Preparation: Select a location with 6-8 hours full sun where you want to spend time that has a water source. Add elements for the pleasure and perception of your 5 senses, Sight; the roses and companion plants that attract pollinators. Hearing; wind chimes or a water fall type fountain for the relaxing sound of water Smell; fragrant roses and flowers, and add the beverage of your choice champagne, wine, iced tea, coffee. And we can add thermoception (temperature differences) by carefully choosing the location of a bench or swing in the shade or sun. Sound; wind chimes or a water fountain, Wind chimes, sound; the roses, sight; touch, textured companion plants like Mondo grass; smell, roses. Add your favorite beverage for taste, like champagne and hear the tinkling of the bubbles. Meditate, pray and stimulate the 6th sense plant these three roses according to instructions, add a fountain, decor, like wind chimes, a beautiful bench and companion plants and you’ve got your self a rose garden. Children and grown ups alike love my geese girls that I dress for holidays. The most important ingredient of all is Love. A garden is a gathering place for loved ones.
*Mills Magic Rose Mix is the perfect blend of organic soil amendments that I personally used to buy separately in 40-50 pound bags at the feed store, transport home and mix in a huge wheelbarrow and separate in 5-gallon pails. Now I just use this product exclusively. So if there is a secret to rose success this is it.
The holidays are steeped in traditions.Â Mother said you need to eat black-eyed peas on New Year’s day for good luck all year. Am I superstitious? Maybe, maybe not but what can it hurt to gobble down a few black-eyed peas to guarantee your health and prosperity for the coming year. I just knew I wasnâ€™t crazy about black-eyed peas so I searched for a recipe for ways to eat black-eyed peas. Mother found this absurd that I didnâ€™t like them very well, like it was an unheard of thing in her family, so this aberration must have come from my fatherâ€™s Yankee heritage. At any rate I found a wonderful recipe called Texas Cavier that I have amended and you need to try it so you can have good luck all year. This recipe comes with a warning. Itâ€™s addictive. Now that I make it I am asked to make it for all occasions.
My daughter-in-law, Tanna eats it with a spoon like gazpacho. Itâ€™s amazingly simple, extremely fresh & healthy and just takes some chopping. I also know I donâ€™t pass a New Yearâ€™s day without eating black-eyed peas. I just don’t take a chance on the luck thing and you probably shouldn’t either.
How did the belief that eating black-eyed peas on New Year’s Day start?
Back in the days of Southern gentility, and Northern hostility, black-eyed peas were used strictly for the feeding of cattle in the South. During the Civil War battle of Vicksburg, the town was under siege for over 40 days. Supplies were cut off from the town. The entire town was on the brink of starvation. During this time they ate the humble “cowpeas,” to avoid starvation starting a southern tradition. Nowadays black-eyed peas are eaten every New Year’s Day to bring good luck for the coming year. This tradition can be traced back to the times of the Pharaohs in Egypt where black-eyed peas had been a symbol of luck and fortune. The superstition is that those who eat black-eyed peas, an inexpensive and modest food, show their humility and save themselves from the wrath of the heavens because of the vanity they might have. Black-eyed peas are neither a pea nor a bean. They are lentils.
1 whole red onion finely chopped, or you can use chopped green onion as well
1 red bell pepper, chopped
1 green bell pepper, chopped
1 yellow bell pepper, chopped
3-4 jalapeno peppers, seeded & minced (be careful not to get oil on your skin if sensitive)
4 clove garlic, minced
3 large tomatoes, chopped or you can add 2-3 cans of rotel tomatoes
8oz bottle zesty Italian salad dressing, or light done right or Fat-free Italian
1-2 bunches of cilantro
1 can chopped gr. Chiles
3-4 cans of black-eyed peas with jalapenos
In large bowl, combine all ingredients except cilantro and stir to combine. When ready to serve, mix in the chopped cilantro and serve as a dip with tortilla scoops or toasted baguette slices. Store, covered up to 10 days in the refrigerator. Â Note: I store mine even after I have added cilantro and itâ€™s still wonderful.
Most people still do not really understand just how viral social media is and the tremendous impact is makes. It is also a wonderful tool to connect with like-minded people. One of my favorite friends on twitter who is passionate about his organic garden is my friend Sebastian @YogaArmy. He so nicely introduced me to one of his friends who is also passionate about organic gardening. Her name is June Stoyer @OrganicGuru.
June Stoyer also happens to be the Executive Producer of The Organic Viewâ„¢ Network and the host of The Organic Viewâ„¢ Radio Show. Â She is a Certified Master Composter via the Brooklyn Botanic Garden and also went through the Master Gardener Program at Cornellâ€™s Cooperative Extension. She taught over 900 culinary, nutritional and horticultural programs for over 12 years in the New York metro area and has been an advocate of the organic industry, agriculture, wildlife and everything organic. Thanks to the tremendous impact of social media and technology, The Organic View Radio show reaches listeners not only in the United States but all over the globe. The show has fans all over the world inÂ places such as Belgium, France, China, Ukraine, Egypt, Morocco, Rwanda, South Africa, Australia, Chile, Costa Rica and anywhere you can get an internet hook up.
The show, which has been a tremendous success, is the only show that focuses on the companies, leaders, scientists and activists that are directly impacting not only organic food but the environment and the beings we share it with. The show has featured top CEOâ€™s such as Michael Potter, CEO, Eden Foods, Arran Stephens, CEO, Natureâ€™s Path, the Trump organization, Prince Lorenzo Borghese, agricultural leaders such as Percy Schmeiser, Joaquin Contente, Joel Greeno, John Kinsman, Gunther Hauk to famed authors such as, Jon Soeder, Author of True Tails, Elizabeth Royte, author of Bottlemania and the list goes on and on. Listeners from all over the world email, post, tweet and skype their commentsÂ and questions that main stream media just will not address in this day and age where corporate sponsors dictate the content.
Here is my interview with June:
Q. June, what made you decide to start The Organic Viewâ„¢ Radio Show?
A. â€œI had been lecturing for over a decade and it amazed me how many people really wanted to know about organics. The public was constantly asking for credible resources and information about how things were really made. People also wanted information about the environment, animals and wildlife as well as anything to do with living healthier. There was so much misinformation out there. It was too confusing. People no longer began trusting main stream media and began looking for authentic resources based upon personal referrals.
People would tell me about how sick they were and how they had to make their own food or about experiences with chemical sensitivities to detergent, etc. Â To this day, sadly, most people do not know the difference between natural and organic. The industry needs to be very clear and must reform so that only the organic companies out there who not only talk the talk but walk the walk are actually leading the industry. The regulations must remain very strict and there can never be any compromise when it comes to gmoâ€™s (genetically modified organisms). Organic can never co-exist with gmoâ€™s because they will become contaminated.
People also have a lot to learn when it comes to the environment. Composting, for example, is something that people do not like because they think it smells badly or think it takes too much work. Composting is something that everyone should do not only because it is good for the environment but because it is an excellent way for communities to make money by selling top quality compost. Homeowners can actually save quite a bit of money by composting their organic materials. I actually spent a month in China promoting some of the modern day techniques we have developed over here. It was a beautiful experience but China is not at a point where the environment is paramount, unfortunately. â€œ
I actually created The Organic Viewâ„¢ Radio Show about 3 years ago. I wanted a family oriented program that would actually give some spotlight to the very people who are never given much of any recognition. The information had to be directly from the source and would focus not only on organics, the politics, and the environment, with a special emphasis on the creatures that we share it with.
Q. How did organically grown foods become such a matter of importance to you?
A. After growing up on a farm and moving to the concrete jungle of New York City I found that I really missed the country. I was never a city girl. I really longed for anything green. I started off with a small herb garden on my fire escape and soon began showing some of my neighbors how to grow their own container gardens. No matter how exciting New York City seemed, I simply could not leave the country behind.
In my late teens and 20â€™s I suffered from severe allergies (dogs, cats, pollen, trees, mold, grass, etc.). I also had a number of sensitivities to perfumes, aerosols, fragrances as well as sensitivities different foods. The first time I traveled to Europe, I spent some time in Italy and was amazed that the food was so much better. There were no chemicals and preservatives in the food like there were in the States. It was nice to be able to enjoy foods once again without having a reaction to them. Most of the things that I enjoyed had to be homemade or I would wind up getting sick from them. When I returned home I realized that I needed to make some changes because it was the combination of products and foods that were making me sick.
Q. Was this a difficult transition for you June?
A. It was very difficult to discuss the problems I had and the reactions to different foods back then. People were basically pretty unsympathetic and insensitive. I think that this was because there was very little information available. The internet has helped tremendously to change that. Back then, people had not connected the dots by communicating the way they do today. Today there are forums, websites, and programs like The Organic Viewâ„¢ Radio Show that address these issues.
Q. Tell us about some of your experiences while you were transitioning from city girl back to your organic farm girl roots
Q. June says â€œI remember calling my Dad and asking him to bring some eggs from the farm because the eggs from the supermarket had a pale yellow, sickly-looking colored yolk. Our eggs on our farm had a gorgeous orange color. I knew how they were supposed to look as opposed to what I was seeing in the stores.
Once I made a complete transition and eliminated all of the air fresheners, detergents, soaps, cleansers, personal products and foods, I found that I didnâ€™t have to go to the allergist for shots to relieve symptoms that had plagued me for most of my adulthood.â€
Q. What are some other things you remember about this transition to organic girl?
A. In my 20â€™s I was not much of a party girl. I loved to garden. My friends used to say â€œJune, you have more in common with our grandmother than with usâ€¦.and itâ€™s true! I was more interested in how many varieties of tomatoes I could grow than going out with friends to the Hamptons. I had a better time discussing growing methods, wine making, honeybees, pollinators, herbology, composting and really anything to do with nature.â€
Q. What are your favorite plants to grow?
A. Herbs. You can season your food with them, they make the house smell great and they are so easy to grow. It is an easy way to get kids to want to learn how to cook.
Q. What are your favorite herbs to grow?
A. Any of the perennials: sage, thyme, rosemary, oregano, mint, etc.
Q. If you could grow 5 plants in your vegetable garden what would they be?
A. tomatoes, string beans, cucumbers, kale, eggplant
June Stoyer’s Favorite Organic Crunchy Seasoned Potatoes
June’s seasoned potatoes recipe
These are really great to make with kids or to serve as a healthy snack while enjoying your favorite baseball team play ball! They are high in potassium, vegan and very good for you!
1 organic Russet Potato
1 organic Yam
1 organic plantain
2 tablespoons of organic extra virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon of dried organic oregano
1 teaspoon of organic thyme
1 teaspoon organic rosemary
organic sea salt and organic black pepper to taste
On a cutting board
1. Cut 1 organic Russet potato, 1 plantain and 1 yam into long thin strips
2. Place into a bowl and douse with organic extra virgin olive oil, sea salt and freshly crushed black pepper
3. Coat the strips by tossing with your hands or two spoons
4. Spread strips on a baking sheet and bake at 375 degrees for 25 min 5. Serve hot with organic ketchup and enjoy!
June wanted me to share with you the one hour show when I was a guest on her show talking about roses. Here’s a link to the podcast on growing, pruning and the care of roses. You can listen to her show daily at 4:00 PM eastern time daily.