It’s Love Your Pet Day!

Aloha FarmLovers!

Written by SINEAD BYRNE, for Edible Hawaiian Islands

Along a stretch of neglected pasture land bordering the highway, the castor bean plant fans out under the sun, nurturing poisonous clusters of small, spikey seed pods. Nearby, the Sacramento bur, not to be outdone by the castor bean, primes its own prickly, irksome burs for seed dispersion. Nasty as these two plants may be, neither can trump the ambition of the haole koa, a prolific roadside shrub distinguished by its flat, brown seed pods. Haole koa can thrive in the most depleted of soils, often reaching heights of 15-20 feet.

This scene is a nightmare to native plant enthusiasts, farmers, and highway maintenance crews alike. Whether bemoaned as an invasive species, a tenacious weed, or an obstruction to sight-lines, it’s easy to agree that these plants are a nuisance. There is someone, however, who sees things in a different light — someone who sees an all-you-can-eat feast where the rest of us just see problems. Enter our humble, hungry hero: the goat. continue reading…

When & Where to find us this week:

Hale‘iwa/Thurs/2-6. Pearlridge/Sat/8-Noon. Kaka‘ako/Sat/8-Noon. KailuaTown/ Sun/8:30-Noon. Learn more

At The Markets:

EAT FRESH!

Follow our FarmLovers Pinterest pages, for these and many more recipes using fresh, local ingredients! Click each photo to be directed to recipes.

lemony kale & white bean detox salad with charred tempeh

Easy Roasted Tomato Soup

CHOCOLATE HAZELNUT PRALINE BARS

SEE YOU ON THE MARKET AISLES!

Love and Food

Aloha FarmLovers!

Happy Valentine’s Day! We celebrate LOVE every day, but sure… let’s make a day of it! If you are like me, those moments shared with loved ones often involve food! When I think of being 12 and playing cards during a family trip to the beach, I can still taste the crab legs that we caught earlier that day. When I think of a trip to NYC to share the wonders of the city with my then 6YO son, I can still hear his giggles as the giant hot fudge sundae approaches. When I think of holidays with friends, I can see the beautiful and colorful salad made with fresh, local ingredients brought to a potluck. Good food, good friends and love… yes! Let’s celebrate! And hey kids… there’s plenty of locally grown, Bean-to-Bar chocolate on island if you need a little sweetness on the day. Check out Madre Chocolate and Manoa Chocolate for a treat you won’t soon forget!

When & Where to find us this week:

Hale‘iwa/Thurs/2-6. Pearlridge/Sat/8-Noon. Kaka‘ako/Sat/8-Noon. KailuaTown/ Sun/8:30-Noon. Learn more

At The Markets:

EAT FRESH!

Follow our FarmLovers Pinterest pages, for these and many more recipes using fresh, local ingredients! Click each photo to be directed to recipes.

crispy avocado tacos + roasted radishes + sriracha smashed beans

Mexican Grilled Chicken Cobb Salad

CHOCOLATE CHAI POT DE CREME

SEE YOU ON THE MARKET AISLES!

Can wildflowers reduce pesticide use?

Aloha FarmLovers!

Wildflowers Are Definitely the Prettiest Way to Reduce Pesticide Use

Sometimes, great solutions happen to also be beautiful.

Texan Girl 05 on Flickr

Planting wildflowers around the outside of cropland has almost become standard good practice among farmers trying to reduce their pesticide use. The theory: wildflowers attract beneficial insects, like ladybugs and some wasps, which prey on aphids and other pests. With more beneficial insects, pesticide use can go down. Sounds good, right? But what if we have one of the basic principals of this technique all wrong? A trial from the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology tested a new planting strategy that, actually, seems pretty obvious.

Here’s the problem: Lining the perimeter of a farm with wildflowers asks that the beneficial insects leave this habitat and to trek into the fields to chow down on their prey. But most of the good guys aren’t particularly mobile. It’s asking a lot of these creatures, and even means that they sometimes don’t make it to the center sections of a field.

The trial, conducted on 15 farms in England over the past five years, had farmers plant six-meter-wide stripes of wildflowers right in the middle of their fields, spaced 100 meters apart. These stripes made it much easier for the beneficial insects to travel throughout the crops (and GPS-guided equipment helped farmers work around the stripes. There’s a bonus, too: This new approach looks quite lovely; even design blogs approve.

Initial tests seem to indicate that the beneficial insects are now able to hit the entire farm, but there are added complications. This strategy isn’t a total solution; even environmentally conscience farms need to use some pesticides. And some studies have indicated that pesticides used on the farm, or even nearby farms, can drift onto patches of wildflowers sowed for their insect habitats, which can result in plant and insect death—not a good thing. More research into these fields will show if greater beneficial insect coverage outweighs the potential damage of insecticides.

When & Where to find us this week:

Hale‘iwa/Thurs/2-6. Pearlridge/Sat/8-Noon. Kaka‘ako/Sat/8-Noon. KailuaTown/ Sun/8:30-Noon. Learn more

At The Markets:

EAT FRESH!

Follow our FarmLovers Pinterest pages, for these and many more recipes using fresh, local ingredients! Click each photo to be directed to recipes.

Avocado Kale Caesar Salad + Sweet Potato Fries

Roasted Cauliflower and Chickpea Salad

A Healthy Hair Smoothie with Blueberry + Kale

SEE YOU ON THE MARKET AISLES!