18 December 2007

Introduction and welcome

Food. So it begins. Food, wine, and the politics that affect these things. The first fava bean that pushes through the ground in a Minnesota spring, and the community of a dining room table. What is the haunting smell in that Rockpile zinfandel, and what's the best fat to use in a blueberry pie crust? Is it practical to raise poultry in an urban setting, and how do you make a wood burning oven? What are the significant changes occurring in food production in the United States and around the world? What's happening to our genetic resources and who controls them? Who will be farming in fifty years?
I like to think about food and culture and politics and I like to sit around the table with my family and friends and talk and eat and drink and share. Welcome to my table.


  1. Patrick: When does the first fava bean push through the ground in Northfield?

    I'm playing with what I can grow in the fall, winter, and spring garden here in Missouri.

    I have some Afghani Garbonzo Beans that seem to germinate well in cool soil and are even more frost resistant than peas.


  2. Favas are usually cold resistant down to 10 or 15 degrees. I plant them as early as I can in the spring; there's usually snow on the ground still. Some years I have the foresight to prepare a bed in the fall, making it easy to plant in March or so. If I was in Missouri I'd try fall planting a few varieties and see if any of them germinate in the spring. That way you could select for cold hardiness and eventually have a variety that we could fall plant up here!

  3. I got myself some fava seeds from Johnny's. I've been doing a lot of experimenting with fall/winter/spring gardening after reading Eliot Coleman. I don't think he mentions favas though. My strategy is just to plant stuff at different times and see what happens.