I thought I should replay this episode from last winter because the applications for School Gardens opens in 2 weeks on September 1st and I thought educators and people who want to help get a garden in their school would be interested. Applications are due by October 15th.
I’m just thrilled to be back behind the mic it’s January 7th. I have a great guest that was recommended by Lem Tingley from Growing Spaces in episode 256 and here from the Whole Kids Foundation is Nona Evans!
It’s always so much fun to see how seeds that you sprinkled about germinate. It’s so fun to know how we connected!
Thank you so much! I reached out to you and you said you checked out the podcast and thought it’d be a perfect fit. Tell listeners about the Whole Kids Foundation because I had never heard of it!
We are on the order of things, a pretty moderate size non-profit organization. We are Whole Kids Foundation and our mission to improve kids nutrition because we know when kids are well nourished they learn better have the opportunity to reach their full potential.
we found 3 ways we are capable of reaching children.
Because the moment you put a salad bar in kids have the power of choice and kids get to choose the vegetables they want.
which is how I connected with you.
we have the honor and pleasure with supporting
5,000 school gardens in
USA, UK and canada
we know when kids are connected to the roots of their food they make better school choices.
it’s not just kids
It’s not just kids it’s us adults too
when we start understanding what the magic we all make good choices.
Personally I’m a foodie
I’ve worked in the food business my whole life but I didn’t meet vegetables until I was well into my 20s. Kids need to know food needs to come.
Are you a rockstar millennial? Born between 80-95.
I was not
I’m much older then that. I spent
You sure sound young! Is it related to Whole Foods or is it separate?
I worked at Whole Foods Markets
We are independent organization we are not connected now.
Their ongoing gift to us which is amazing they provide the funs for the admin budget!
every dollar we raise goes to schools and programming
So it’s a wonderful thing they have done. We have work in every market, where there is a Whole Foods Markets
100s of other stores.
So I have a question? What is salad bar equipment? Is that like knives and forks? or the salad bar itself? The fruit and salad bar was a huge hit at the schools I was at.
we have learned over the 10 yeas we’ve been supporting salad bars there is
Is a plastic model
Generally you find the salad bar in the cafeteria which later becomes the gym and the theater
So they fold up and roll out of the way when we need to.
if anyone is interested
I come from the grocery store and I always tell people if you can imagine I work in the
If I had to leave the prepared foods department tomorrow and all the delicious scrumptious food and learn what to do to start.
A school that has never cooked and prepped any food
That’s done with the cooks right? Not the students.
generally work with school service
same cafeteria staff that serves school lunch today can supply and support and serve the salad bar
There are an amazing number of schools that are using another tool kit
to grow food at their school afters school and then use it in the cafeteria!
favorite projects to talk about is to
Encinitas Union School District It’s the largest organic school farm in the nation
They are on about 9 acres, growing crops growing food in their High school kitchen! And then turned into recipes for their High School Food program!
It’s just thrilling!
I think that’s a great question! You know I’m certain that I had some early garden experiences but the one that was really important to where I am now is I married a lovely fellow who’s family were German farmers. He always tells the story of how in middle school he bought the copy of the
and he put a paper bag cover on it so no one would figure out he was reading it about gardening. He inspired me one of our favorite activities was the day after election day we would go pick up all of the election signs on their wooden stakes and use those for our tomatoes. We were crafty back then!
That is crafty and I’ll be they were glad they didn’t have to pick them up themselves that you were recycling for them.
I think because I’ve always loved food, the nature of organics was always second nature so in my garden, I never wanted to use pesticides but there’s so much more to organic gardening
Because I travel extensively,
because we get to garden at whole kids with people all over the country and sometimes we bring them to Texas!
Now any time we do a volunteer project I’m always sure to tell people watch for fire ants! They are really challenging!
I didn’t know that cayenne pepper can relocate them very effectively! So I always keep a big carafe of cayenne pepper in my garden.
I battled snails for a long time. I tried to do it humanely and someone told me about a beer trap that was a good organic solution!
I want to hear about the fire ants because some of my guests have talked about the struggle with fire ants. Especially Jenny Jackson down in Georgia, they’re like a family farm, I know they have a new baby.
They don’t like it. I’m not sure it could work on the scale of a farm but for my backyard that’s 200 square feet it will locate them.
I’ll see them crop up in the corner of my basil bed so I sprinkle a little application of cayenne and they’ll usually go somewhere else and I can usually get them out of the garden beds. That has been my experience! And I’m a grocery girl, so it’s pretty good return on your investment! Low cost.
It’s so funny! I think as a multi year gardeners, just because it grew well this year doesn’t mean anything!
I actually planted from seed in 2017m in Texas we had that hurricane Harvey that blew through. All of my beautiful kale plants were literally laying on the soil!,all I could do
The kale just regrew! I had the same kale for us for 2 years!
so well, I let it go to seed, I decided I was going to let it save the seed
if you have never saved kale seed for about 2 acres!
it is a commitment! They are teeny teeny and wow is it time intense!
I let it go to seed in its own spot. I loved the pretty yellow flowers.
I will relish any time I get to pay $3-4 for a packet of kale seeds now. Did you it’s a delicacy! The kale flowers.
Restaurants are selling them at a premium!
They roast the seeds themselves?
I kind of fell in love with kale last year. I didn’t really like it but I fell in love with that lacinto kale last year. Now the curly kale that came back in the spring I have to say was so tender and delicious I mean I never tasted anything so sweet. It was like adding maple syrup to my stir fry!
I will send you some great recipes!
There’s 2 things
For a couple of years now I have always wanted to grow amaranth I just think it is so amazingly beautiful and talk about health value. I’m not sure it would make it to the table but I enjoy it in the bouquets
Chef Dan Barber
because we have cultivated crops for their ship ability and longevity
they might look funny
might not ship across the country really well but they have amazing flavor!
beets and peppers
I would like to talk to as many chefs as I can.
I have a question about amaranth, because it’s a great cover crop right even if it doesn’t get harvested at least it’s good for the soil right? I struggle to grow it too.
I think what I have learned over more seasons then I care to admit
I always end up planting something for the benefit for the garden friends
Sometimes it’s the dill that I plant that I don’t eat but it’s just for the monarch butterflies
Last year it was chard
I do so well with my chard
last years chard was just for the snails.
That could be tough. I love chard! I had so much between the chard and the kale I don’t think I bought a salad from August till November. What I love about rainbow chard is I will eat it instead of celery those big stems!
that was the thing that I was like OK! you guys have the chard and stay off everything else and we’re good! It’s a symbiosis!
I love your attitude about it too! Like it wasn’t such a giant loss you felt compelled you had to get rid of the snails. You just sacrificed it to the snails!
We can grow something for mother nature.