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  Liberty in a Garden

Harvest links  


This past Saturday, a very energetic crew of members harvested the last of the beets for the season. A quick estimate puts the day’s harvest at about 450-500 pounds—all done in about 30 minutes—impressive! These last of the season beets are an heirloom variety called Detroit Dark Red. Unlike the Early Wonder Tall Top variety we sent earlier this season, these are much better suited for fall. Early Wonders are uniform in size, have beautiful tops and are the height of fresh eating, but the Detroit Dark Red is durable and a very long- keeper. (They are also way more erratic in size! ) Nonetheless, for a beet lover, they are fabulous! Try roasting and adding to a fall salad with caramelized pecans and feta. Wowie, wow, wow! It turns out that Detroit Dark Red was first introduced in 1892 and quickly became an American standard. It also featured prominently in the numerous Victory Gardens that became part of the war effort in WWI. This year, 2017, marks the 100th anniversary of the United States’ entry into WWI and the establishment of the Victory Garden or Liberty Garden effort to provide more food for the good folks on the home front. In 1918, Minneapolis alone had over 10,000 Victory Gardens that produced more than half a million pounds of produce!! Way to go urban farming! As the production gardening boomed, the University of Minnesota, The United States Department of Agriculture, the National War Garden Commission and many other local experts provided the needed expertise to grow bountiful gardens.

Additionally, there was a great deal of education around preserving food, particularly the new “cold-pack” canning technique and folks were encouraged to put up as much food as possible. It is interesting to note, that while many today dismiss the local food movement and it’s different manifestations such as CSA’s, farmers markets, food coops and the like as wild-eyed idealists and inconsequential, the Victory Gardens of the past demonstrate that the productive capacity of small-scale agriculture is really untapped. Moreover, as the “feed the world” mantra in the global industrial ag system brings us less and less diversity in our diets, it is fun to think of our lovely Detroit Dark Red beet as a little bit of tasty freedom and history, fresh from the Spring Hill Liberty Garden.


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Spring Hill Events - 2017
Saturday, November 4th - Harvest Dinner

To be a sustainable farm that provides for the land, the farmers, and a community committed to connecting to their source of food and eachother.

• share in the work to create a farm that is economically, environmentally, and socially sustainable;
• share the risk and share the bounty;
• make decisions together;
• ensure that the size of the farm holds in balance considerations of land, community, and farm viability;
• work together to nurture a friendly and creative community.