Food Tank: Interview with the Dervaes Family

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Original article at FoodTank.com Jules Dervaes is an urban farmer based in Pasadena, California. Dervaes and his three adult children—Justin, Anais, and Jordanne—operate an Urban Homesteading project on their property. The Dervaes family grows approximately 7,000 pounds of organic produce annually, powers their home with alternative energy, fuels their car with homemade biodiesel,

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Growing Natives

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These past five years, Southern California has been gripped by a severe drought.  This is a semi-arid region, which on a good year, averages 12-16 inches.   In In three of the five years, we’ve hoovered around 4 inches.  Last year we received about 6 inches and a bit over 6

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Blackberry Jam

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We are blessed to have an abundance of blackberries this year.    I confess, I am hoarding them (sorry, farmbox subscribers!) to make preserves. I love making preserves and a few years back I kicked the box habit  — using any store bought (boxed) pectin for my jam making.   Yes,

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Avocado Toast

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Even homesteaders have to admit, there are some days they are  too durn busy to cook.   We start the day with good intentions but then we blow past lunch and, before you know it hunger strikes – it’s dinner time and your stomach is  fit to be tied. Toast has

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DIY Pallet Planter Fence

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Being thrifty homesteaders, we are always on the look out for clever and creative ways to re-use things.   A friend of ours had a bunch of pallets and wondered if we wanted them.  Heck, yeah!  Who can turn down free wood?  Pallets ( seeds, plants, baby chicks and canning jars)

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Suckers!

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Tomato plants are in ground and getting bigger and bushier by the day.   Flowers have appeared and we are sooooo anticipating the first tomato of the season!  Mmmmm, mouth is watering just thinking about it.  Many garden sources say one should pinch (prune) tomatoes suckers (the growth between main stems

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Square Foot Gardener Founder Passes Away

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 “80 percent of a garden was wasted space — “space that doesn’t need to be fertilized, watered or improved, but does need to be weeded.” Mel Bartholomew, one of the pioneers of urban agriculture, passed away this week.   Bartholomew encouraged gardeners to abandon the tradition of row gardening and grow

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La familia que produce miles de kilos de comida en el patio de su casa (BBC Mundo)

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Beatriz Díez BBC Mundo, Los Ángeles / May 6, 2016 See original article Lo que empezó como una afición se convirtió en un estilo y filosofía de vida: una “revolución casera”, como la presentan sus creadores, la familia Dervaes. Jules Dervaes vive con sus hijos Anais, Justin y Jordanne en

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Homestead Crafts: Canning Lid Flower

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For those of us who like to “Put Up” one can never have too many canning jars; however,  there comes a tipping point when you MUST deal with too many used lids and rims.  Well, at least for me.  LOL I am always searching for creative crafts to use up

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Chicken Butt!

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Guess what?   Far from being a silly rhyme-arific, for farming folks, there’s something to be had for clean chicken butts!  A fluffy and clean backside is a sign of a healthy and happy hen. I recall a time when we were teaching one of our Raising Chickens class one of

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