The combination of the All-Hands Gathering and being snowed-in has made me really excited about spring.  I had a great time at the gathering and got some good ideas for this season, I just can’t wait to get started!

ASPI hosts a summer youth intern program for local high school students to learn about gardening and marketing. This summer we will be focusing on value-added products, so I’ve been doing lots of research for value-added products that we can make this summer from ASPI’s garden. I’ve researched recipes for herbal salves, herbal teas, and spice mixes. I think we’re also going to make some breads (my zucchini bread did pretty well last year at the market) and maybe some ready recipes, like a vegetable stir fry mix. Someone at the gathering mentioned including recipes with your products at the farmers market, and I think that would be great to include with some of these vegetables and herbs that some people don’t know what to do with. Figuring out what we’re going to make has led to planning out the garden and deciding what plants we need and how much.

For the next two weeks ASPI will be hosting service learners from three colleges. We can’t wait to put them to work at the office, at the nature center, and in the garden! We’re going to get started in the garden, plant in the high tunnel, and getting some seeds started in our little greenhouse.

After lots of Google-ing and Pinterest-ing, I found some recipes for a variety of value-added products that I hope to test out soon to make sure they’ll be good for our interns this summer. Here is some of what me and Suzi found:

Spring can’t come soon enough!