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If Installing a Big Garden Is Too Much, Start With a Patch of Herbs

If Installing a Big Garden Is Too Much, Start With a Patch of Herbs

July 21, 2020

One of the first things to be finished in our garden will be our herb and rose garden. Created from the existing rock garden beds surrounding our patio, it will have sage, thyme, rosemary, summer savory, oregano — to name just a few herbs — as well as five large rose bushes.  The beautiful pink and yellow lilies will remain. We got a good start on it this past weekend, unperturbed by the requirement to dig up some old shrubs and their roots.

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Polenta

Polenta

July 14, 2020

Polenta is a very finely milled powder of Flint corn which is harder and grittier than Dent corn. Ubiquitous with American Southern cooking it originates in South and Central America and has become popular all over the globe particularly in Italian cuisine, much like the tomato. Corn, which comes in more varieties than one can count, can be used for many different purposes and applications.

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Ancient Grains

Ancient Grains

July 07, 2020

For many of us, our relationship to food is a never ending journey. Sometimes to move forward one finds themselves looking back. For bread and specifically the grains used to make it I find that the best results are indeed found in reflection. It is sometimes true that modern ingenuity has value for us, but that is usually only when paired with ancient wisdom. For grains, that wisdom is in the ancient varieties that have been grown for thousands of years.    

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Manifesting a Vision Means Clearing What Doesn’t Serve

Manifesting a Vision Means Clearing What Doesn’t Serve

June 24, 2020

The first step for us in creating this new garden is born of necessity: In a word, that step is clearing. That means trimming, cutting, pruning, mowing, and sawing all the overgrown limbs and weeds.  Thanks to at least a half dozen trips to our local hardware store, we have been delighted to find affordable battery- and muscle-powered tools. The hand tools, including a wrought iron broad fork and other copper-forged tools, are humbling. Their use requires a level of efficiency I am learning rapidly.

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A New Place to Further Our Commitment to Organic Gardening

A New Place to Further Our Commitment to Organic Gardening

June 15, 2020

During this time of relative uncertainty, we have decided to renew our commitment to gardening. Dr. Cowan’s Garden was originally a place, located in Napa Valley on a plot of land generously donated by a friend. It embodied our ideals and was a sanctuary for growth and learning.

The garden was our muse for new product offerings and for improving existing ones. The garden kept our ambitions grounded to certain fundamentals, as the practice of gardening can be challenging.

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How Oxalates in Plants Prove It’s All About the Dose

How Oxalates in Plants Prove It’s All About the Dose

June 02, 2020

In old English, “Physic” connotes “healing” or perhaps “medicine.”  An ancient principle is that the dose of any substance will determine whether it is a poison or a medicine for the human being.  It is the fundamental principle of homeopathy, a system of medicine that starts with poison and turns it into medicine by changing the dose and the form.  This principle is also key for many people in coming to a healing diet for themselves. 

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Turn off the news and bake some bread! Part 2

Turn off the news and bake some bread! Part 2

April 28, 2020

Now that you know how to create your own sourdough starter, it’s time to make your first loaf of bread. Make sure your starter has been “fed” consistently for at least a few days beforehand. You will also need some sort of baking vessel, such as a combo cooker or a Dutch oven; a large bowl; bench knife or dough scraper; and a razor for scoring. Once you are ready to begin, make a rough bake plan, either written down or just in your head.

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Getting Started With Sourdough Bread Part 1

Getting Started With Sourdough Bread Part 1

April 21, 2020

During this Season of Quarantine, people are discovering and devouring bread baking Is it because carbs are comforting? Or because baking takes time and presence and is, therefore, a welcome distraction from the news? Whatever the reason, the trend is clear: Flour and yeast sales have risen 647 percent, according to the Business Insider; sourdough Facebook groups and Instagram photos proliferate

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You Help Us Support Small Organic Growers

You Help Us Support Small Organic Growers

April 13, 2020

From the beginning of Dr. Cowan's Garden four years ago, we wanted to establish close relationships with organic and Biodynamic farms. Additionally, we have had a vision of sustainable farming that could be realized only by thinking “local” and “small.”

To that end, as we shared in March, we helped Redrange Farm in Pennsylvania achieve Demeter certification. 

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Turn Off the News and Build a Garden

Turn Off the News and Build a Garden

April 07, 2020

One of the favorite things I have seen in the past week or so was a short video made by Willie Nelson and his sons in which they introduced a song called “Turn Off the News and Build a Garden.”  That is sound advice, which I actually took to heart about 40 years ago.

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Let’s All Imagine Together the World We Want to Create

Let’s All Imagine Together the World We Want to Create

March 31, 2020

These are challenging times for all of us.  While everyone has deeply held thoughts and feelings that are needing to be expressed, I want to send out two short messages.  First, I would like to ask everyone to join me in imagining the type of world we wish to emerge out of this crisis.  Do we want to create a world of isolation and separation, where neighbor is pitted against neighbor, or do we want a world of connectedness and compassion?

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Thanks to You, One of Our Small Growers Has Converted to Biodynamics

Thanks to You, One of Our Small Growers Has Converted to Biodynamics

March 24, 2020

In this time of stress and confusion, I wanted to share a heartwarming story that was made possible by you, our customers.  As I have said, one of our core missions is to help small farms grow, prosper and, if possible, convert to biodynamics.  We just received word this week that Red Range Farm in Pennsylvania has received its official Demeter certification, meaning, it is now a recognized biodynamic farm.

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