Culinary Herbs of the World

August 2018

HSA DVU member Caren White presented "Culinary Herbs of the World" at the H-J Farmstead on Sunday, August 5, at 2 pm, followed by a visit of the attendees to the DVU-HSA International Culinary Herb Garden after her talk. She was sponsored by the Northeast Organic Farming Association of NJ (NOFA).

Helen Hamilton Receives HSA Certificate of Achievement

June 2018

In June of 2018, our own Helen Hamilton traveled to the NorthEast District Herb Society of America meeting in Tarrytown NY to receive the HSA Certificate of Achievement for all her many herbal activities. This award was developed in 1976 by the Herb Society of America to honor those people, members of Herb Society or not, who have made significant contributions in various ways to the work of The Society or the world of herbs. Helen has been an active member of the Delaware Valley Unit of the Herb Society of America for many years and has served the group in multiple ways. She currently serves in the position of Program Chair for the unit and has coordinated the annual Herb Symposium in addition to many programs for the unit as well as the public. Until the advent of email, Helen authored and distributed a printed monthly newsletter. For a time she edited the national HSA Newsletter. She has been instrumental in developing our email connections and our HSA connections, providing publicity for all our events.

While the HSA-DVU was at our prior location, Helen actively gardened in one of the two industrial gardens in the US, the other one being at the National Herb Garden in Washington DC Most recently she maintained the India section of our International Culinary Garden. Helen has held our unit together through good times and bad. SHe has attended and actively participated in many District and National Herb Society events, meetings and symposia. She curates a garden of plants of the Bible near her residence in Princeton. Congratulations, Helen!! We are so proud of you!

A WWOOF Experience

April 2016

In the Fall one of our members, Pat Beckman, participated in a WWOOFING experience in Denmark. The program was founded in 1971 in England to encourage urban dwellers with access to the countryside while supporting the organic movements. WWOOF originally stood for Willing Workers On Organic Farms. By 2000 the program had been so successful that the acronym was changed to Worldwide Opportunities on Organic Farms. Volunteers must first choose what country they would like to visit and volunteer in. They sign up for their desired country on the WWOOF website. After signing up volunteers have access to a list of farms located in their country of choice. From this point it is up to the volunteer to review the farm profiles to determine the best match and contact their desired farms and arrange the dates and duration of their stay. The duration of a volunteer's stay can range from days to months, but is typically at least one to two weeks. Volunteers can expect to work for 4-6 hours a day for a full day's food and accommodation. A volunteer could be asked to help with a variety of tasks, including: sowing seed, making compost, gardening, planting, cutting wood, weeding, harvesting, packing, milking, feeding, fencing, making mud-bricks, wine making, cheese making and bread baking. WWOOF promotes participation as a way to experience firsthand a local culture, customs, and nature through farming.

Pat selected Denmark because her grandfather was Danish and she had been to school there. To appreciate how the WWOOF program worked, Pat volunteered at WWOOF farm in Frenchtown, N.J. before going to Denmark where she was for two months. In Denmark there were three to four workers on the 80 acres farm where she volunteered. They fed the livestock, planted and harvested vegetables and even prepared food for tourists to the farm. Pat found the WWOOF program a fascinating and rewarding experience.

Farm and out buildings Potato harvesting Onions drying

Delaware Valley Unit Member Wins Best in Show

November 2015

Grace Majorossy a young member of the Delaware Valley Unit won a Best in Show for her herb garden called: "Parsley, Sage, Rosemary and Thyme". This was at the Hunterdon County 4H and Agricultural Fair held in Ringoes in August. Grace has been entering her horticulture for at least three years. She has had an interest in growing things for many years and decided she wanted to be a farmer. Her family has had a little pop up green house for 2-3 years and she has grown plants for her friend's gardens in there, as well as for her own family. The teacher at her polytech class has put her in charge of the kitchen garden, where she plants donated and homegrown plants with her fellow students and afterwards they cook with the vegetables and herbs. She has enjoyed learning about herbs and is developing a special interest in culinary herbs.

The herb display is Grace's award winning entry.