Dig for Victory: Soil II

soil ph test

Dig for Victory is a primer for the kitchen gardener. Every few weeks or so we’ll publish a new post to build on our technical knowledge of gardening. You’re under the capable hand of Steve here. Let me know what you think and if you’d like anything in particular to be covered. Enjoy!

Part two
There’s no such thing as good or bad soil in the natural world, yet it makes a world of difference for us humans when we cultivate the land for food. Thus it pays to be observant. You want to ensure that your potential growing area receives at least six hours sunlight—that’s a given. Yet you should also note the type of plants already growing there; they impart information on soil acidity, the presence of—and the potential for—ground moisture and weeds. They can also indicate what has been previously grown there and what type of nutrients may be present in the soil. More


Fair Food Week: the new story of food

fair food week
If you’re thinking of planning a farm tour, long table lunch, skill workshop or seed swap… plan it for Fair Food Week! The week (August 19-25) is organised by the Australian Food Sovereignty Alliance, co-ordinated by Nick Rose—check out his story. Anyone can have a bash; your event needn’t be fancy. Just collect your friends and followers—think of a happening that fits the theme of ‘Fair Food’ and add it to the website. Hell, I might even!

In case you didn’t know FlavourCrusader is organising a social media photo competition for the week… so dust off your Hasselblad or um…. iPhone! And follow or like us to be kept in the loop. We’ve had an amazing response for our call for prizes from wonderful small business. Can’t wait to share who they are… I’m chuffed!

It’s time to bang the drums and wake up Australia. Are you ready for this!? More


Dig for Victory: Soil I

gardening basics soil

Dig for Victory is a primer for the kitchen gardener. Every few weeks or so we’ll publish a new post to build on our technical knowledge of gardening. You’re under the capable hand of Steve here. Let me know what you think and if you’d like anything in particular to be covered. Enjoy!

Part one
It’s beneath our feet, it’s our planet’s namesake and when we die, we return to it. Don’t call this life-supporting substance dirt, for that belies its significance.

Soil is central to organic management. It provides raw minerals, gases and water; has complex relationships with micro and macro fauna for everything aboveground; and anchors flora into the ground. In many ways, it’s more of a relationship than a “thing”. More


ExtraOrdinary Food

parsnips

It’s all too easy to find garbage for sale and poorly described as “Fresh Veg”. Too often the length of time from harvest to kitchen results in something limp with little flavour and texture. Nor is the resultant item demonstrative of the diversity, taste or the rich history of vegetables. Is it any wonder that some people find vegetables a chore when there is so little choice and the produce purchased is far from its best?

The most important thing to consider when buying vegetables is the variety and whether or not it’s in season. Out of season produce has been frozen, transported, stored and is generally treated like a “product”. Not produce.

Cooking to preserve or enhance the flavour is also important. A good omnivorous cook should have plenty of vegetable dishes up their sleeve! An interesting diet is a diverse one; it should be rich with vegetables with the meat as an accompaniment. And let’s face it, boiled vegetables become tiresome very quickly.

So let’s all get better acquainted with vegetables and matters of deliciousness. More


^%&* Corporate Food; let’s fund the Family Farm!

crowdfund family farmWhen CEOs can sneeze and earn a million dollars whilst family farmers are packing up to go, you know that something is Wrong. We can grumble and moan, but whilst we do… some farmers are putting in the hard yards and making up something totally new. They know that food grown well, with flavour and with the support of their community is the way they’ll not only survive, but thrive. More


Marketing food to children


Anna Lappe of Food Mythbusters summaries the insidious marketing practices of Corporations in selling food to children. And kicks it with her closing:
“Food companies say that it’s up to parents to raise healthy kids. And that’s why I say to those corporations, then leave parenting to us. Don’t tell children what’s good to put into their bodies! And to the junk food industry I say this, my children—all of our children—are none of your business.”


EcoCity Food Forum Lightning Talks


Healthy food systems are the foundation for healthy lives, communities, economies and ecosystems. In order to build a future for Melbourne in which we can all thrive, we need a food system that is sustainable, resilient and fair. More


Allan Savory: How to green the world’s deserts and reverse climate change


Desertification of the world’s grasslands, Allan Savory suggests, is the immediate cause of poverty, social breakdown, violence, cultural genocide — and a significent contribution to climate change. In the 1960s, while working in Africa on the interrelated problems of increasing poverty and disappearing wildlife, Savory made a significant breakthrough in understanding the degradation and desertification of grassland ecosystems. After decades of study and collaboration, thousands of managers of land, livestock and wildlife on five continents today follow the methodology he calls “Holistic Management.”

This article was originally published at TED.