How to Start a Crop Swap

Backyard gardeners and urban homesteaders are coming together to share excess produce in increasingly popular local meet-ups known as crop swaps, where neighbors exchange, say, beets and greens for apples and squash. Some crop swaps include trades for honey, eggs, flowers, and preserved or prepared foods, too.

Read How to Start a Crop Swap by Sarah Henry in Shareables.

August 16, 2017 at 10:49 am Leave a comment

Why and How to Shop by Bike

The benefits

1. You save money

I can fit only so much food on my bike when I shop so I buy only what I need. The limited space on my bike makes impulse buys—always processed and almost always packaged in plastic—very difficult unless I eat them on the spot at the store or while riding home, risking my life for chocolate.

2. You eat fresher food

When you shop by bike, because you can bring only so much home, you make a few trips every week rather than one trip every week or two. You have very fresh food on hand, it tastes better and you waste less of it because it has less time to turn before you can eat it. This takes a bit more time than major shopping just once every week or two does, however, on these frequent trips, I can zip in and out with my smaller purchases and often go in the 10-items-or-less aisle. And I’m working some exercise into my shopping too, which I need to do anyway (see #4).

Read Why and How to Shop by Bike at Zero Waste Chef.

August 14, 2017 at 11:07 am Leave a comment

Food Fest / CoTICon/Ontario 150 Culture Stage

Saturday, August 19, 10- 8 from the St. Lawrence River, along Pitt St. right up to Third Street. This year, the food fest is partnering with two other popular events and together they will offer a day of fun in Cornwall. For complete details.

August 11, 2017 at 10:50 am Leave a comment

We’re Teaching Kids the Wrong Ways to Fight Climate Change

Illustration courtesy of Seth Wynes and Kimberly Nicholas, 2017, Environmental Research Letters

When Seth Wynes was teaching high school science in Canada, there was one question his students asked him that he had trouble answering: What can I do to stop climate change? The existence of climate change was an unpleasant surprise for many of them—they had grown up hearing adults talk about things like peak oil in doom-laden tones, so the news that humans would trash the atmosphere before they even reached peak oil filled them with alarm. They wanted to do something.

Then Wynes began comparing their resesarch to climate-related documents aimed at teenagers and adults in the three most high-emitting countries on the list: Canada, Australia, and the United States. He wanted to know—were the actions on his list the same as the actions these documents recommended?

They were not, as Wynes and Nicholas reveal in a paper that was published this week in the journal Environmental Research Letters. The most high-impact actions on his list, like living without a car, avoiding transatlantic flights, and eating a plant-based diet were often ignored entirely in educational climate change materials, which favored less-effective actions like recycling and using more energy-efficient lightbulbs.

Read the full article We’re Teaching Kids the Wrong Ways to Fight Climate Change by Heather Smith at Sierra Club.

August 9, 2017 at 10:37 am Leave a comment

Central Canada pounded by ‘severe hardships’ as flooding continues

 A new report shows high water levels and floods are still pounding Central Canada and causing “severe hardships” to residents and business owners, almost three months after a joint Canada-United States body warned of “major coastal flooding.”

Water is rushing into Lake Ontario at “close to record-high values for this time of year,” the board has said, complicating an effort it began in June to drain the lake at “unprecedented” rates.

The extended period of high water is in line with warnings from both politicians and Canadian scientists, who have anticipated that climate change will increase the “frequency and severity of extreme weather events” such as floods, heat waves and droughts.

Read the full article Central Canada pounded by ‘severe hardships’ as flooding continues by Carl Meyer at the National Observer.

August 7, 2017 at 10:50 am Leave a comment

Eastern Ontario Garlic Festival (new venue)

Sunday August 27, 11:00 – 4:00 Nav Centre 1950 Montreal Road, Cornwall, Cornwall is 1 hour from Montreal and Ottawa From garlic and farmers market producers, to artisans and live musical entertainment. A corn roast, a beer and wine garden, local foodies, workshops, and more are all part of this year’s 150th Celebration of Everything Local. Check out the web site.

August 4, 2017 at 12:06 pm Leave a comment

Now’s the Time to Think About Your Fall Garden

Image result for garden carrots

Cool autumn weather favors a long list of leafy greens and root crops, from spinach and kale to radishes and rutabagas. Planting fall crops may be the last thing on your mind during the dog days of summer, but growing a garden to maturity before cold weather sets in means getting started in mid- to late-summer, just as the first warm-weather crops start to peter out.

It’s easiest to start fall crops in flats rather than sow the seeds directly in the ground, so you can start them in a partially shaded area outdoors or in a sunny window indoors. The seedbed needs to remain evenly moist for germination to occur, which may require watering several times a day if temperatures are in the 90s. Alternatively, string up a canopy of shade cloth over a bed and start them directly where they are to grow.

Get inspired for your fall garden with the list of cool weather crops below. The approximate days to maturity are given for each crop.

Read the full article Now’s the Time to Think About Your Fall Garden by Brian Barth at Modern Farmer.

August 2, 2017 at 10:33 am Leave a comment

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