#SoCalidad - An Urban Farming Lifestyle Blog

Why Sprouts?

Growing sprouts is an excellent introduction to growing food for those new to Urban farming. Sprouts can be grown year-round, indoors, using minimal space. Sprouting seeds, bean & nuts at home requires only minutes of your time per day and is super inexpensive. Sprouts are nutrient rich, protein sources that can be easily grown without light and soil. If rejuvenating weight loss is your goal, sprouts are the clean, fat-free, almost instantly absorbed protein you want.



It all begins with the seeds.

Seeds carry within them everything required to sustain life. When seeds get air, water and temperature to their liking, they germinate and as they sprout a flow of energy or life-force is released. You can think of sprouts as baby plants, bursting forth with new life.  Eating sprouts is ideal for optimal health as they contain proteins, vitamins, minerals & enzymes at a level greater than at any other point in a plant's development. Sprouts personify the statement,

"It's not the food in your life,

it's the life in your food."


Let's Get Sprouting.

Believe it our not, the best place for you to grow your sprouts is right in your kitchen.  Simply purchase a pound of red or green Lentils or Mung beans. You'll find them in packages in your supermarket or in bulk at your favorite natural food store. Make sure your beans are fresh, raw and organic and avoid any that are discolored or cracked. Measure a cup, wash them thoroughly with filtered water and then soak them over night in a jar or bowl. Drain them in your colander and rinse them well. Now leave them right in the colander, on your kitchen counter, spreading them out a little so they don't clump together. You can cover them with a plate or paper towel to keep them clean and debris free while the magic happens.

Watch what happens.

In only a few hours to just about a day, Lentils and Mung beans will start to grow little tails. As they begin to sprout, rinse them occasionally, and you'll see a miniature, kitchen garden of tiny, power packed, living plants emerge. When most of the tails are just barely visible, give your sprouts one more rinsing and place them in an airtight container lined with a paper towel.  Store them in your fridge and they'll continue to sprout more slowly. After 3 or 4 days sprouts are ready to eat.



Green lentils about 36 hours into sprout

Garden Guide

Insightful tips for Urban Farmers

Help! What's Eating My Squash Plants

Squash Bug

Well known and widely distributed in North America, the squash bug (Anasa tristis) is a potential problem on all vegetable crops in the cucurbit family. They are often found in large numbers and tend to congregate in clusters on leaves, vines and fruits. Injury is caused by both nymphs and adults sucking sap from the foliage and vines of squash, pumpkins, cucumbers and other closely related plants. As they feed, they inject a toxic substance that causes host plants to wilt. When feeding is severe the leaves become black and crisp and die back. This condition is often referred to as “anasa wilt” which closely resembles bacterial wilt, a true plant disease. Smaller plants may be killed, while larger plants often recover once feeding stops. Heavy infestations may prevent fruit from forming.  Adults (5/8 inch long) are dark brown or gray in color which keeps them well camouflaged around plants. Known as true bugs, they have a hard shell with a long shield-like shape, two pairs of wings, and sucking mouthparts that originate from the tips of their head. Spider-like nymphs (1/10 inch long) are voracious and feed together in clusters or groups. When young they are whitish green or gray in color with red heads, legs and antennae. As they mature, they become grayish-white with dark legs.

Note: Squash bugs give off an unpleasant odor in large numbers or when crushed.

Life Cycle

Adults overwinter and seek shelter under dead leaves, vines, rocks and other garden debris. As temperatures begin to warm in the spring (late May and early June), squash bugs emerge and fly into gardens where they feed and mate. Egg laying soon begins and continues until midsummer with females depositing small brown eggs usually on the undersides of leaves. Eggs hatch in one to two weeks and the young nymphs disperse quickly to feed. Nymphs pass through 5 instars requiring up to 6 weeks to develop into adults. There is typically one generation per year.

Note: Because of the long egg laying period, all stages of this garden pest occur throughout the summer.

Squash Bug Control

  • Plant resistant varieties when available.
  • If only a few plants are affected, handpick all stages from the undersides of leaves.
  • Place boards or shingles on the ground near host plants. Used as a nighttime shelter, they make excellent traps for morning collecting.
  • Floating row covers are extremely effective when placed on seedlings and left in place until plants are old enough to tolerate damage.
  • Diatomaceous earth, a natural pesticide made from the fossilized shells of one-celled organisms called diatoms, is abrasive to many insects and can be dusted over plants to reduce numbers.
  • If pest levels become intolerable, spot treat with an organic insecticide.
  • Roto-till or dispose of infested crop remnants shortly after harvest to reduce overwintering adults.

Tip: Researchers at Iowa State University found that mulching with newspaper and hay, before putting tightly secured row covers over gardens, reduced both weeds and pest numbers.


Info taken from: http://www.planetnatural.com/pest-problem-solver/garden-pests/squash-bug-control/



Eat to Live

Healthy Recipes & More

Got Juice ?

Why Juice?

Juicing is a great way to use excess produce from your garden when you can't possibly eat it all. It is also a great way to get a full serving of fruit and vegetables every day.

Is juice the same thing as a smoothie?

No, these are two very different things. They're both very healthy for you, and one isn't better than the other, necessarily.

A smoothie is made in a blender. It's blended, not juiced. With a smoothie, you retain the pulp (which is insoluble fiber).

Juice is juiced with a juicer. Juicers 'juice' your produce and separate the pulp (the insoluble fiber) from it. You discard the pulp and drink the juice. You still get fiber in the form of soluble fiber. I know, crazy, right?

"My friend said juicing isn't healthy because you don't get any fiber."

Fiber is what helps move food through the digestive system, but it's not digested. There's two types of fiber: 'soluble' and 'insoluble'. When you juice, the pulp you see in the 'pulp bin' is mostly the insoluble fiber. You're still getting plenty of soluble fiber in your juice.

Soluble fiber facts

Soluble fiber will make it into your juice. Soluble fiber is 'soluble' in water. Soluble fiber (like gums and pectins) will partially dissolve in water and form a type of gel. Soluble fiber absorbs digestive bile made by cholesterol, which creates even more digestive bile, which then helps to lower LDL (bad) cholesterol. Soluble fiber also can help moderate your blood glucose levels because it helps sugar to be more slowly absorbed, which is why some diabetics report juicing to be helpful to them.

We personally love the consistency and the great flavors we can make with juice. We can put weird things like sweet potatoes in our juicers and create a delicious dessert-like juice, but we sometimes feel a bit limited with flavors in our smoothies.

For great juice recipes visit:






Keep Current

News & Events

King's Apron Live Cooking Demo

Sunday, July 24th, 2016

 from 2pm-5pm at Metropolitan Library, Atlanta


Calidad will be presenting tons of information on "The Garden" alongside King's Apron who will be facilitating a *free "Live Food Demonstration infused Workshop" and discussing the health benefits of eating a plant based diet consisting of highly alkaline Fruit + Vegetables + Herbs.


We will be preparing *raw "Zucchini Lasagna w/ Garden Herb Cashew Cheese & Spicy Marinara". This a Farm-to-Table demonstration.

Come! Have Fun! Get Involved! Be Inspired ???


Metropolitan Library
1332 Metropolitan Parkway
Atlanta, GA 30310

#kingsapron #afpls #calidad #atlanta #library #food #farm #eatclean #hiphop #education #organizer #demo #free #raw #green #garden #farm #black #chef #bvsga #life #rbgfitclub #vegan #veganfoodshare #garden #veganfood #zulu #vegansofig #plantbased #alkaline #diet




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