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Fresh from Wellspring Charitable Gardens - June 6, 2024

From the Garden this Week… Green Cabbage, Dino & Russian Kale Bouquet, Onions, Lettuce, Broccoli Sprouts, Summer Squash, Carrots, Potatoes, Red Radishes, Oregano, Parsley, Chamomile, Apricots & Cherries

Using your Produce… by Julie Moreno


The heat is on, and our summer produce is just about ready to harvest. We are already filling baskets with several variations of summer squash, zucchini, yellow squash and patty pan. They can all be cooked and used interchangeably. I included a recipe today for squash noodles. I simply sauté them with a little garlic, Parmesan and fresh herbs. You can add meat and sauce or serve them as is for a side dish. You can use a spiralizer if you have one, but you can also shred the squash with the large holes on a cheese grater, use a peeler to make thin strips, or just cut thin strips with a knife. If you do cut them, allow a slightly longer time for the noodles to cook.


Zucchini Noodles


1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced

2-3 summer squash, shredded,

     spiralized or shaved

½ teaspoon salt

¼ cup shredded Parmesan cheese

¼ cup torn fresh herbs

¼ teaspoon freshly ground black


* Heat the oil in a large, high-sided skillet over medium heat. Add garlic to the pan, stir and cook quickly until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the shredded zucchini and sauté for 2 minutes. Stir in the salt and cook for 1-2 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the cheese, basil and fresh ground pepper.

Fresh German Chamomile Tea


   Fresh Chamomile Flowers, separated from stems, Boiling Water

      - Optional Additions – mint, lemon balm


1.      Bring 2 cups of water to a rolling boil.

2.      Place 12 Chamomile Flowers (with 2-3 leaves

   of mint or lemon balm) in a tea strainer.

3.      Pour the boiling water over top.

4.      Allow Chamomile Flowers to steep for 5-7 minutes.

5.      Strain tea into mug, add a teaspoon of honey to the brew, and enjoy.

Potato Classics…

Our spring produce comes together perfectly in this classic German Potato Salad. I recommend letting the potatoes sit with the dressing for about 20 minutes, but it should still be warm. If you need to make it ahead, let it come to room temperature or warm it up slightly so that the bacon fat melts.

German Potato Salad


2 pounds potatoes

4 slices bacon, finely diced

½ cup finely chopped onion

¾ cup beef stock

6 Tbsp white vinegar

1 tsp mustard, Dijon or mild

   German mustard

* Boil the potatoes in a large pot covered with an inch of water over high heat until tender, about 20 minutes depending on the size of the potatoes. Meanwhile, cook the bacon over medium heat until crispy. Take out the bacon and set it aside, leave the rendered fat in the pan. Add the onion to the pan and sauté until translucent but not browned, about 3-4 minutes. Add beef broth and bring to a simmer. Turn off the heat and add vinegar, mustard, oil, sugar, salt, and pepper to the onions. Let the potatoes cool slightly so you can handle them. Peel the potatoes. Cut the potatoes into bite-sized pieces and put them in a large bowl. Pour the onions and liquid over the potatoes. Mix the salad gently then fold in the bacon pieces and parsley. Let the salad sit at room temperature for at least 20 minutes before serving so that the potatoes can absorb the flavor of the dressing. Top with fresh chives.

Metaphors of Soil and Soul…

Bug Life

by Ronda May Melendez & Keith F Martin


The cruciferous vegetable season is drawing to a close, and the broccoli, cauliflower, and cabbages are now flowering and drawing insects. Yes, BUGS! Memory reflexively recalls the bad bugs – harmful pests that infest a plant’s leaves and destroy those photosynthesizing arrays that transform light into energy, food, and life. We forget, though, there are good bugs – pollinators (bees) and predators (praying mantis) that snack on bad bugs. Beneficial bugs help propagate plants or patrol the garden’s grounds. So, not all bugs are created equal, or a bug is a bug but is not a bug! Some promote health; others destroy it. Correctly identifying good and bad bugs and understanding what makes them thrive is vitally important to the health and harvest of the garden.


Flowering purple broccoli and fragrant cilantro draw good bugs, such as lacewings, which prey on aphids and mites whose toxic waste (“bug do”) cause plant leaves to dry out and curl. The lacewing’s snacking habits are a beautiful thing, and we are grateful for them. There are, however, nasty bugs that gardeners draw through poor agrarian practices. Not long ago I was in the fields harvesting produce and removing damaged leaves from the plants. I first gathered the desirable crop and then stripped the undesirable leaves and cast them to the ground between the rows. Master gardener Heidi quietly observed my self-satisfied efficiency – picking and plucking concurrently - and then casually mentioned that the damaged leaves would draw destructive interlopers, such as snails or slugs, to our crops. Chagrined, I was still grateful for her lesson. My thoughtless “efficiency” was leaving a trail of tasty morsels across a barren furrow to another ridge row spread with a delicious garden buffet! 


Lessons on bug life have been crawling through my mind all week. How often do we recall something that “bugs” us and reflexively deem it “bad” instead of becoming curious about its nature and our behaviors that draw it to us? Are the “bugs” pollinators, predators, or polluters? How might we best manage the “bugs” that cultivate or destroy life across our mental, emotional, and relational landscapes? Recognition and understanding - getting to know our “bugs” – go a long way to support our well-being and ensure our thriving.


“But solid food is for the mature, who because

of practice have their senses trained

to discern good and evil.”    

Hebrews 5:14 


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