LexFarm Update: Eating with the Ecosystem TONIGHT

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Allison Moody

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Feb 28, 2013, 8:45:11 AM2/28/13
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February 28, 2013


RFP Update

The Board of Selectmen approved the final RFP for the Lexington Community Farm at their meeting Monday evening. From the brief discussion at the Selectmens' meeting, it appears that the RFP incorporates some of the important public comments on the initial draft.  In particular, it contains a greater emphasis on the benefits the farm would bring to the community and enables the Selectmen to appoint a committee that will oversee the Community Farm.

Now that it has been approved, we expect the RFP to be issued and advertised within two to three weeks. The response will be due 60 days later, and we expect a decision by early summer.




News from the Goat Yard

five goats in
                          barn
How well do you know our goats? Can you tell who's missing from this photo? Who's that in front looking up at the camera. And can you tell which one Naya is? (Hint: she's expecting new kids in May).

Now that much of the snow has melted and the yard is more accessible, you can re-acquaint yourself with the herd! The LexFarm Goat Yard will be re-opening for public visiting hours, this Sunday, March 3 from 1 - 3 pm. We hope you'll come visit!  Be sure to wear boots and bring along some pine branches for some very "Grateful for Greens" goats!




Farm History Panel

Sunday, March 17th, Science Lecture Hall, LHS, 1 - 3 pm

Get your Golden Ticket and don't miss it!

LexFarm member Carolyn Goldstein has organized an incredible panel of speakers for Sunday, March 17th, for Lexington's 300th Anniversary Incorporation Weekend Celebrations.

The panelists will include August "Gus" Schumacher, Jr. who grew up on a farm in Lexington, served as Commissioner of Food and Agriculture for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, and currently serves on the 21st Century Sustainable Agricultural Task Force of the National Academy of Sciences. 

You can read more information here, but this is a not-to-be-missed event and we are expecting a full house at the Science Lecture Hall at LHS on that day. Lexington residents can purchase a "Golden Ticket" at the Town Clerk's office for $1 that will guarantee a seat.

We hope to make some Golden Tickets available for LexFarm members as well. (Members stay tuned!)



LAST CHANCE for Eating with the Ecosystem!

February 28, nourish Restaurant, Lexington, 6 - 9 pm

nourishTonight's the night!
Reservations: (781) 674-2400

Don't miss out on this wonderful opportunity to dine on the FIRST Boston Eating with the Ecosystem Food series! 
This series was first initiated in Rhode Island as a community-based effort to support local, sustainable seafood and has since made its ways over to Boston. 

nourish Restaurant will be hosting the first part this evening, Eating with the Ecosystem Boston sustainable seafood series and will serve a spectacular and unforgettable dinner featuring seafood from Southern New England waters, from Buzzards Bay to Long Island Sound.  You'll also get to learn more about the difference you're making eating local seafood from scientist Nathan Rebuck and fisherman Katie Eagan, and the impact it has on our delicate ecosystem.

Future dinners include "Gulf of Maine" on March 26th at The Local Table in Acton and "Georges Bank" at Ten Tables in Jamaica Plain. 

The dinner at nourish is the first of the series and the most affordably priced at $30 per person. Reservations can be made through the restaurant at (781) 674-2400.




Farm to Lectern Speaker Series with Brian Donahue

March 7, Concord Museum, 7 pm, free admission

donahueJoin the Concord Museum in its lecture series to hear farmer, author, co-founder and former director of Land's Sake in Weston, Brian Donahue will be discussing his recent book, The Great Meadow:  Farmers and the Land in Colonial Concord and Reclaiming the Commons:  Community Farms and Forests in a New England Town, in addition to sharing his views on farming and agriculture in New England.

Refreshments from The Concord Cheese Shop will also be provided at this event.  For more information, please visit http://concordmuseum.org/visit/calendar.html or call the Concord Museum to make reservations at 978-369-9763, ext. 216.


Community Conversation on Climate Change


We saw a number of LexFarm members at Tuesday's "Community Conversation" on Lexington's readiness for Climate Change. It was a great chance to meet others interested in the topic, and brainstorm all sorts of ideas. There will be follow-up articles in the Colonial Times newspaper, and we expect lots of ideas to take root...stay tuned!

The planning committee for this second annual Community Conversation included members of the following Lexington groups: the League of Women Voters; the Global Warming Action Committee; Citizens for Lexington Conservation; Sustainable Lexington; LexFarm; the Planning Board, and the Town Manager's office.



Membership Corner


Meet LexFarm Member Rick Abrams "ACROSS Lexington"

We are extremely grateful to all those who support our work through LexFarm membership. As you might expect, our members are doing all sorts of great work in the community, and we like to highlight this work when we know about it.

We want to tell you about an exciting project in Lexington spearheaded by LexFarm member Rick Abrams called "ACROSS Lexington", a project to build a town-wide network of paths and trails to connect public lands, including recreation areas and conservation land.

A Pilot route is now available and Rick will be leading a two-hour walk on that route on Sunday, March 17th at 10 am as part of Lexington's 300th anniversary Incorporation Weekend. In addition, Rick has gifted the town with a special fund in his honor upon retiring. This fund will specifically help Lexington realize this wonderful project. Thank You, Rick!

We would love to count you among our members! You can join today by visiting lexfarm.org/membership


Wild Edible Plant Series

This series covers wild edible plants found in New England as told in Russ Cohen's book, "Wild Plants I Have Known... and Eaten."  If you haven't had the chance, take some time to read this delightfully informative book to find out more on wild plants for sustainable eating.

Note:  If you are unfamiliar with harvesting wild edibles, please consult a plant expert before attempting to forage on your own.

Part Ten: Juneberry (Amelanchier canadensis)

juneberryThe juneberry plant is named so because the berries of the plant start to ripen throughout June, which occur about six weeks after they start to flower.  It is also referred to as the shadbush because its five-pointed, white petaled flowers start to bloom around the time shad fish swim upstream to reproduce.  It's other nickname, the "Serviceberry" tree, is thought to be derived from the use of its branches for decorations at Easter time, while others believe the plant, when in bloom, served as a sign that ground soil over the winter was soft enough to dig up for burying the deceased.

The way to tell a juneberry tree is by its smooth, gray bark, it's great height of 12 inches, and it's wide, ridged, bright green leaves.  Juneberries can grow in very high, hard-to-reach parts of the tree and are enjoyed by birds as well.  They are commonly found by rivers and lakes, and because of their attractive appearance, they are also commonly grown in parks and other landscaped areas. 

Juneberries are very similar in appearance to Highbush blueberries, except that they turn a reddish-purple when fully ripe.  While juneberries are tasty to eat, resembling the taste of cherries and almonds combined, they are often afflicted with a fungus of a Cedar-apple rust variety, covering the tree with fungal growths and causing the berries to appear misshapen and to ripen irregularly.  When healthy and ready for consumption, they can be plucked and eaten from the tree (if you can reach them), brought home for drying, or blended with more pungent-flavored berries for pies, as they can be mild in flavor when cooked.  As a food source, they are known to be high in iron, potassium, magnesium, and phosphorus, in addition to having somewhat higher calorie- content than their blueberry counterparts.  Native Americans had often dried juneberries for making Pemmican (a type of granola bar), as a low-perishable food source to last them through long journeys. 



Further Thinking

Brickyard Educational Farm is an educational vegetable garden with a mission to provide hands-on learning experiences for the children of Montgomery County Maryland.  Learn more about them by watching this video.  Also, be sure to check out "Save this Soil" in the online magazine Food Tank to learn how this citizen campaign convinced town officials to give up plans to convert their farm into soccer fields.


We welcome your feedback

Please write us at newsl...@lexfarm.org with all feedback regarding the Update or if you have suggestions for area events that we can announce.

Jeanne Lin and Allison Moody


Membership Corner

ACROSS Lexington Project


Wild Edible Series

Part Ten: Juneberry


Further Thinking

Brickyard Educational Farm


Area Events

Note: Member prices refer to membership in the organization hosting the event.

March 1
, Drumlin Farm, Lincoln, 3:30 - 5 pm
Maple Magic
It's Maple Sugaring Time! Celebrate trees and the magic sweetness of the maple in spring. Visit the maple grove to check out the taps and taste some sap. Hear about some traditional ways of making this sweet treat and compare that with today's methods. Listen to stories of the first sugar makers and delight your taste buds with an sweet maple treat. Suitable for children ages 0 - 12 with an adult.
$13 non-member, $11 member

March 2, Natick Community Organic Farm, 9 am - 3 pm
Maple Magic Day
Learn about Native American and Colonial sugaring techniques while experiencing how the Farm sugars today. Annual Pancake Breakfast from 8 - 11 am.
$6 for the tour and demonstrations, additional cost for breakfast

March 2, Stoneham, 12 noon - 1 pm
Tapping of the Trees
Come to the Fells ‘sugar bush’ to learn how to tap maple trees. Sponsored by the Department of Conservation and Recreation. Meet at the Botume House, 4 Woodland Road, Stoneham.
Free

March 2, Drumlin Farm, Lincoln, 12 noon - 4 pm
Simple Cheesemaking
Cheese is delicious and fun! You can easily make tasty cheeses from milk - both cow and goat - or cream. During this workshop, you will make and sample several different cheeses, including yogurt cheeses, paneer, mozzarella, and fresh goat. You will leave with samples, recipes, resources, and the confidence you need to pursue cheesemaking, one of the oldest forms of food preservation, on your own.
$67 non-member, $55 member

March 4
, Habitat, Belmont, 6:30 - 9 pm
Container Gardening Workshop
Join Jodie Gilson, an herb grower who has been providing Habitat with herbs since their first herb sale over 10 years ago. Learn how to create container gardens with herbs, asian greens, and more. Refreshments will be served.
$5 at the door

March 9, Habitat, Belmont, 10 am - 3 pm
Sugaring Celebration
Bring the kids and grandparents and learn how maple syrup is made from sugar maple trees. You'll try your hand at a few sugaring activities, hear stories, and visit a few places on the property including the tapped sugar trees. Then boil down a little of our sap and taste the results!
$10 non-member, $8 member

March 9
, Brookline, 1 - 3 pm
Products of the Hive: An Introduction to DIY Adventuring with Honey, Wax, and Propolis
Participants will learn some amazing facts about each of these products including how and why they are produced by the bees and their medicinal properties.  You will also review some simple recipes and how-to instruction for creating (and labeling) herb infused honey, candles, and lip balm.  Finally everyone will taste some infused honey and create lip balm from an easy-to-follow recipe.
$30 non-member, $25 NOFA member

March 9
, Lexington, 7 - 11 pm
Go Green Dance
Every year the band, Trial Run, puts on a charity dance. This year the money raised  will be used to increase GWAC’s efforts to bring climate change awareness and action programs to Lexington and greater Boston area. So come out for a night of classic rock, blues, and a dash of Motown.
$20 at the door, discounted tickets available in advance

March 12, Habitat, Belmont, 3:30 - 5 pm
The Secret Life of Maple Syrup
Have you ever wondered where real maple syrup comes from? How do you find it? What makes it magically flow every spring? In this class, you'll even collect sap, boil it down, and sample your very own syrup! Suitable for children ages 6 - 10.
$17 non-member, $14 member

March 16 & 17, Drumlin Farm, Lincoln, 9 am - 1 pm
Sap-to-Syrup Farmer's Breakfast
Real Vermont maple syrup on fresh pancakes is the centerpiece of Mass Audubon's Drumlin Farm's annual Sap-to-Syrup Farmer's Breakfast, but don't forget about the homemade sausage and roasted potatoes! Before or after your breakfast, walk the sap-to-syrup trail to explore the natural history of maple trees, and see how sap is collected from Drumlin Farm's sugar bush.
$15 for adults, $12 for children, Free for children under 2

March 16 & 23, Newton Community Farm, 9:30 - 11 am
Defensive Urban Gardening
You have just spent your weekend planting your little seedlings only to come and inspect your work a day later to find that some local critter has had a tasty snack!! Ways to outsmart local critters, birds and insects is just one of the topics to be covered in this two part class. You will also address issues such as protecting against extreme temperatures, fungi, birds and insects using methods such as nets, row cover and even some more creative techniques.
$45 non-member, $40 member



Conferences/Seminars

March 22 - 23, Concord, NH
New England Meat Conference
The goal of the New England Meat Conference is to enhance the production, processing, and marketing of sustainable, nutritious, humanely-raised, and delicious meat from New England farms by providing educational and networking opportunities for meat producers, processors and consumers.


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Board Members

Janet Kern, President
Ken Karnofsky, Vice-President
Derek Moody, Treasurer
Ellen Frye
Jay Luker
Brenda Netreba
Charlie Radoslovich
© 2010-2013 Lexington Community Farm Coalition. All rights reserved.
P.O. Box 554 • Lexington, MA 02420 • 781-325-4170in...@lexfarm.org  http://lexfarm.org
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