Finally… it’s Spring! I’m writing this on the Vernal Equinox, the time when the sun crosses the plane of the earth’s equator, making night and day of approximately equal length all over the earth. Each day since the Winter Solstice I’ve watched the evening sunset and minute by minute the days have grown longer. (And sometimes warmer… although in March it seemed winter was never leaving us!)To celebrate the season and Earth Day on April 22 (this year a “March for Science” is planned in DC) we always focus on food and farming issues, particularly local ones and the role of women in them.
I hope you will find some inspiration to either begin a first garden or expand an existing one… or support your local farmers by buying at local markets or a local CSA (Community Supported Agriculture).
One of the important organizations we love to support each year is ASAP (Appalachian Sustainable Agriculture Project) and their annual Farm Tour in June. Check out the profile of the “Dairy Queens” of Cane Creek Creamery… a multi-generational farm operation led by three sisters. And go visit them on the Tour this year!
Another ASAP farm is East Fork Farm in Madison County. Dr. Elizabeth Pavka tells us about how this family began and sustains a vibrant farming business to raise both produce and animals and encourage a next generation of growers.
You’ll read about Catherine Classen and how she made her farm dream come true; and Cameron Kempson who considers gardening and farming a vital means of “Soul Care.”
In addition to the Farm Tour, you’ll find many of these farmers at local markets, even in the winter. A new market we profile is in the River Arts District and you’ll read about that in this issue.
Another important effort in the region is the Asheville Food Policy Council headed by Kiera Bulan. Their focus is on supporting food securtiy through initiatives and education in Buncombe County.
And what about Bees! You’ll read about several local women who are helping to educate and inspire us to nurture this all-important pollinator… and you’ll learn how you can get involved in Bee City USA.
And there’s that all-important next generation; Franny’s Farm Camp brings the kids to the farm to do a lot more than just play in the dirt!
This issue isn’t only about farming; one of the reasons for our interest is Food, Glorious Food! Sandy McCall offers several recipes to “remake” your favorite treats with healthier ingredients. Ally’s Bar has created an energy bar based on delicious sweet potatoes! There’s so much to inspire and inform this month.
Health, business, personal finances, home, music, beauty and style… it’s all here. We love to hear from readers about what you particularly loved (or didn’t) and what more you’d like to read!