Happy Gardening...

We have created this blog to keep everybody up to date and informed about the Paradise 4th Produce a Plenty Project. We would love everyone to add pics to the blog so email them to me with a description or story to go along with it and I will update the blog so everyone else can enjoy the progress and fun experiences of the garden. My email is barrelracingbina@yahoo.com. Thanks Sabrina Whalen

Friday, July 16, 2010

Those nerve wracking Saturday Matinee cliffhangers:

The ongoing saga of the Lords garden
July Friendshippper message
When many of us were growing up, every Saturday morning we took a shining dime or quarter and went to the local Saturday Matinee movie. One of the features was the weekly cliff hanger, where the heroes and heroines were left in great peril at the very end with the strong admonition to return next week to see if they could be saved. All week long their plight was in the back of our minds haunting us. We rushed to the theatre next Saturday to see what we hoped would be the rescue. True to form they were indeed miraculously preserved only to find themselves facing another perilous situation at the end of that session.
This year’s garden has been a roller coaster of cliff hanging perils that we escape from only to find ourselves facing the next big predicament. This year cold wet weather threatened to delay ground preparation and frost free planting. A sunny break in the weather gave us a window of opportunity to plant our crop
After a slow germination period the weather warmed and the plants took off. But, the weeds got off to an even greater jump and were soon chocking out our precious plants. Desperate calls to the members brought out members in force and subdued the rapid growth of weeds.
We got behind on installing the climbing trellis. Potato bug infestations appeared and began their rapid invasion. The plants began to look a bit peaked and just moped. Well, thanks to a plea from the pulpit and a massive invite, members and friends joined the rescue particularly Tuesday July 12thwith over 40 different individuals showing up eager to work.
Not only was a massive amount of work accomplished, but the garden was abuzz with fellowshipping and friendshipping. Plans were made to learn more and teach and share with others. More is about to cone as we began to harvest and distribution
A mighty thanks to all of you who have repeatedly answered the call and overcame the weekly perils. Carry on. Carry on, Carry onnnnnnn

Noel Gill

Garden Response

Wow, Wow and double wow. I couldn't believe the ward's response to the call to help with the garden. Beth and I went over about 6:00 pm Tuesday evening thinking the five or six we gave a personal invite would show up. But low and behold when we got there the Derricotts were busy weeding the onions. She was shortly joined by Emily Williams, sister Bytendorf, Danny Jones, Grant Rawlins and grandkids, Sis Clark, a whole slew of energetic young women and their leaders quickly joined us... Patricia Tinney put in an appearance as well as did bro Jensen who married the Havialnd girl. Steve Carey put in some long hours as well as many many others that I couldn't keep an accurate count of Beth and I counted over forty different individuals who joined us that evening. What a glorious experience it was. Several of the novice gardeners had multiple questions of the more seasoned gardeners. We took groups through a tour of the garden sharing master gardening tips for each of the crops being raised. There was much fellowshipping and friendshipping going on. . Not only was there a great spirit present, but a huge amount of work was accomplished. Virtually all the crops received some weeding. Some was very thorough others at least controlled the worst. Beans and tomatoes were trained to grow on the trellis as were the cucumbers, Fertilizer was applied to the corn, squash and peppers.

At evenings end the Lord must have been very proud of the stewardship of his garden and the faithful efforts of the laborers. I sat in my wheel chair with tears in my eyes. Not only because I was limited in my ability to contribute but because of the true love of Christ that was displayed that wonderful evening. I can only imagine the spirit that the individuals and families carried home that evening.

In addition to those in attendance this evening it was brought to my attention that many other families are going by at times that better met their needs, Although we had a marvelous year last year, I truly believe we are on target to o surpass the efforts and produce from last year this year.

Please warmly thank all those who are contributing and sharing and keep up the encouragement to o even further lengthen their stride.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Food Storage Myths...

"We are confronted today with a great variety of serious economic and social conditions. But facing periods of economic stress, even deprivation, is not new to us as a Church. Throughout their history, the Saints have more than once faced such trials. As a result, the Lord from the early days of the Church has guided his leaders to see clearly certain correct principles. We feel compelled to reaffirm these basic principles of temporal salvation.
“It has also been my intention to encourage all Latter-day Saints to review again their personal and family preparedness and to implement immediately the principles and practices that will ensure their self-sufficiency. If we will discuss these truths in our family councils and make a plan to do all in our power to live these principles, we shall all enjoy the promise of the Lord, ‘If ye are prepared ye shall not fear.’ (D&C 38:30.)
”More importantly, if we will live providentially and righteously, we will qualify for the greater promise: ’And whoso is found a faithful, a just, and a wise steward shall enter into the joy of his Lord, and shall inherit eternal life.’” (D&C 51:19.) Marion G. Romney, “Principles of Temporal Salvation,” Tambuli, Oct 1981, 1.
Today we are again facing perilous times. Church leaders have asked us to refocus our priorities and become self-reliant in our temporal affairs. Over the years our approach to self-reliance may have changed, but the counsel has remained the same. From the time of Joseph in Egypt, to the warnings of Brigham Young and others in this generation, the Lord has always warned when a day of famine and tribulation was imminent.
"If people let the government decide what foods they eat and what medicines they take, their bodies will soon be in as sorry a state as are the souls who live under tyranny." - Thomas Jefferson
Yet despite the clarity of warnings to prepare, myths and misunderstandings abound whenever Food Storage is mentioned as the object of our focus in preparing for troubled times and events. So, to minimize some potential misunderstandings, I have ventured to identify some common Myths associated with this subject:
Myth Number One: The Church will take care of us. They will not let us go hungry.
With the growth of the Church throughout the world the physical care of the saints has become an impossible task for the Church should a large scale calamity strike. It is among the missions of the Church to provide humanitarian relief to the extent of its means in response to disasters, but it has never been the role of the Church to assume responsibility for the maintenance of every member, when it is the duty of each household to seek the means to be self-reliant. Today the church is capable of growing, canning, and/or storing more foodstuffs than ever before, but this would service only a small percentage of members and is no substitute for the prudent planning of each family to be self-sustaining in emergencies and in times of economic downturn.
"Relief Society stands for self-reliance. The best food storage is not in welfare grain elevators but in sealed cans and bottles in the homes of our people. What a gratifying thing it is to see cans of wheat and rice and beans under the beds or in the pantries of women who have taken welfare responsibility into their own hands." - Gordon B. Hinckley, “In the Arms of His Love,” Ensign, Nov 2006, 115–18.
President Spencer W. Kimball taught concerning self-reliance: “The responsibility for each person’s social, emotional, spiritual, physical, or economic well-being rests first upon himself, second upon his family, and third upon the Church if he is a faithful member thereof. “No true Latter-day Saint, while physically or emotionally able, will voluntarily shift the burden of his own or his family’s well-being to someone else.” - Ensign, Nov. 1977, p. 77.
Myth Number Two: The Church has told us what we should be storing and it is wheat, beans, powdered milk and honey.
This is not the case and it never has been.
"One night the phone rang at the home of Russell Hakes, who at the time was serving as stake president. ‘President Hakes,’ came a man’s determined voice, ‘I refuse to store powdered milk! The Church wants me to store powdered milk, and I just won’t do it!’
“President Hakes could hear the emotion in the man’s voice. He assured him that the Church did not expect him to store powdered milk if he didn’t want to. ‘You can choose any kind of storage for your year’s supply; it’s up to you,’ he said, trying to calm his caller.
“’Well, I’ll be hanged if I’ll store powdered milk!’ the man huffed, slightly appeased. ‘I have six cows!’
“We can all appreciate the humor of this situation. When our leaders urge us to be self-reliant, to manage our resources wisely, and to be prepared for emergencies, they are not advocating any specific storage item as an indispensable part of gospel living. What they are asking us to do is invite the spirit of self-reliance and provident living into our homes.” - “Catching the Vision of Self-Reliance,” Ensign, May 1986, 89
Myth Number Three: The Church tells us we should store a three month supply of the foods we eat. A year’s supply is no longer taught.
"Build a small supply of food that is part of your normal, daily diet. One way to do this is to purchase a few extra items each week to build a one-week supply of food. Then you can gradually increase your supply until it is sufficient for three months. These items should be rotated regularly to avoid spoilage.
“For longer-term needs, and where permitted, gradually build a supply of food that will last a long time and that you can use to stay alive, such as wheat, white rice, and beans. These items can last 30 years or more when properly packaged and stored in a cool, dry place. A portion of these items may be rotated in your three-month supply." - All is Safely Gathered In: Family Home Storage
Yes, we are counseled to store a three month supply of the foods we normally eat. We are also asked to store a year’s supply of foods which will sustain life. Again, the decision as to exactly what to store is up to you. Your food storage should reflect the eating habits and preferences, dietary requirements and food allergies within your own family.
Myth Number Four: When you get hungry enough you will eat anything.
Studies of survivors of disasters have taught us many things. One of those lessons is that children and the elderly will starve to death before they eat foods they do not like or that they are unfamiliar with. As you decide which foods are appropriate for your family commit to learning to use them in various ways and to incorporate them into your daily menu.
A second thing researchers have learned is that those who are able to maintain a relatively "normal" lifestyle, make better decisions, and not only survive, but thrive during a crisis. For this reason it is important to consider the foods which are comfort foods for your family. For me it is chocolate, so there will always be brownie mix and M&Ms in my food storage.
Myth Number Five: Now that the Church has starter kits I have all I need.
There is a reason the kits are called "Starter Kits". They are a place to start. During a time of crisis, no matter the cause you will need to maintain a healthy lifestyle which includes a balanced diet to have the strength and energy you will need to deal with the added stress which a disaster brings. A starter kit does not provide those nutrients. You can have a hundred stored and you will survive but you will not thrive.
Myth Number Six: I ordered a year's supply of dehydrated or freeze dried foods so I am set.
Again, remember that during a crisis some will starve rather than eat unfamiliar foods. If you choose to store these foods you must use them in your daily menus so you are familiar with their use and your family is familiar with their taste and texture.
If your crisis would be a natural disaster, these foods will be of little use. Foods such as these need one to four times the amount of water to food to reconstitute. In other words, one cup of food can take up to four cups of water to reconstitute. During a natural disaster, no matter the cause, there is rarely drinkable water. During the fires in San Diego two years ago one mountain community was without water for eight weeks.
I know some of these foods, especially the fruits, taste great when not re-hydrated. These are dangerous to eat in large amounts. In order for the body to digest these foods they must be reconstituted. If you do not do that before you eat them, your body will draw water from your cells to aid digestion and if you continue you will become dehydrated, leading to potentially serious health problems.
Working out our temporal salvation
"Self-reliance is a product of our work and under-girds all other welfare practices. It is an essential element in our spiritual as well as our temporal well-being. Regarding this principle, President Marion G. Romney has said: “Let us work for what we need. Let us be self-reliant and independent. Salvation can be obtained on no other principle. Salvation is an individual matter, and we must work out our own salvation in temporal as well as in spiritual things.” - (In Welfare Services Meeting Report, 2 Oct. 1976, p. 13.), “In the Lord’s Own Way” Elder Russell M. Nelson, Ensign, May 1986
"There is more salvation and security in wheat than in all the political schemes of the world". - Orson Hyde J.D. 2:207
With all the economic uncertainty in the world and the increase of disasters in diverse places we do not have to look far to recognize signs of peril. Now is the day to prepare. It is the time to begin, or to update and refine our efforts.
Aristotle said, “For where it is in our power to act it is also in our power not to act.” Let us not be found as the foolish virgins – out of oil, out of money, out of time. We have the power to act so let’s act today with whatever means and time we have to strengthen our households, and be better prepared.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Share the blessings...

The ward garden committee with the blessings of the Bishop is now prepared to increase the opportunity to receive even greater blessings from working in the ward garden.

Our goal is to increase the number of people experiencing the joy and blessings from participation in some phase of the garden project. We are asking now that each of you invite someone to “join you” at the garden, not just invite them to go there themselves. This would apply to those that you home or visit teach. It would involve those that might be a little less involved in church activity. It might be someone in your class, or quorum who has not had that experience yet. It could even be your own family.

This would apply to any and all phases of the experience. First and foremost we need a willing army of Weeders. They will need to join by those who harvest, process and distribute the produce.

Be creative in thinking of ways in which tie garden can bless your life and the live of those you love.

In addition to the blessings received from sharing the experience, we are now planning a party to reward those that have heeded the call.
Near the end of the season, we are planning on having a celebration to top all celebrations at the Gill homestead. There will be access to their infamous zip line. There will be a wiener roast and shmores around a campfire. Entertainment will be provided by the Majors family and cowboy poets. Hammocks will be supplied. Games can be played in the park area and in the large grassy area.

Your ticket to the festivities will include having taking someone new with you to the garden experience just once or attending garden activities yourself at least five different times. You are asked to develop your own time cards and have them signed off by a member of the Bishopric, ward leader or member of the garden committee. We know any one willing to work in the garden will be honest about time keeping

More information to follow in the Friendshipper, ward program and garden blog that is Produceaplenty.blog let’s get going. The work to do is there for you, put your shoulder to the wheel.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

June Friendshipper article for Ward garden

True to form, the garden is up and running now with a little warm weather. Stop by and see the hand of the Lord in action. At Lyman Jensen’s plot every thing that was planted is up and flourishing and competing intently with the evil forces of weeds and bugs. Chris Bailey’s corn patch has the first planting completed and awaits the second shortly.
The onions are responding well and the tips of green wave in the wind as the delicious bulbs beneath the surface increase in size and scrumpdidlialushness daily. The potatoes now resemble a thick dark green wave of undulating potato plants. The area between the rows have been tilled and hilled, while the area between plants are being choked by our life long nemesis, Captain field bind weed or morning glory. Pole beans, cucumbers, and winter squash all have broke the surface and are reaching for the sun literally. Transplanted tomatoes and pepper plants have withstood the initial transplant shock and are hitting their stride.

We are getting fairly good turn-outs for maintenance, but in order to keep ahead of things we need to seriously magnify our callings as stewards of the Paradise gardens. The following plan is in place to stay ahead of the count for the garden.
1. Regular scheduled weeding, planting, spraying and harvesting is regularly scheduled two times a week
A. The first is on Tuesday evenings at 7:00 PM
B. The second is every Saturday morning from 10:00 Am till 2:00 PM
2. Once you have learned the system, we encourage families and individuals to help out whenever it is convenient for them.

The ward leaders and the garden committee personally challenge every member in the ward to take advantage of this wonderful opportunity to experience the Pure love of Christ in Action through your efforts. We promise you that you will be filled with the spirit and will be a part of a great force for good in the community.

The Bishop has sent out a call for someone to volunteer as ward photographer to chronicle the events of the garden.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Community garden puts food on needy tables

Alison B. LawJune 13, 2010

Where is the Lord’s Garden planted and blossoming? In Paradise, of course.
The project of planting and harvesting a garden began last year when Noel Gill of the LDS fourth ward in Paradise wanted a way to help others. Gill said he saw many people who had lost their jobs and were in need of some extra help. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints encourages members to have gardens and to be prepared by having food storage, giving Gill the idea to start a garden for those in need. Gill, who was then the high priest group leader, approached the bishop about the idea and said it quickly went from something small to a large scale project.

Lyman Jensen and Chris Bailey each donated large portions of land totalling over two acres next to their homes for the gardens. Gill had been planning on lots of little gardens spread out, but was appreciative of the land donations. Gill continued to round up people to help, especially those who had some background in gardening. Assignments were made depending on people’s specialties, ranging from site coordinator, irrigation and soil specialists, work crew coordinators, historian, communication and publicity people.
Floyd Faucette took the reins as the soil and fertilizer specialist for the gardens. Faucette said that while the ground is good in Paradise they put together a program to bring in compost to add to the soil. Last fall several local dairies dumped manure in the gardens. Faucette also uses different organic fertilizers on the plants, depending on the vegetable. The ground must also be plowed and tilled to get it ready for planting. Specific members of the ward are assigned to deep plow or till as needed.
The rain this year postponed the planting a while, but a few weeks ago families, members of the ward and youth groups came out in full force to start planting the garden. Over 30 youth participated in the planting last Tuesday night. Steve Woolf, who plays a big part in the gardens, said he thinks the garden will still grow as well as last year.

The gardens are divided up with the plot by the Bailey’s home bearing corn and the land from the Jensen’s having onions, potatoes, pole beans, tomatoes, green peppers, squash and cucumbers. Gill said the corn gets planted three times throughout the summer and last year the crop yielded “oodles and oodles” of corn.
As the plants start to grow, so do the weeds. This is where the largest group of people are needed Gill said. Groups gather on Tuesday nights and Saturday mornings to pull weeds and tend to the garden. Once they have been taught what to do people, can come whenever they want. Gill said last year many people stopped by for a while before work to give of their time. Evelyn Nyman and her family spent some Family Home Evenings pulling weeds, although they were also taking care of their own garden.

Her children may have been reluctant at first to go help, but Nyman said once they got there they had fun.

“It’s fun to go out and help,” Nyman said.
New friendships were made as people weeded side by side last year Gill said and he hopes that continues this year. Over 70 people helped out last year and Gill hopes to have well over 100 this year. He and those he calls “the fearsome foursome,” including Woolf, Grant and Byron Rawlins and Dale Anderson spend at least five to six hours a week at the gardens, making sure things are kept up and teaching others as needed. The variety of people bring a variety of ideas of how to do things and it becomes a positive, informative process, Woolf said. Gill calls the gardens a “community spiritual experience,” hence the name “The Lord’s Garden.”
“It’s a great tool to get people out and get people acquainted with those they might not have known,” Woolf said.

Challenges hit the garden last year including water shortages, insects, wind damage, bad seed and lots of weeds. Gill compared them to the infestation of the crops by crickets in the days of the early Utah settlers. Despite these trials, the crops were plentiful and were able to help out many in need with fresh produce and canned, frozen or processed food. The group plans to continue to assist those in need with the harvest this fall. The women in the ward will teach one another canning and processing with the crops and share recipes using the fresh produce. Last year a dinner was held for the whole ward using some of the food from the garden or from the gardens of members. If all goes as planned, food will be distributed, recipes shared and a dinner to celebrate will follow this fall.

Ward Garden Update

Hallelujah.!!!!! Like Moses and the chosen children of God under Moses who rejoiced when the waters of the Red Sea briefly parted, we have been able to utilize brief respites between rain to plant the onions, potatoes, pole beans, first planting of corn and peppers, and winter squash. Weeders and are now urgently needed to maintain the progress we have made.
The ward has scheduled two regular times each week to have members of the garden committee available for assistance and instruction for that week’s assignments. They are Saturday mornings and early afternoons and Tuesday evening. Members of the garden committee will be available for assistance and instructions during those times. Brother and Sister Doney will coordinate the work for Saturday Morning and afternoons and the YM/YW leaders will coordinate the Tuesday evening assignments
Once you have mastered the system and understand what needs to be done members can arrange to visit the garden at their convenience to contribute to the cause. Many have chosen to stop by before work. Others have taken the entire family for a family home evening activity. Some retired individuals have found that times during the day work best for them. Every individual, family and organization is encouraged and challenged to join in

We would ask that you check in with the Doneys or the YM/YW leaders each week so that we can coordinate the efforts. Grant Rawlins is our garden water master and you may need to check the watering schedule before e you go as well.

Members are reminded that the garden as its own blog which can be accessed by typing in, produceaplenty.blog. We will try to have the latest information available. Please check in regularly to see the progress and the needs.

Remember the words of the inspiring hymn. Put your shoulder to the wheel. “ The Church has need of helping hands, and hearts that know and feel. The work to do is here for you; Put your shoulder to the wheel “The work to do is here for you, put your shoulder to the wheel, push along. We all have work; let no one shirk. Put your shoulder to the wheel