Good Food Project Garden Newsletter July  2017 Sprout  
Tomato Troubles

We love those fresh tomatoes in the south in the summertime! But, when diseases like Early Blight, Late Blight, Southern Blight, Verticillium Wilt, Blossom End Rot, Leaf Spot, Fusarium Wilt, Tomato Spotted Wilt, not to mention the stink bugs, assassin bugs and tomato horn worms, sometimes organic gardeners want to throw their hands up in frustration! Everything you read about organic gardening says it's easier to prevent these diseases, than trying to get rid of them, once your tomatoes get infected. Thinking about some nice fall tomatoes? Here are some preventative measures that might help:

  • Try to purchase disease resistant plants - although heirlooms may taste better, they aren't very disease resistant. Warning: "disease resistant" does not mean the plant has immunity, you still must follow some good gardening strategies
  • Rotate the area for planting tomatoes about every 3 - 5 years
  • Clean all garden paraphernalia, like tomato cages and stakes with a disinfecting beach solution of - 1 part bleach - 9 parts water
  •  Soil needs to be warm when tomatoes are planted, they cannot absorb the potassium they need, if the soil is cold (the leaves turn purple) and it weakens them and stunts their growth
  • Don't crowd tomatoes, they must have air circulation to keep the leaves dry and to help prevent disease
  • Many of the fungal diseases are in the soil from previous years, so when it rains, the spores splash back up onto the lower leaves of the plant, infecting them and this gets repeated until the whole plant is infected. Prevent this from happening, by removing the lower branches of the tomato up to the first set of flowers. Mulch with straw or pine straw, this will help keep rain water from splashing up on the leaves.
  • Remove any diseased-looking leaves as soon as possible
  • Water in the morning, so foliage has time to dry out before nightfall
  • Use a sprayer with organic  copper fungicide for bacterial diseases - they can't cure the diseases, but can keep them from spreading
  • Do not compost diseased plants at the end of the season - get them out of the garden 

We hope this information is helpful to you and we invite you to join us as we learn and grow together!

We invite you to join us at Good Food Project for sustainable gardening and nutrition information!

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, or cbaker@fbcenla.org,  and on the web: www.goodfoodprojectcenla.org    
Recipe of the Month
"The Bowl"
A humble bowl can make for a powerful lunch with fresh ingredients like leafy greens, tomatoes, apples, grapes, tuna, or any combination of your favorites! 
Did you know?
  • You can eat all the leafy greens you want at one sitting?
  • Bowls are a big trend? Some of them include breakfast bowls, quinoa bowls, even smoothie bowls 
  •  The colorful, one-bowl idea can be an easy way to get all the nutrients you need in a single meal
  • Remember to add the foods that are healthy for you in moderation, especially take care with those that have sugars, and high calories like avocados, nuts, and oils


1 Large bowl full of leafy greens (spinach, leaf lettuce, arugula)

 1 Can low sodium tuna, or leftover grilled chicken or boiled eggs

1/4 Diced cucumber
1/2 Cup diced tomato
A Couple of apple slices diced
A Handful of red grapes
A Dash of black pepper and dill weed
2 Tablespoons of your favorite vinaigrette dressing
Optional: whatever you choose: red onion, mozzarella cheese, sliced almonds, walnuts, dried cranberries, black beans, whole kernel corn, avocado
Prep time: 12-14 minutes
Place all ingredients in bowl and enjoy!


In July plant:

  • Broccoli (Seed)
  • Brussels Sprouts (Seeds)
  • Cabbage (Seed)
  • Cantaloupe
  • Cauliflower (Seed)
  • Chinese Cabbage (Seed)
  • Collards
  • Cucumbers
  • Cucuzzi Squash
  • Cushaw
  • Eggplant (Plants)
  • Luffa Gourd
  • Okra
  • Peas, Southern
  • Pepper, Hot (Plants)
  • Pepper, Bell (Plants)
  • Pumpkin
  • Rutabagas
  • Shallots
  • Summer Squash
  • Sweet Potato
  • Tomatoes (Plant/Seeds)
  • Watermelons


 *Start seed indoors

 In August plant:

  • Broccoli (Seed)
  • Brussels Sprouts (Seeds)
  • Bunching onions
  • Cabbage (Seed)
  • Cauliflower (Seed)
  • Chard, Swiss
  • Chinese Cabbage (Seed)
  • Collards
  • Cucumbers
  • Eggplant (Plants)
  • Lima Beans
  • Mustard
  • Peas, Southern
  • Pepper, Hot (Plants)
  • Pepper, Bell (Plants)
  • Shallots
  • Summer Squash
  • Tomatoes (Plants/Seeds)
  • Turnips






Watermelon lemonade and seven-layer dip shenanigans from around the eleven parish Food Bank service area with Good Food Project community garden partners this month. Natchitoches Boys and Girls Club of El Camino Real, Pineville Youth Center and Hope House of Central Louisiana



Garden News

Tomatoes and cucumbers are at their summer peak in July; okra is coming along after a late start and eggplants are blooming very nicely, again. Pea picking has also been part of harvesting this month - doesn't some peas, sliced tomatoes, and cornbread sound good about right now?  That's what the great folks up at the Winn Parish Library and the summer reading program kids were treated to this month.

Want to encourage kids to learn sustainable gardening practices? Please call Good Food Project to learn more about our programming, contact GFP at 318-445-2773 or GoodFoodProject@fbcenla.org 


  Up in Pea-Pickin' Country! Thanks to Amy Vines, Winn Parish Librarian, for the photos of the peas and cornbread lunch sponsored by the summer reading program participants for some local library friends!


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

Workday Wednesday

Join our community of gardeners at the Good Food Project of the Food Bank of Central Louisiana! Help us make a difference in Cenla! Join us any Wednesday at the Good Food Project demonstration garden at 3223 Baldwin Avenue  from 7:30-11:30 AM for WORKDAY WEDNESDAYSCome out and harvest with us and learn new things about gardening and make new friends! Or, if you are interested in volunteering at one of our off-site garden programs, please contact us at GoodFoodProject@fbcenla.org 

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


Workday Wednesday volunteers work hard alongside GFP staff to learn about sustainable gardening methods: Top left, Jackie Duncan, Tanya Ingraham, Edan Strother, Caroline Randall, Tyler Medica, and Rhonda Lair




Garden Tips:
Water tomatoes directly on the soil, not the leaves. Prune non-fruiting branches so the plant's energy is directed into growing bigger and better fruit. Use 6 foot stakes for indeterminate varieties of tomatoes. Set the stakes when initially planting the tomato transplants.
A Kaleidoscope of fresh summer vegetables at Good Food Project
Volunteer of the Month - Caroline Randall 


Caroline Randall will begin the new school year as a teacher of art, SPED, and writing, where she actually attended elementary school: St. Frances Cabrini Elementary. Inspiration for her has come by way of the arts, she has a degree in Performing Arts with a concentration in dance. Currently, she is stage managing a play for City Park Players called "Tribes" which focuses on building solidarity with the deaf community under the direction of Diane Falcone. Caroline formerly worked as the Community Development Coordinator for the Arts Council of Central Louisiana. She says she thoroughly believes in the importance of supporting the arts and non profits like the Good Food Project. As she states: "Just do it." "There's always something to do, you just have to jump in and get involved!"


We enjoyed having Caroline participate as a volunteer in the demonstration garden this month.

She says her volunteer time at Good Food Project "was absolute healing for the soul." She further stated that she felt better than she had for years after spending part of her morning helping at GFP and that for her, it was a workout that seemed much more fun than being at the gym. Caroline loved that there were "real live chickens" that she could hold, stating that she had never had the opportunity to experience that before. "It didn't seem like work, especially when you are surrounded by aromatic herbs like mint and rosemary." She further elaborated that "when you are gardening, you are taking part in a 'flow' experience...where you can think creatively and affect the world in a positive way."  


The community of volunteers grows stronger as GFP strives to connect a diverse group of folks interested in experiencing the benefits gardening can have for individuals and the community at large


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.