Farm & Garden

At Flowerland

  Coffee, and a Witty Marquee Illustration by Cathy Raingarden Tooling up Solano Avenue, it’s hard to miss the big and welcoming vintage sign for Flowerland. Constructed in 1947 by the Pleich family, the building has always been a nursery, and it has always been Flowerland. “I purchased the business from Bob Willson in October…

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What’s in Season?

Produce harvested at its peak is your sure bet for flavor and freshness. By Barbara Kobsar | Illustration by Charmaine Koehler-Lodge May Something unexpectedly sweet is at the farmers’ market right now. Known as Sweet Imperial, Vidalia, or Walla Walla—depending on whether your sweet onion hails from Southern California, Georgia, or Washington state—it’s also called…

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Teaming Up Against Toxins

  Cal students and groundskeepers see beyond the spotlessly green fields by Rachel Trachten Monsanto probably didn’t see trouble brewing on a campus beach volleyball court. In the spring of 2017, UC Berkeley junior Mackenzie Feldman heard her coach tell the players not to chase the ball in bare feet if it went off the…

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Happy Acre Farm

Recipe for a Happy Acre Two young farmers, one selfie-loving mutt, and a baby in the broccoli crate By Cheryl Angelina Koehler | Photos by Helena and Matthew Sylvester Farming as a vocation often calls to mind dire reports on the demise of the family enterprise and the aging out of our nation’s farmer community.…

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Garden Allies

Friends, partners, collaborators, cohabitors . . . Grown together, plants can be more than the sum of their parts   By Joshua Burman Thayer  | Illustrations by Cheryl Angelina Koehler Did you know that plants form alliances? Like humans, plants do better when they associate with other plants for mutual benefit, such as to procreate,…

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What’s in Season?

Produce harvested at its peak is your sure bet for flavor and freshness. By Barbara Kobsar | Illustration by Charmaine Koehler-Lodge   February Dense in texture but mild in flavor, cauliflower offers endless possibilities in salads, pastas, soups, snacks, sauces, hummus, and even mac and cheese. We find it in a myriad of colors these…

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Top Cap Mushrooms

It all started with a shiitake mushroom fascination. At the time, Morgan Proctor and Greg Olson both had administrative positions in urban offices and were living in a small space in Oakland with no outdoor area for plants. Given their shared interests in nature, nutrition, and gardening, and after being wait-listed at a community garden,…

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Gardener’s Notebook

An Edible Hedgerow in the City By Joshua Burman Thayer “Thrush in a Fig Tree” illustration by Rigel Stuhmiller In our densely packed urban areas, space is at a premium. Courtyards, corridors, driveways, and narrow strips along property lines can seem lost for gardening use, but there are strategies for filling those zones with plants…

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What’s in Season?

Produce harvested at its peak is your sure bet for flavor and freshness.   By Barbara Kobsar | Illustration by Charmaine Koehler-Lodge   AUGUST It’s pear season! One of the earliest European-variety pears to arrive at market is the Bartlett, easily recognized by its bell shape, semi-soft flesh, and yellow-to-red skin color. The green-skinned d’Anjou;…

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Fall Planting Guide

As the days shorten and the stress of the sun lessens, we’re in a prime window for planting perennial evergreen species that can provide your household with edible abundance. That window stays open from early October until the third or fourth day of our first big storm, when the soil will start to be too…

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