State of the Farm
March is here and we've had a great start to the 2012 season by getting our tomatoes and peppers started and lots of early spring crops in the ground. Though obviously California needs a whole lot more rain, if we were to get just a little bit more this month the soil will have a great moisture level for preparing our planting beds. Then we can get a head start on our summer planting, as we've been anticipating since it's been such a dry year. We are planning our first planting day for peppers and tomatoes to be March 31st, which will also be our large Cesar Chavez Day celebration. The end of March is generally the earliest you want to transplant tomatoes and peppers around here, even though nurseries might be stocking these plants already. Don't be fooled! Wait for the temperature to rise a bit before getting these in the ground. We'll be starting some squash and cucumbers in the greenhouse shortly and making an attempt at direct seeding in the field, just in case we're hit with a week of warm weather and we can get a head start on these popular summer veggies.
Upcoming Workshops and Events
Veggielution has quite the fun packed calendar this month:
Botany, Plant Families, and Crop Planning for Your Garden
-Saturday Mar.3rd-1:30p-3:00p- $10
Learn the ropes from Veggielution’s very own farmers. We will go over the basic botany of commonly used crop families, crop planning, and crop planning. You will be on your way to being a farming expert
Getting to Know Your Insects: Integrated Pest Management Saturday Mar.10th -1:30p-3:00p- $10
Joined by insect researcher Diego Nieto, we will get a run-down of all the major insect families and what role they play in a farming system. Pests and Predators are both part of a healthy farm. You will also learn how to encourage insects to make your garden their home by creative “insectary hedgerows” of flowering and native plants.
Food Justice and Sustainable Agriculture
-Saturday Mar.17th-1:30p-3:00p- $10
Explore food system issues, food justice, the history of agriculture, and the methods and necessity of sustainable agriculture.
Cesar Chavez Day
-Saturday Mar.31st- 9:00a-2:30p-FREE
Celebrate Cesar Chavez Day this year by donating your time to growing real food in your community. Veggielution is hosting a day of powerful events to commemorate the struggle and the sacrifice for the rights of farm workers in the U.S.
Learn more about our upcoming events
Cesar Chavez Day Event
We will be holding our first ever Cesar Chavez Day Celebration this year on Saturday, March 31st from 9am-2:30pm. Cesar Chavez was an incredible leader who actually grew up right in our neighborhood, having worked in the fields and orchards of the East Side. He fought extremely hard to improve conditions for farmworkers and bring more social justice to the agricultural industry, a cause that is very important to Veggielution. Considering that our work is so rooted in Cesar's legacy, we thought it would be only fitting to begin honoring Cesar Chavez day each year with a large community event. This year is already shaping up to be a great event, with a full schedule of activities including a morning Azteca/Mexica blessing and dance ceremony, our regular Saturday workday, building the foundation of our Bottle Brick Bench, a large potluck lunch that will include hand-made tortillas from the blue maiz criollo that we grew here at the farm last year, and an afternoon panel discussion where we will discuss farmworkers rights and what a sustainable food system looks like. There will also be a full day of children's activities, and thats not all ... our friends from the California Draft Horse and Mule Association will be bringing their team of horses out along with a plow to work our fields. Please join us for what will be a beautiful and memorable community event
The Benefits of Memberships
A Warm Welcome to Little Chef's Counter
We are announcing a new Community Partner to our membership program. Little Chef's Counter, located at the San Pedro Square Market, is now offering a 10% discount to Veggieltuion Members. Their innovative gourmet recipes will make your tastebuds do summersaults. They have an ever changing menu, with fresh, local, and creative options. Treat yourself to some delicious delicacies at Little Chef's Counter. Yet another awesome community discount, just another perk of being a Veggielution member.
March Member Giveaway
Each month Veggielution will offer members a special gift from the farm as a thank you for their support.
March Giveaway: FREE Compost
This month all members can pick up free compost to top dress their gardens. All members, remember to bring your membership card and show it to a staff person to get your compost! Please show up during one of our designated workdays to pick up your goodies.
Become a member
Avant Garden Food and Art Fundraiser
Friday, April 13th 7:00pm-10:00pm
Ignite your senses for a night of visualizing food and feasting upon art...
Devour a variety of farm fresh treats prepared by talented local chefs, and enjoy a silent art auction featuring farm-inspired art produced by visionary local artists. Avant Garden harnesses San Jose’s creative talent to support Veggielution’s growing Community Farm. We are pushing the boundaries of food justice by redefining our relationship with our land, our food, and each other.
Come experience a new way to think about food in our community, through the taste of our Spring harvest, and captivating visual artistry!
Buy your tickets online and save $2 and get 1 free food ticket!
Extended Deadline for Avant Garden-
Do you fancy yourself an artist? Do you want to give back through your own medium? Veggielution will be hosting our 2nd annual art and food fundraiser, Avant Garden. Friday, April 13th from 7-10pm we will be having a silent auction with tons amazing art. If you are interested in submitting art for this event. We are extending our deadline for artists commitments to March 14th! check out our Call for artists.
Call for Artists
Stories from the Ground:
Fun-Raising with Julia
Hi Veggielutionaries, it’s Julia here, the farm’s Development Manager. I have been hard at work creating programs and events that will build a sustainable income for the farm and all it’s community programs!
We all wear a lot of hats here at Veggielution, and I’ve acquired quite a collection, as have the other staff members at the farm. Alongside the membership program, workshops, and organizing our fundraisers, I also handle restaurant sales and distribution, our bookkeeping, website and database management, and I write this here newsletter each month!
My current focus right now is organizing Avant Garden, our delectable food and art fundraiser. Getting to work with people in the community to create a powerful event together, has been a wonderful and fun growing experience. I can’t wait to see how all the pieces come together to have a blow out food and art party for a good cause!
Veggielution has been my passion and fortunately employer for the past year.I feel grateful to be employed with an organization I believe in, and I love knowing that my work goes towards building up my community. Not to mention working for Veggielution is a blast! Now, I just need all of you on board to help sustain our programs. Please consider joining our membership program, participating in a workshop, and going to our fundraising events.I hope to see you all out at the farm!
A Very Veggie Birthday
Edith Nyako, ans SJSU alum, is celebrating her 3rd birthday in a row by volunteering at Veggielution. Not only does she commit her special day to volunteering, she bring her whole crew with her.
From the mouth of the birthday girl, Edith, "I grew up being an active member in my community and being taught to love and take care of my environment & community. I volunteer every year with my family and friends because I am a strong believer in the concept, "it takes a village." In that if I want to see a strong and healthy community, which is what I believe Veggielution strives for as well, then it needs to start with me. I love to volunteer because it's empowering to serve the community and know that I'm making a difference. Now, I do this especially on my birthday because I know that's the day my family and friends who also care about the community can't have any excuses....since that's the birthday girl's wish :)!"
Veggielution wishes you a very happy birthday Edith, thank you for bringing your friends and family out to serve our community!
Every 2nd Saturday of the Month
From 11:00a-12:15p, followed by a potluck lunch.
Saturday, March 10th 2012
This coming Family Day we are going to check out Interesting Insects
Veggielution's March Family Day will include:
*Going on a bug search, for an up close look at these fascinating
*Creating our own wacky insects out of veggies
*Exploring the difference between beneficial insects and pests.
* We will also learn how to keep pesky pests out and bring beneficials
in, using environmentally friendly methods!
So bring the whole family out to the farm, and bug out with with us!
Love and peas,
For more information visit our Family Day page.
We hope to see you at the farm!
Can You Dig It? It's Dig Crew Application Season
Here at Veggielution, our mission is to empower YOUTH and adults from diverse backgrounds to create a sustainable food system in San Jose. We strongly believe in the power of youth and the importance of bringing folks together to work towards change. Our Dig Crew programs work with local high school students to create a positive community that centers around shared work, food, and land.
We are happy to announce that we are currently accepting applications for our paid summer Dig Crew program. We will be bringing together a group of 24 students to work, cook, learn, and participate in workshops ranging from sustainable agriculture and nutrition to communication and social justice.
Visit the Dig Crew page for more information. Applications are due March 12th.