sweet smell of rain 20-11-11

נכתב ע"י maggie בתאריך 20 בנובמבר 2011 |

Shavoa Tov,

NOTICES:
1. I'm sorry about the shortages last week of cucumbers and tomatoes - this is the period when the fields are transitioning. There are major shortages in the market in general and their prices went up. It will probably stay this way several more weeks.
2. The summer fruits are disappearing: corn, mango, figs, grapes.... So please take into account that there is uncertainty about them. Winter crops that are soon to be among the regular products - cauliflower, broccoli are still not sure
3. This week we will distribute fresh ginger, it is not organic. It is grown on a bed of coconut fibers with fertilizer but without chemical spraying.

And now to the garden and our amazing nature.
It seems that we have danced, prayed and haven't committed unfounded hatred!! 

 

ריקוד גשם אורגני

 

 

What sweet rain -- now we are actually dancing through the puddles and between the muddy passages in the garden, rubbing our wet and frozen hands when picking and sorting the produce. Everything is clean, you can see the colors, hear the birds playing in the puddles and the frogs croacking. The plants are standing up tall and wide, and you can tell that in their "head" they are finaly breathing deeply and seeing a promising future for themselves.... No, I'm not imagining this!!!
If I had measured the size of the plants, broccoli, green onion, lettuce etc. before the rainy days, and then measured again now - I would find an amazing growth spree in the last days. You can really see it with your eyes. I feel like I could sit and watch the plants and actually see them grow.
Good luck to all of them, I hope it lasts.
And the rain gave us it's unique and wonderful scent!!! I think there is general agreement between humans and animals, especially earthworms and camels, that the smell after the first rain is wonderful!!
Even before the rain starts falling, we notice something more delicate in our noses. A scent of "it's gonna rain real soon". In this weather the air is typically full of electrical winds and even storms, that create a sourish bitterish scent, sometimes called "the smell of ozone".
The first rain, the drops catch on their way down whatever particulate is in the air, and bring it down to us. These particles have a smell and a color... how does your car look after the first rain? Not so clean, right? The rain returns to us whatever we polluted during the dry season.
The rain has an amazing characteristic of "catching" the existing scents and spreading them all over. So of course I'm not talking about the scent it spreads in the polluted areas, but in the clean natural areas - in natural woods, in the garden and even in the desert. But beyond "bringing to our noses" the scents that are already there, the rain enables another thing - something new. A scent we all long for. A smell that makes us open our nostrils and walk outside craving?
When the wet drops hit the earth they dissolve certain materials, and release them to the air and to our nose. This smell, the smell after the rain, has two main components - geosamin and petricur. Both created by micro-organisms and plants. The ABC of everyting!
Also we humans can smell the Geosamin, which means literally "the smell of earth".
It is an organic substance, secreted by different micro-organisms - in the earth it is bacteria and algae in water. These creatures, as part of their life cycle, secrete geosamin to the ground or the water. Beets and bottom fish naturally have a geosmin taste. When it rains on land or there are movements on the bottom soil in the water, geosmin is "sprayed" into the air and reaches our noses.
How do camels find water in the desert? This question occupied many researchers for a long time, and the answer was "right under our nose". Humans can smell geosamin at a concentration of one to a hundred billion (100,000,000,000). We want it that bad!! Why? For the camel, finding water in the desert is a matter of life or death. It does not actually smell water. rather it detects the the gentle fragrance of geosamin from a distance of 80 km!!! Also earth worms and other underground dwellers are attracted by this scent, and are more present there.
This is not for no reason. The bacteria need our help in their distribution, and want us to mix, drink and eat them. Botanists found cactus flowers in the amazons that contain geosamin and thereby attract bugs looking for water. The bugs pollinate and fertilize the flowers on their way. The bacteria in charge of producing this wonderful smell of rain, or smell of earth, are the actinocytes ( or the Streptomyces to be accurate) which is a very important family in the production of antibiotics, anticarcinogens, antifungals and anti inflammatories. These are produced from natural sources, not synthesized in a lab. Exactly what we want to get during the winter. Remember this when you meet more mud in our weekly boxes. It is earth. It is not dirt - like my mom used to tell me.
By the way, be aware that pharmaceutical companies, water companies and wine producers find ways to remove the geosamin from the water, as they are not satisfied with their products smelling like earth.
The second component of this wonderful smell is produced by plants that secrete aromatic oils that have accumulated on and in the ground, rocks and stones in dry periods. When the humidity increases and especially when it rains, they are released to the air and reach our nose. This component received a very special name from I.J. Bear and R.G. Thomas, two Australian researchers from the sixties. They called it petricur. The name is composed from two greek words, Petri=rock, icur=the fluid (like the essence of life or blood) in the veins of the gods. Wow!
This oil is used in the perfume industry.
Bear and Thomas wanted to explain the fast growth in desert areas after a short rain. They claimed that this oily compound induces germination, but they found the exact opposite. The petricur that is released after a short rain inhibits germination and prevents the seed from beginning its life without enough water around. The water is still deep underground, so the seeds' newly grown roots will not be able to reach the water, and the seed will die. A stringer rain may flush away the petricur and allow germination, the seed will sprout and since there was a strong rain there will still be planty of water in the ground to feed the little seed until it is strong enough to reach deeper water.
What nature we have! A reason for everything.
Have a week that looks good, sounds good and smells good
Warm inside and wet outside
Yours,
Maggie and the garden & market crew .


And this week's expectation list:
Please remember that you may always make changes to your boxes by adding vegetables, sprouts, fruit, and dry produce. Please use our on-line ordering system to make these changes.
You may read about any of the listed vegetables by clicking its name on the list on the left side of the web page. If there are any changes (nature being nature), you may find out about them via this link on the day of delivery.
Regular boxes:
romaine lettuce
dill
celery
kohlrabi
Fennel
apice of a large squash
red peppers
tomatoes and cucumbers - could be replaced by sweet potatoes and avocado if they are not available


Large boxes also get:
Cilantro
Parsley
Sweet Potatoes
Onions

 

Fruit boxes also get:
small but very tasty apples
citrus fruits