Good Food Project Garden Newsletter
 February 2016 Sprout  
If kids grow it, they will eat it!
Horseshoe Drive Elementary New Vision Academy fifth graders helping install their new garden
School gardens seem somehow trendy, and current, don't they? In reality, they've been around as part of the curriculum of American schools since the early 1900s. Here's an interesting blurb from a book dated 1918, that while a bit formal sounding, could be applicable to our current thinking about school gardens. "The importance of encouraging our children in outdoor work with living plants is now recognized. It benefits the health, broadens the education, and gives valuable training in industry and thrift. The great garden movement is sweeping all over America, and our present problem is to direct it, and make it most profitable to the children in our schools and homes." - Van Evrie Kilpatrick, 1918, in the Child's Food Garden, with a Few Suggestions for Flower Culture.
Teaching kids to love gardening has some amazing benefits:
  • If kids grow the food (that they often dismiss at home) they will eat it
  • Kids fitness and health improves when they spend more time outdoors and start choosing healthy food over junk food
  • Kids learn social skills, teamwork, cooperation, patience, and how to focus in a garden
  • Garden-based lessons encompass all learning abilities and styles, allowing kids to blossom where they are

Help school gardens flourish by supporting schools as a volunteer, or with your tax-deductible donation to the school or to programs like Good Food Project that currently supports 15 elementary and middle school gardens across central Louisiana.


For information about partnering with the Good Food Project, or for other GFP program opportunities, contact the Good Food Project staff at 318.445.2773 or via email: fboudreaux@fbcenla.org, bkarzwagman@fbcenla.org, cbaker@fbcenla.org,  and on the web: www.goodfoodprojectcenla.org    

Recipe of the Month

Creamy Turnip Soup


Did you know?

  • Turnips harvested young and small, "baby turnips" are sweeter tasting and can be eaten raw in salads
  • They are a low-calorie root vegetable
  • Turnips are a good source of anti-oxidants, minerals, vitamins, & fiber
  • Turnips are rich in Vitamin C
  • Turnip greens are a good source of B-complex vitamins


4 Medium turnips (about 1 1/2 lbs.) plus 1 1/2 cup thinly sliced turnip greens, divided

2 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil, divided

1 Tbs. butter

1 Medium onion sliced

1/2 Tsp. dried rosemary

1/2 Tsp. salt plus a pinch (divided)

1/4 Tsp. white pepper plus a pinch (divided)

4 Cups reduced sodium chicken broth

1/4 Cup shredded carrot

2 Tbs. thinly sliced scallion greens

2 Tsp. white-wine vinegar



1. Peel and slice turnips. Heat 1 tbs. oil and butter in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add onion and cook, stirring, until beginning to brown, about 5 minutes. Add the turnips, rosemary, 1/2 tsp. salt and 1/4 tsp. white pepper, stir to combine. Cover and cook, stirring once, or twice for 10 minutes.

2. Add broth, increase hat to high and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to maintain a simmer, cover and cook until the turnips are tender, 10-12 minutes more.

3. Meanwhile, toss the turnip greens in a medium bowl with carrot, scallion greens, vinegar, the remaining 1 tbs. oil and pinch of salt and pepper.

4. Puree the soup in the pan using an immersion blender or transfer to a regular blender and blend until smooth. (Use caution pureeing hot soup) Serve each portion of soup topped with a generous of the salad.

Makes 6-1 cup servings







In February  plant:

  • Beans, Snap, Bush, Pole
  • Beets
  • Carrots
  • Cauliflower
  • Chard, Swiss
  • Chinese Cabbage
  • Corn, Sweet
  • Eggplant (Seed)
  • Kohlrabi
  • Mustard Greens
  • Onion, Leek (Sets)
  • Peas, English
  • Pepper, Hot (Seed)
  • Pepper, Bell (Seed)
  • Potatoes, Irish
  • Radishes
  • Shallots
  • Spinach
  • Tomatoes (Seed)
  • Turnips




In March plant:

  • Beans, Snap, Bush,Pole
  • Beets
  • Cantaloupes
  • Chard, Swiss
  • Collards
  • Corn, Sweet
  • Cucumbers
  • Eggplant (Seed)
  • Eggplant (Plants)
  • Kohlrabi
  • Mustard Greens
  • Peas, Southern
  • Pepper, Hot (Seed)
  • Pepper, Hot (Plants)
  • Radishes
  • Summer Squash
  • Tomatoes (Seed)
  • Tomatoes (Plant)
  • Watermelons





     Irish potatoes cut up for planting in February - looking forward to great harvests in late May or early June              

Garden News
Good Food Project partnered with Horseshoe Drive New Vision Academy ( teacher/sponsor, Jarome Davis) this month to install a school garden. Third and fifth grade students eagerly participated in a hands-on learning experience of preparing the soil and planting transplants in two new raised garden beds and portable containers. Many of them will use this experience as a topic for written reports in their classrooms.
Fifth grade students at Horseshoe Drive New Vision Academy planted cabbage transplants in their new garden
During the winter months our seed supplies from summer contributions were depleted due to the increase in new gardens and successful fall planting.  We put out a special request to several certified organic seed suppliers, a number of which promptly and generously responded.  Volunteers sorted hundreds of packages of seeds that will all be planted or sprouted then planted (as with tomatoes,) throughout our GFP garden nutrition program sites during March and April.  We wish to thank them and encourage you to view their websites to see the amazing array of organic seeds, some of which will soon be growing in Central Louisiana. 
Southern Exposure Seed Exchange  http://www.southernexposure.com/
Seed Savers Exchange (Herman's Garden Seed)   h ttp://www.seedsavers.org/
Sow True Seeds  http://www.sowtrueseed.com/
TomatoFest Heirloom Tomato Seeds http://www.tomatofest.com  

For more information about how you can partner with Good Food Project, contact us at  goodfoodproject@fbcenla.org or call 318-445-2773 

Workday Wednesday

You are invited to join us at the GFP demonstration garden on Workday Wednesdays. In the garden, you will experience learning to grow food in a sustainable, organic way, while getting an opportunity to meet new people, and to help those in need in the community. If you, your organization, or work place would like to be involved, please give us a call. We would love to hear from you!

Each Wednesday from 7:30-11:30 AM all adults and children are invited to come out for a fun day of learning and giving back  to the community. Let's grow together! Learn more.

If Wednesdays aren't good for you, call us to set up another volunteer day! 318-445-2773 



Ms. Mae chose freshly harvested turnips to add to her senior box this month at the Food Bank of Central Louisiana


Garden Tip:

Insects can't stand plants such as garlic, onions, chives, and chrysanthemums. Grow these plants around the garden to help repel insects. - Planet Natural

An array of freshly harvested produce from the GFP demo garden that Food Bank clients can choose


Meet the Good Food Project Team 

 Good Food Project Staff: Dellen Ross, Sr. Barbara Karz-Wagman, Frances Boudreaux and Cindy Baker

Dellen Ross, Sr. began at Good Food Project as a volunteer a few years ago. His love for the garden quickly became apparent and helped put him on the short list as GFP's Garden Assistant. Dellen's good nature and willingness to help out wherever he is needed is much appreciated. He says being able to grow vegetables like tomatoes, eggplant, and watermelons is soothing and "helps take his mind off of stuff." Dellen finds gardening quite rewarding as he helps people learn how to grow.


Barbara Karz-Wagman, the Development Manager for GFP, raised funds for 19 years for non-profits including the American Red Cross, Arthritis Foundation, and Jewish Federations, among others. Barbara jokingly says, "the other staff grows the green, while I raise the green!" Her enthusiasm is contagious, as she looks for ways to help GFP remain a sustainable, viable program in Central Louisiana. Barbara  applies her experience and love for the program to motivate people to support GFP; just as she does for the whole team at the Food Bank of Central Louisiana. 


Frances Boudreaux, Keller Enterprises Director of the Good Food Project, also started as a volunteer at the demo garden in 2012, later becoming the Food Bank of Central Louisiana's Volunteer Coordinator. Her tenure as volunteer coordinator evolved into a position as Garden Outreach Coordinator and eventually, GFP Director. A love for gardening and floral arranging has been a life-long avocation for Boudreaux. Frances formerly served as an advocate for battered women and children; and that experience has aided her in working in community garden settings, especially with the children's after school programs that GFP and the Food Bank serves.


Cindy Baker, joined GFP in July 2015 as Community Gardens Manager. She is a graduate of University at Monroe with a B.S. degree in Agribusiness; her experience includes crop research and commercial nursery development. Cindy's diverse education and experience includes her previous work with developmentally delayed individuals ages 5-75. Baker never meets a stranger; her easy-going manner and can-do attitude are invaluable assets to the team. Cindy has become the resident staffer who cares for GFP's animals-red wigglers and chicken and is always willing to research for new ways to improve the program.


GFP welcomes  individual and organizational volunteers at our community gardens and at the Good Food Project on Wednesday mornings in the demonstration garden, 3223 Baldwin Avenue - Food Bank of Central Louisiana 71301 - 318-445-2773



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