from R & B Brewing Company and located at Union Wood and Supply CO's digs. For a glimpse of the woodworking artistry, check out this article from Scout magazine - pretty amazing. You can get a preview of Chef Owen Lightly's menu for the evening here, but you have to be present on Saturday night to experience Todd Graham's cask.

Hope to see y'all there!

Thursday, 20 September 2012

MONTECRISTO Magazine Article on Urban Ag

We were fortunate enough to be interviewed for an article on urban farming in Vancouver for one of Vancouver's finest publications: MONTECRISTO Magazine.

Screenshot of the beginning of the article
We're one of three groups covered in the piece - the other two being Sole Food and Victory Gardens, fine company if you ask me.

Here's the article, and here's the short video they produced to accompany the story.

Looking sharp Cam & Drill!