WE HAVE PLANTS!
The Howdy Farm is pleased to announce our big sale event of the season. We have partnered with the Texas A&M University Horticulture Club in co-hosting a plant sale this spring!
Here are the details:
When: Saturday, April 1, 2017 starting at 9 a.m. until supplies last
Where: The lawn outside the Horticulture and Forestry Sciences Building (HSFB) on Texas A&M University's campus
Parking: Parking is available in Lot 74
We have a wide selection of plants available for purchase. We are offering multiple different varieties of each type of plant. See below for the plants we will be selling.
In addition to transplants we will also be selling farm-fresh flower arrangements and fresh-picked seasonal produce!
We hope to see you there!
The Howdy Farm would like to extend a huge thank you to Texas A&M Aggie Gentlemen of Integrity (AGI) for the hard work the men put in at the farm last Wednesday. We had about fifty of the organization's members and pledges help with weeding and mulching of various beds throughout the farm.
After what could be considered a challenging winter for the farm, it has been a long process cleaning up the aftermath of the frost. The Howdy Farm is thankful for the willingness of groups like Texas A&M AGI to assist us in preparing the grounds for planting again.
Texas A&M AGI is a men's organization focused on character development, philanthropy, accountability, selfless service, and integrity. Sergio Rivera, Texas A&M AGI's Public Relations Chair, said the organization has volunteered at the Howdy Farm in the past, and plans to make it a regular service event for members to participate in. He sees serving at the Howdy Farm as a great way to build camaraderie among the members.
"Being out there in the Texas heat sweating together really unites a team," Rivera said, "and being able to help a community that has done so much for us really makes the service valuable and rewarding."
If your organization is interested in volunteering at the farm in a group format, please see our new volunteer sign ups to register!
Created by: Kasey Heath, Spring 2017 Intern
The Howdy Farm would like to officially welcome all of the students back to Aggieland. We have an exciting semester ahead of us, so let's get started! Here's your farm update:
Over the break, our veggies took a hit from the freezing temperatures, and we lost much of our winter crop. In effect, we will not have produce sales until the beginning of March. Keep checking our website, sign up for our email notifications, and follow us on social media to stay in touch.
The Clean-up Stage
Meanwhile, our interns and volunteers have been hard at work cleaning the farm after the freeze, trimming back dead shrubs, grasses, and other plants. To make good use of the leftover residues, we plan on utilizing them for mulch. We use mulches to...
What to Look Forward to
New Volunteer Policy
We have a new protocol for volunteer hours starting this semester. The high demand of volunteer opportunities the last few semesters motivated us to start using a sign-up process. Interested students must now sign-up on our calendar for specific shifts depending on what is available on a week to week basis.
There will be no more open volunteer hours.
To sign up for volunteer hours please follow these steps!
**New spots will come available each Monday by 5:00 PM for that week!
There will be no Monday volunteer hours.
Signing up as a group or organization (6 people or more)?
Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Let's get growing!
"To plant a garden is to believe in tomorrow." -Audrey Hepburn
Photos and text by: Kasey Heath, Spring 2017 Intern
Here at the Howdy Farm we proudly grow all of our fruits, vegetables, and flowers using organic methods*. Choosing to grow organically can prove to be challenging, especially when it comes to soil nutrient management and availability. It can take several years of ammending the soil with compost and other forms of organic matter before you start to produce bountiful yields. Healthy soil is absolutely the most important component for growing nutritious and delicious foods, and we have a couple tools to share with you that will help improve your yields naturally.
If you take a stroll through the "health food" section of your local grocery store, you might notice a new drink that is gaining in popularity - kombucha. Kombucha is a probiotic drink containing millions of beneficial bacteria, which have been shown to improve digestive health. When you hear the word "bacteria" you might automatically think disease or sickness, but our bodies actually contain and thrive on beneficial bacteria as well. Our garden soil is actually very similar. Beneficial bacteria in the soil can do wonders for the health of your plants. An example of this is bacteria in the Rhizobium genus. Rhizobium is a group beneficial bacteria that form symbiotic relationships with plants in small nodules located in the plant's roots. The bacteria are capable of fixing atmospheric nitrogen, which is when they convert the nitrogen in the air into a form that the plant can use. Nitrogen is usually the most limiting plant nutrient in the soil, so this symbiotic relationship can be extremely beneficial if your soil is lacking. In return for providing nitrogen to the plant, the bacteria consume organic compounds produced by the plant through photosynthesis. Rhizobium can be used when you are growing anything in the legume family, which includes peas, beans, lentils, peanuts, soybeans, and more. The best part is that you can purchase Rhizobium anywhere you purchase seeds. Application of the bacteria is very easy - first you wet the seeds so they are slightly damp, and then you sprinkle on the bacteria so it coats the seed. That's it! So the next time that you plant beans and peas, be sure to pick up some Rhizobium powder and you will be amazed by how healthy and productive your plants turn out.
In addition to bacteria, beneficial fungi in the soil also play an important role in the health of your crops. Mycorrhizal fungi are an example of this, as they also form a symbiotic relationship with plants through the roots. Soil naturally contains mycorrhizal fungi, but by adding the fungi to your soil and plant roots, you can help build up their levels to ensure that your plants are growing to their maximum potential. Mycorrhizal fungi work by attaching to the plant roots and essentially they create a network of smaller roots that will seek out water and nutrients for the plant. The fungi benefit from the plant by receiving sugars from the plant roots in return. Dipping the roots of your transplants in a mycorrhizal drench can help alleviate transplant shock, help your plants establish faster, and it will allow the plants to grow quickly with the potential for less disease pressure. Here at the Howdy Farm we use a mycorrhizal concentrate produced by Wildroot Organic Inc., located in Boerne, TX. The product is extremely easy to use; you just mix the powder in water and then dunk your plant's roots in the solution before planting. The results are well worth the minimal effort and the addition of mycorrhizal fungi will help your soil thrive for years to come.
If you are looking for natural, quick, and effective results in your organic garden then we highly recommend that you use Rhizobium and mycorrhizal fungi the next time you plant. These two biological tools - in addition to high quality compost, organic fertilizers, and proper soil management - will help you build a soil that is alive and functional. All great gardens start with great soil, so feed your soil and prepare to reap the benefits. Happy growing!
Written by Corey Wahl - Howdy Farm Manager
*We grow using organic methods, but we are not certified organic by the USDA.
With Thanksgiving in a couple days and the winter holidays just around the corner, I wanted this week’s Howdy Farm recipe to be festive for the occasion while still using Howdy Farm’s seasonal, sustainably grown produce! And though this recipe's primary purpose isn't sustenance (although it is quite tasty, in my opinion), it will definitely put you in the mood for a delicious Thanksgiving feast. The best part is, it takes five minutes to prepare the ingredients before you toss everything onto the stove and let the magic begin! (Bonus point if you snag the mandarins from our Thursday or Saturday markets!)
Cranberry and Mandarin Stovetop Simmer
Combine the mandarin, cranberries, and spices in a saucepan and add the water. Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce the heat to medium and leave it to simmer! Stir occasionally to release more scent, and add more water if it is no longer covering the fruit.
I have this pictured in a crockpot, which I tried to use originally, but I found that after 15 minutes it wasn’t heating everything enough to start releasing scent. At that point I transferred everything to the stove and brought it up to boil. I even tried transferring everything back to the crockpot after thoroughly heating it, but that still wasn’t nearly as effective as putting it on the stove.
Also, don’t forget to be a little more sustainable this Turkey Day by:
Text and pictures by Corin Tschoepe
Final image by Corey Wahl
Recipe adapted from One Good Thing by Jillee
A few of our members from Howdy Farm had the wonderful opportunity to go camping at the beautiful Pace Bend Park just outside of Austin for our semester trip, and the elusive banana boats made an appearance (totally worth the long trip)! The next day we took a trip to Austin to learn about the SFC Farmers Market and a few farms in the area. Take a look at the services offered by the places we visited.
SFC Downtown Farmers Market
Boggy Creek Farm
East Austin Succulents
*All the photos from this blog post, with the exception of the last photo, are from our very own Charlie Wong!
Text by: Jennifer Hernandez
Ever drank hot chocolate and thought “Gee this is good, but I wish it was richer, thicker, or just more chocolatier”? Well look no further, because this recipe is essentially melted chocolate that doesn’t harden unless left overnight or chilled, but why would you want to chill the drink of the gods? It serves 4-6 so you know that equals 1 lonely college student.
16 ounces semi-sweet chocolate chips
2 1⁄2 cups whole milk
1⁄2 cup heavy whipping cream
1⁄2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Hold on for a wild ride, because here comes the simplest recipe that is still responsible for over Zero overindulgent deaths each year across America.
Melt the chocolate chips in a skillet on low heat. My grandma used to tell me “Don’t burn the tar out of ‘em.”
Once melted toss in the milk and stir vigorously, as if you were making half an English trifle and half a shepherds pie until it is smooth.
Add whipping cream and vanilla.
Remember: Don’t boil it, you only need to bring it to steaming hot. “Don’t burn the tar out of ‘em.”
Now enjoy the drink worthy of Quetzalcoatl himself.
Text by John Brewer
First and foremost, this is not my recipe. I borrowed it from our best friend, aka the internet. (Find the original here.)
In just a few more days, Halloween will be here. Slowly the change in weather is setting in. What better way to start this season than with a yummy treat. If you love pumpkin, chocolate, and cinnamon, then this recipe is the one for you. I would recommend a tasty hot chocolate to partner with this indulging Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Bread.
3 Cups White Sugar (Brown Sugar Accepted)
1 (15 oz) Can Pumpkin Puree (or real pumpkin!)
1 Cup Vegetable Oil (Can substitute with applesauce)
⅔ Cups of Water
3 ½ Cups of Flour
1 Tbs. Ground Cinnamon (can be modified)
½ Tbs. Ground Nutmeg
2 tsp. Baking Soda
1 ½ tsp. Salt
1 Cup Miniature Semisweet Chocolate Chips
½ Cup Chopped Walnuts (Optional)
1. Preheat oven 350 degrees. Grease and flour three 9x5 inch loaf pans.
2. In a large bowl, combine sugar, pumpkin, oil, water, and eggs. Beat until smooth.
3. Blend in flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, baking soda, and salt.
4. Fold in chocolate chips and nuts. Fill pans ½ to ¾ full.
5. Bake for 1 hour, or until an inserted knife comes out clean. Cool before serving.
We hope you enjoy this fun fall recipe!
Text and photos by Leticia Meza
One of Howdy Farm’s beloved partnerships is with Ronin Cooking, a local dining experience unlike any other. Husband and wife duo, Brian and Amanda Light are devoted to serving the Bryan/College Station community with local, organic food and seasonal flavors.
Currently growing in the Ronin garden this season is a variety of vegetables, grains, and herbs consisting of but not limited to, carrots, asparagus, radishes, garlic, beets, cauliflower, romaine, sugar snap peas, basil, sage, mustard, and much more. Brian and Amanda are passionate about supporting local farms and re-bridging the connection between guests and their food source. Because of their passion, visitors to the farm are able to experience nature and its connection to our dinner plate like never before. Eating a meal composed of the freshest ingredients, beneath the light of the full moon shining through the forest trees, gives guests a newfound appreciation for the harvest as our
Coming up at Ronin is a Yoga + Dinner event on November 6th and 7th at the farm. Yoga Pod of College Station will be guiding guests through a one-hour flow class in the forest, focused on harvesting gratitude. The class will be suitable for all levels of experience. The gate will open at 5:30pm and the
With fall having just arrived, we have a ton of new, fresh produce that Howdy Farm will be selling in the next couple months! And for today’s post, I wanted to give you a preview of a few of the more exotic veggies growing at the farm, as well as how you might use them.
Daikon, a type of radish, is a fall/winter root crop that is popular in East and Southeast Asia. They are white in color and grow deep into the soil. Daikon are great raw in salads, sauteed in rice dishes, roasted, or in a smoothie! Rich in vitamin C and calcium, daikon have benefits for immune system and bone heath, as well as having some anti-inflammatory properties.
Try these recipes:
Radish Greens Smoothie
Ginger Daikon Radish Rice with Fried Egg
Roasted Potato and Carrot Salad with Daikon/Radish Pickle
Korean Daikon Radish Salad
Not associated with the famous Napa Valley vineyards of California, Napa cabbage actually originates near Beijing, China, with nappa meaning the leaves of a vegetable. In fact, it’s called Chinese Cabbage in much of the world, and, like Daikon, often takes its place in Asian dishes, including kimchi. Napa cabbage has yellow-green leaves and thick crispy stems, and is described as softer and sweeter than traditional green cabbage. This means it’s also great raw in salads, or as a wrapper in a creative main dish!
Try these recipes:
Napa Cabbage Rolls with Meat and Veggies
Asian Cabbage And Shiitake Mushroom Stir Fry
Miso Noodle Soup
Sweet and Sour Roasted Napa Cabbage Wedges
A native of the Mediteranean, arugula is popular in Italian and French dishes with its slightly peppery, fresh flavor. It’s high in vitamins A, C, and K, and is thought to have antioxidant properties. And if the health benefits weren’t enough, arugula adds a great kick to salads, as well as pizza, pasta, and soup. I mean, pizza people, I’m practically begging you to give it a try.
Try these recipes:
Caramelized Onion Pizza with Goat Cheese and Arugula
Arugula Salad with Apple and Candied Walnuts
Lemon Arugula Pasta
Arugula Pesto (you can add it to your soup!)
Last but not least, kale has its origins all over Europe, and became popularized as a food source in the UK during World War II. Although you have probably heard of kale as a “superfood” before, you may not know that its high nutrient density, evident from its dark green color, has benefits for almost your entire body. Kale contains 14 different vitamins and minerals, and it great in everything from salads and smoothies, to tacos and veggie chips!
Try these recipes:
Chipotle Marinated Kale and Smokey Mushroom Tacos
Garlic Parmesan Kale Pasta
Twice Baked Potatoes with Kale
Crispy Kale Chips