We have everything you’ll need for your new Flock of Chickens!

Our new chicks arrive every Saturday morning!


Gifts of Spring! by Kimberly Childers •

Save an additional 5% on all dog, cat & caged bird food & supplies with the WFC Rewards Card!

Our fl owers are in too! We have all kinds of bulbs and seeds to fulfi ll your garden needs!

Vaccination clinics every Sunday from 9:30am to 11:30 am Farm Center Western

21 West 7th Street • Santa Rosa • 707-545-0721 “Since 1967 we’ve been the favorite place to shop

for your pets & farm animals!” Mon-Sat 8am-5:30pm • Sun 9:30am-4pm

fence tops. Electric blue Stellar jays, tiny finches, brown spar- rows and mourning doves peck at nour- ishing seed scattered on narrow garden paths. Thorny wild rose brambles climb through trees, high in cloudless ocean-soft sky Red Wing and Coopers hawks seem to float, wide wings riding warm thermals. It’s SPRING at last and time to start planting almost ev- erything. Plant cool weather crops like sweet crunchy Sugar Ann edible pod peas, frilly Heirloom Lolla Rossa lettuce, Bight Lights Swiss chard with beautiful colored ribs, and spinach, native to central and western Asia. Look for slow bolting Harmony spinach and dark green, upright Kook- abura spinach, seeds or nurs- ery starts. Plant parsley, flat leaf or curled, white or purple flowering garlic chives and set out shallow saucers of beer so slugs will ’sadly’ drink to their demise.


ongbirds are singing in bright sunny days of April! Grey squirrels scramble and jaunt along

be planted

gardens and raised beds. Pun- gent scented marigolds are known for their ‘bad bug’ re- pellant qualities and their tan- gerine orange, cinnamon red or yellow petals are a substitute for saffron in cooking.

Flowers of all kinds should throughout


borage with their cucumber flavored leaves and star blue flowers traced back to Roman times. There are books about


flower and herb lore, mean- ings, antique vegetables and other unusual plants. Grow different varieties of the many

with seasoned mashed tofu or chicken salad, daylilies and squash blossoms look abso- lutely stunning on a tray for garden parties. Don’t forget the humble dandelion, very young leaves and buds are good raw or

shades of lavender to scent your drawers, linens and repel moths, purple, white, or yel- low sweet violets with flowers and leaves to scatter on salads, the many varieties of spicy nasturtiums, leaves and flow- ers are colorful are delicious. Look up edible flowers! And never, ever use pesticides on your garden or any where else. Look on line for natural pest repellants,

are actually in your kitchen! You decide. . .

most ingredients

of uses. Freeze edible flowers in ice cubes to add to punches, lemonade, refreshing drinks, a sheer delight for children. Some herbs can be used in ice creams, jams, and other confections. Lemony garden sorrel can be used in salad, sauces, and pizza. Stuffed

Edible plants have a myriad

stores have organic compost, growing mixes and nutritious additives like seaweed sup- plements. Look for the brand Maxsea actually produced by our neighbors in Redway. You can add bat guano and organic dried manures to your gar- den beds and mulch with peat free compost, hay or wood- chips. Use crushed eggshells, diatomaceous earth, crushed oyster shells and fine gravel around starts to protect them when they are young and vul- nerable. Ask yourself, “what am I buying in the grocery store?” Is it green and white striped zucchini, tender butter lettuce, greens, bok choy,

Sprinkle dandelion petals on brown rice like confetti! Lus- cious cornflowers (Bachelor’s buttons) slightly sweet and spicy clove-like fla- vor are a beautiful garnish. Used safely flowers will become a wonderful addition to your lives, in wine, in remedies, teas, cooking and more. In your up and com- ing garden, raised beds or otherwise, re- member your plants are only as good as the soil you grow them in!

lightly steamed. Most nurseries and box cabbage, ...continued on page 26 Pg 10 • APRIL 2019 • UPBEAT TIMES, INC. “I was gratified to be able to answer promptly, and I did. I said I didn’t know.” ~ Mark Twain

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