Good Food Project Garden Newsletter June  2017 Sprout  

What a bummer when you have a beautiful stand of yellow crookneck or zucchini squash and after only a few harvests, the leaves start looking wilted, and the fruit is wrinkled and shriveled!! Looking closer you see a mess of yellow sawdust-looking debris at the base of the stem. This is called frass - it is the excrement of insect larva. Now you know that most likely you have the dreaded squash vine borer. This is the larva of a common clearwing moth whose pupa has overwintered in a cocoon in your garden soil. Adults emerge in early spring to midsummer. They lay their eggs at the base of the stem of some of the easiest vegetables to grow - the squash. Susceptible squash are the zucchini, yellow, (crookneck and straight), and pumpkins. Butternut squash, melons and cucumbers are less susceptible. All of these are known as cucurbits, hence, the name of the moth is the Melitta cucurbitae. Controlling these little devils is more about prevention than anything, especially, if you practice organic gardening. Here are some tips:

  • Plant squash as early as possible to have some yields before adults emerge (March)
  • Don't plant squash in the same bed, two years in a row
  • Sprinkle diatomaceous earth around the base of young stems to discourage moths from laying eggs (reapply after rain)
  • Sprinkle black pepper as a defense
  • Clean up all debris and soil in the fall
  •  Catch or destroy moths at twilight or early morning - they are attracted to yellow - place yellow bowls of soapy water around the garden to attract them - yellow sticky traps work, also
  • Bt (Dipel) can be injected into the stem, but it is hard to reach the larva deep inside the stem
  • Make a slit with a sharp knife above the damaged area, extract the larva or push the wire through it to kill it. Lay moist soil on top of the stem - hopefully, it will sprout secondary roots and continue to grow
  • Purchase row covers or use strips of nylon stockings, or aluminum foil to discourage egg laying. Row covers can be expensive, heat up quickly in Louisiana, and hide blossoms from pollinators
  • You can also purchase parasitic wasps to release in the garden-they are the vine borer's natural enemy
  • You can continue to plant squash several times throughout the summer  - it takes 45-50 days for harvest
Squash vine borer inside the stem of a yellow crookneck squash plant - notice the yellowed frass
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
Quick Quinoa Salad
Quick Quinoa Salad served at City of Natchitoches Summer Camp M.R. Weaver Elementary - Recipe Courtesy of Tia Powers, a GFP Partner who is the LSU Ag Office - SNAP Educator
Did you know?
  • Quinoa is not technically a grain, but is cooked like one
  • Ancient Incans called it the "Mother of All Grains" 
  •  Quinoa is a near-perfect super food, full of protein and nutrients
  • Quinoa comes in many colors, including red, and is related to spinach and beet


1 Cup quinoa 
2 Cups water
1/4 Cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 Limes, juiced
2 Teaspoons ground cumin
1 Jalapeno pepper, finely chopped
1 1/2 Cups of cherry  tomatoes halved or roma-style tomatoes quartered and chopped
1 15 oz. can black beans drained and rinsed
1/4 Cup Red or green bell pepper finely chopped
1/4 Cup fresh chopped cilantro
Salt and black pepper to taste
1. Bring quinoa and water to a boil in a saucepan. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover and simmer until quinoa is tender and water has absorbed, 10-15 minutes, let cool.
2.Whisk olive oil, lime juice, cumin, jalapenos, and green pepper together in a bowl.
3. Combine quinoa, black beans, and tomatoes in a bowl. Pour dressing over mixture, toss to coat. Stir in cilantro, season with salt and pepper. Serve immediately or allow to chill in refrigerator - flavors are enhanced with chilling.


In June plant:

  • Amaranth
  • Basil
  • Bergamot
  • Cantaloupe
  • Chard, Swiss
  • Collards
  • Corn, Sweet
  • Cucumbers
  • Cucuzzi Squash
  • Cushaw
  • Edible Soybean
  • Eggplant (Seeds*)
  • Eggplant (Plants)
  • Garlic Chives
  • Hyssop
  • Kale
  • Kohlrabi
  • Lemon Balm
  • Lemon Verbena
  • Lettuce (in pots in partial shade)
  • Luffa Gourd
  • Mexican Oregano
  • Mexican Tarragon
  • Mints (All varieties)
  • Mirliton
  • Mustard Greens
  • Okra
  • Oregano
  • Peanuts
  • Peas, Southern
  • Pepper, Hot (Plants)
  • Pepper, Bell (Plants)
  • Pumpkin
  • Rosemary
  • Spinach (Malabar, New Zealand)
  • Summer Squash
  • Sweet Potato
  • Sweet Potato
  • Tomatoes (Plant)
  • Watermelons
  • Yarrow

 *Start seed indoors

 In July plant:

  • Broccoli (Seed)
  • Brussels Sprouts (Seeds)
  • Cabbage (Seed)
  • Cantaloupe
  • Cauliflower (Seed)
  • Collards
  • Chinese Cabbage (Seed)
  • 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 (Plants/Seeds)
  • Watermelons






Scenes from around the eleven parish Food Bank service area with Good Food Project community garden partners this month. Linda Mills displays some freshly harvested vegetables from the Pinegrove Apartments, Teacher, Tara Sapp shows the lovely produce harvested from Frankie Ray Jackson School in Natchitoches Parish, Edna Craft proudly shows us the yellow squash harvested at the Delta Storefront pantry in Ferriday, and adult women and children take delight in showing their great harvest of tomatoes and peppers at Hope House of Central Louisiana.



Garden News

June has been unusually cooler, but a wet and humid month. Garden pests are emerging and multiplying - organic gardeners must stay vigilante to prevent and control their damage. Many of Good Food Project community garden partners are getting nice harvests as the summer gets into full swing. 

To learn more about our programming, contact GFP at 318-445-2773 or GoodFoodProject@fbcenla.org 


  June 2017 Garden scenes from Sunshine Center Apartments - Leesville, 4H Kids at the LSU Ag Office in Oberlin, GFP Director, Frances Boudreaux talks about sustainable gardening to kids at the New Bethel Community Baptist Church summer camp, GFP Community Gardens Manager, Cindy Baker, shows a child at Hope House of Central Louisiana how to plant cucumber seeds, beautiful yellow squash harvested from Mabel Brasher Elementary, Bolton High School CBT has a very successful garden with tons of eggplant, bell peppers, tomatoes and squash.


  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: Barbara Calcote, Liz Langford with daughter Moriah, and son, Zephaniah and Jen Sharbono with daughter Callie




Garden Tips:
Yellow sticky traps are a non toxic method to control and monitor aphids, cucumber beetles, fruit flies, fungus, gnats, leafhoppers, froghoppers, moths, white flies, flea beetles and leaf miners. Sticky traps can be purchased at a local gardening center. You can also set up a yellow pan trap - a quick and easy way to catch pets because many insects are attracted to yellow. Fill a yellow pan or bowl (a plastic party bowl or Frisbee works well) with an inch or two of water. Add a drop or two of detergent to break the surface tension of the water. Place the bowl on the ground near where you are spotting the pests. Some flies, wasps, and beetles will fall in and drown. Check the pans often, as the insects decompose quickly. You may get some beneficial insects trapped as well, so monitor frequently and remove once pests have been controlled.
Volunteers of the Month - The Sharbono Children 



Good Food Project has typically had a broad reach when it comes to teaching children sustainable gardening methods, from home school volunteers at GFP, to public and private school gardens, to afterschool and shelter programs - we have learned that kids quickly grasp gardening skills. Kids also see that gardening can be a fun learning experience!


Four of those children that Good Food Project staff and volunteers have come to know and look forward to working with, are the children of Jennifer and Nathan Sharbono: Nine-year-old twins, Riley and Sadie,  six-year-old Callie, and four-year-old Jude. Their mother, Jen, home schools them and has been bringing them to GFP for Workday Wednesdays since Jude was about 18 months old. She says that the GFP demo garden has been a source of knowledge, inspiration, experience and productive work for them. The information and experiences they've received has helped them start their own backyard garden at home.  All the kids seem to feel very comfortable in the demonstration garden. They work beautifully with all ages of folks who come for garden work days. These children are polite, well-behaved and are always willing and eager to take on any assignment. They've learned to work with adult-sized tools and help harvest vegetables, clean them, weigh them and help distribute them to clients of the Food Bank. They've learned about the benefits of worms, butterflies and bees, collected chicken eggs, weeded, and planted seeds. We salute these beautiful children and their parents - they are raising true leaders of tomorrow!


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.