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Trillium 延龄草

The Giant Trillium (Trillium chloropetalum) is one of my favorite early spring flowers. A member of the lily family, the trillium has the characteristic trinity of three outer petals, three inner petals, and a three-part stigma; the presence of six stamens helps differentiate it from members of the iris family.

Our Giant Trilliums at Hidden Villa greet me like an old friend, blooming in the same locations every year. Giant Trilliums are also very rare and are almost impossible to find in a home garden, requiring precise growing conditions and taking up to seven years to bloom from seed. Considering its seasonal rarity, the trillium provides me with an annual reminder to appreciate our native woodland’s precious and sometimes fragile beauty – an organism that our wild lands nurture better than my fellow human cultivators.

Come out to Hidden Villa and see if you can catch a glimpse of these specials flowers for yourselves. Please also remember that it is illegal to pick these wildflowers. We want everyone to get a chance to share in their reunion or discovery!

trillium lz

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Good breakfast!

Tilly, pictured below, was born on January 20, 2013 making her the third cow at Hidden Villa. Her Mom is Cleo and her older sister is Vida.

got -choclate -milk -today

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The Beautiful Turkey Tail Mushrooms

the turkey tail mushroom

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Amusing Garden

garden lz

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Miner's Lettuce: Hidden Villa's Valentine

Miner’s lettuce, also called spring beauty, winter pursuant or Indian lettuce, is one of the first spring greens to emerge at Hidden Villa. They are tender, succulent and reminiscent of spinach, with have a wild flavor, that’s not too overpowering. 

miners lettuce1 lz

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Blue Herons

If you’ve been outside at Hidden Villa lately, you may have noticed that our resident blue herons have come back. We usually have two so we’ll hope to see his/her counterpart soon! The farm seems to be their spring vacation home.

You don't need a calendar here to know what month it is! Just look outside your window and you know it’s February if you see the blue herons. 

blue heron1 lz

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Purple in the Wheelbarrow

purple color lz

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Cold Cabbage

cold cabbage1 lz

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Hidden Villa Cats

hidden villa cats1

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Morning Frost

morning -frost1 lz

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Townsend's Warbler (黄眉林莺)

Happy Holidays from Hidden Villa!

The native birds are enjoying the season, feasting on the persimmon trees in the education garden. I hope you are having a wonderful holiday season as well. Thank you for supporting my picture blog. It’s been a real delight to capture the beauty of Hidden Villa.

Bird Pictured:  Townsend's Warbler (黄眉林莺)

townsends_warbler

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Walking on the Farm

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Beautiful Ginkgo fruits

ginkgo_-fruit_lz
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Hidden Villa Persimmon

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CSA Recipe: Winter Squash Soup

Just in time for the rain! Here is a recipe for a winter squash soup using autumnal butternut squash and the last of the pepper harvest, which makes for a surprisingingly delicious partnership of flavors. 
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CSA Newsletter: Week of November 12, 2012

Being the journeyman farmer at Hidden Villa, managing the CSA, and running the farmers market stand has been an incredibly valuable experience for me. I have learned far more about small farm management and nonprofit management in the past nine months than I could have imagined. I honestly feel that I now have the skills and knowledge to successfully manage a small farm.

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Bryden Johnston
Hi Carol, Thanks so much for getting in touch! Our CSA box features a butternut squash today. Many Hidden Villa staff actually u... Read More
Wednesday, 21 November 2012 13:46
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CSA Recipe: Fuyu Persimmon Bundt Cake

We are very excited that the orchard we invested in planting 4 years ago are now literally bearing fruit in substantial quantities, allowing us to provide fruit to our CSA members in their weekly baskets. From cherries to peaches to persimmons and more, providing fruit to our CSA members allows them to have seasonal, delicious fruit in varietities suited for our local climate and environment. Enjoy this recipe using our Fuyu persimmons, which are squat and firm with a sweet and delicate cinnamon taste. 

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CSA Newsletter: Week of November 5, 2012

This morning I participated in our weekly intern class, this being the second installment of Swine (pig) Management. To start the class we opened with a narrative by Wendell Barry. In this passage the author speaks of the joy that he finds in farming, and the satisfaction and fulfillment a farming job can provide. The passage concludes with Wendell and his 5 year-old granddaughter sitting atop a wagon. Though it was at the end of a hard day’s work, she looks to him and says, “Isn’t this fun Wendell?”.

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CSA Recipe: Kabocha Squash Cheesecake with Walnut Crust

Kabocha is a Japanese variety of winter squash. Ours have finally cured in the field and are ready for harvest. When the kabochas arrive, it feels like fall is officially here. Prepare and enjoy kabochas as you would other winter squash, including in desserts like this recipe!
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CSA Newsletter: Week of October 29, 2012

As members of our farm share at Hidden Villa, you are actively choosing to support a small farm and have a direct connection to where your food is coming from. And we thank you for that! That decision, whether it is for the freshness and quality of your produce, the opportunity to foster understanding within your family of where food comes from, or the practice of eating with the changing of the seasons, fosters a personal connection to, and understanding of, sustainable food practices. The framework for the CSA program that we offer here at Hidden Villa has become popular not only in California, but throughout the United States as more people are beginning to value the importance of sustainable agricultural production and find the most transparent ways to support food production they believe in. Yet not all of our food choices can be so easily traced to its source. As consumers, we have become tasked with educating ourselves on where food found at the supermarket is coming from, and how it was grown.

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