Category Archives: visitors

This Thursday

This could be you!

volunteer

We had a nice workday last week–where were you? It’s starting to feel like spring at GT Farm…Come on over this Thursday to get dirty–and earn some leeks. I think I might have more than 1.5 shovels, too…

Where: 28th street and MLK, Oakland, CA 94609
When: Thursday, February 28th, 3-5pm
What: Bring gloves and water

Darlings, Open Day

So I’m a dumb-ass. Forgot that we are going to Florida, flying on the 14th, for Bill’s dad’s 86th birthday! See you on February 21. Sorry sorry sorry.

Big news: I’m pretty much finished writing my new memoir, Gone Feral. More on that in later posts.

This means the following:
1. more blog posts, more regularly
2. more gardening, more regularly
3. an open day at GT Farm! specifically, Thursdays, 3-5pm

Two visitors from afar came by today, and while we were pulling weeds in the parking strip, chatting about life and farming, I had an idea: maybe other people would think that is fun too. So, starting on Valentine’s Day, Thursday, Feb 14, I’m going to open up the farm for work days. If you live in the area–Ben!–come on over. I will put you to work.

Bring:
1. water to drink
2. gloves

A warning: the garden really is trashed. I’m getting it back into shape, but it’s taking awhile. Also, animal lovers: I have no animals, except bees. Dial back the expectations, and you’ll have fun.

See you on V-D (which, btw, I hate as a holiday. Why do lovers need a special day?)–and every Thursday, 3-5pm.

So much love

Bringing a baby into the world makes you realize how important your community is. For company on those long days of breastfeeding, for homemade meals when you feel like boiling water for tea is nearly impossible, for gifts that remind you that this is a good world.

We’ve had several visitors every day since our daughter, Francis Cabell Amanita Jacobs, was born, including Moses from Brothers Market–his wife made this amazing Yemeni bread; Francis the metal collector; dear friends bearing meals of soup and brisket, shepherds pie, beer, arepas. Thanks guys!!

One of my favorite gifts came from Sadie and Emma, two talented potters.They made these drinking cups–one for Francis, Billy, Novella, and Friend. So cute.

Cheers to hand-made pottery and good friends. And Happy Spring!!

Thanks Sis

There’s always something new to learn. Like, you can eat carrot greens (in moderation).

Here they are, frying with some bacon. I enjoyed them with some coconut oil/goat milk/whole wheat flour waffles that my sister, Riana, left before she left, going back to France. I won’t lie, the day she left, I cried like a baby. Partially because I have a baby. My sister was a whirlwind during the week she was here, helping me with baby Francis. She reorganized the baby clothes, figured out what was making all those cupboard moths in my kitchen (a bag of Hoody’s peanuts), made me breakfast, and took care of the baby ducklings (photos coming soon).

Then there was more: When her friend Dean arrived, they chainsawed (thank you Oakland Tool Lending library) down that horrible feral plum tree, found me a new couch and kitchen table, scrounged and fixed four dining room chairs, cleaned my nasty turquoise kitchen chairs, and much much more. It was humbling and contagious. I even rearranged my kitchen cupboards. I feel like a new woman.

She also taught me some new tricks, like using duck eggs to make pound cake, trim baby fingernails, and–eating carrot greens. They taste like slightly bitter carrots. She sautees hers with maple syrup. The flavor will always remind me of my sister and her kindness and love. I’ll never forget it.

Calling Urban Farmers

As much as I hate driving, sometimes it gives me a good idea. The other day, on the hour drive up to Dixon to buy hay and a manger, I realized that I should invite other urban farmers to my pop-up farmstand so they can sell their produce. It’ll be like an urban farmers market!

This is happening Oct 27th (next Wednesday) from 4pm-7pm; and again on November 17th 4pm-7pm; at 665 28th street at MLK.

If you live in the East Bay and are an urban grower/farmer, consider this a call to contact me (novellacarpenter at gmail), to sign up to sell. In your email, tell me what you’d like to sell, where you live, and we’ll figure it out. Obviously you have to have grown it yourself! Added value is neat, but let’s start with veg, fruits, eggs first and go from there. I’ve noticed that things like eggs, honey, and potatoes are huge sellers! I’ll have some tables but if you have a table, by all means, bring it. I’ll be selling dino kale, figs, salad mix, and a few plant starts. You’ll be selling what?

Also, note that tomorrow (Wednesday, Oct 20) I’ll be selling stuff at the Pop Up General Store at Martin Luther King Jr Way and 49th Street, 5-7pm. See you there!

Party on the 28th

Just when things were getting good around here, I “have” to go on vacation. Billy and I are pulling up stakes in early August and taking a crazy cross-country road trip. Of course this causes much consternation on the farm, so I have to find a place to board the goats, set up the ducks, and chickens. The bees, well, they don’t care if I’m around or not.

The garden is another thing to worry about. Last time I left for that long, many plants died. So I’ve decided to just harvest everything, pull up all the rows and beds and plant a cover crop just before I go. So there’s going to be a big mid-summer harvest party at my place July 28, 5-8pm. I figure I should make it a fundraiser for my trip, too. We’ll be going to Detroit to check out the urban farm scene (dream of mine) but as you know, biodiesel is expensive. Accordingly, I’ll be selling some items to pay for “gas” money: t-shirts, preserved lemons, greens, radishes, pickles, and books. My new friend Becky of Local 123 coffee shop will be on hand making salads using produce from the garden, iced tisanes (mint/verbena/elderflower) and we might even serve some hot stuff out of the cob oven. Please feel free to stop by:

July 28, 5pm-8pm

665 28th street, oaklandia (ride bikes or park on MLK, please)

If you can’t wait–I’ll be at Samin’s Pop-up General store this Wednesday, July 21 at 47th and MLK.

And finally, I’ll be at the North Berkeley Library (1170 Alameda at Hopkins)  reading and discussing Farm City on July 22 at 6:30. Come on by!