April and May Classes and Workshops 2018

Take a good gander at our class and workshops scheduled for this spring. We have classes on fruit trees, seeds, cover crops, a series for health and healing through Ayurvedic teachings and more. We are still working on organizing a date for our perennial plant swap as well as a new date for our postponed (due to April blizzard) “Biodiversity in Your Backyard” event so stay tuned. Most classes are low-cost or free. Scholarships always available so please contact us and ask! Reach out to our Education Coordinator: Andrea.e@tinydiner.com

APRIL CLASSES and WORKSHOPS

Biodiverse Garden Planning 

Date: Thursday April 12th

Time: 6-7pm

Cost: $5-10

Min/Max Students: No min/max student

You can fit a lot in a little space with some basic guidelines for intensive planting in your garden. Come prepared with questions and ideas to start a plan in this 1 hour long workshop. 

Instructor Background: Koby Jeschkeit-Hagen, TD Garden and Market Adviser, designed and installed the TD Gardens since the beginning. With experience in rural and urban permaculture designs, and in farm production, she melds function with aesthetic and edible integrity. For more info, contact: koby@tinydiner.com.

 

Biodiversity in Your Backyard! Seed, Scion and Info Share

Date: Sunday April 15th

Time: 11-2

Cost: Free

Location: Sibley Recreation Center

Do you want to learn how to create a resilient, biodiverse wonderland in your neighborhood? Join us for an afternoon of hands-on booths and fun activities for the whole family! We’ll have local growers share how to save, share and spread biodiverse flowers and foods through seed, scion and good growing techniques. If you need a good starting point or a refresher, check out our resource fair of local organizations and businesses that can answer questions or help you get started on a project.

  • Introduction to seed stewardship & increasing biodiversity in your community by Koby of Seed Sages
  • Watch a grafting demonstration of how to use scion wood to create low cost, resilient fruit trees & also grow perennial foods from cuttings w/ Cody from Land by Hand
  • Make a wildflower seed ball to bio-charge your neighborhood
  • Talk with neighborhood organizations that can help get you started on a project

A HUGE thank you to  Prairie Moon Nursery, High Mowing Organic Seeds, Seed Savers Exchange, Southern Exposure Seed Exchange and Seed Sages for their generous donations and support for this event.

This is a free event! All are welcome.

 

Ayurveda For Spring

Date: Thursday April 19th

Time: 10:30-12

Cost: $10

Min/Max students: 10 min/30 max

Ayurveda is a traditional Indian medicine that has been practiced for thousands of years. It is believed in Ayurveda that different energies go through various changes as the season transitions. Spring is a Kapha dosha season where this energy naturally starts increasing in the body. During this time of transtion, people can suffer from diseases like congestion, cold, cough, and allergies.This talk will be focused on how to deal with the increased kapha during transition from summer to spring and how to stay symptom free with simple home remedies.

Instructor Background: Dr. Vanashree Gadam loves Ayurveda deeply and wants to globalize it so that people all over the world can benefit from this amazing ancient science. Dr Vanashree has a Bachelor of Ayurvedic Medicine and Surgery from India. She also has special training in Nadi Pariksa, a technique used to diagnose disease by reading an individual’s pulse. This class is presented by Minnesota Ayurveda Association and Svasti Yoga.

 

The Art of Growing Organic Fruit Class: Grafting

Date: Sunday April 22nd

Time: 2-4

Cost: $20 drop-in

Min/Max Students: 25

Join us for a workshop series exploring the cultivation of fruit trees, shrubs & other perennial edibles for our Northern climate. In this class you will learn the art & importance of grafting fruit trees and through hands-on experience. Optional $10 materials fee includes all grafting materials to take your own grafted & potted fruit tree home! This class is can be taken as a series or as individual classes. Workshops in this series will focus on Pruning (3/22), Grafting (4/15), Planting (5/6), Design (7/15), Organic Pest/Disease Management (7/15), Harvest (9/9) & more. ‘As they say, the best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago, the next best time is right now!’

Instructor Background: Cody Mastel is motivated by a constant fire of acquiring, mastering, & sharing skills that inspire others to learn through self-guided, hands-on experience. He helps facilitate learning throughout the Upper Midwest with organizations like Tiny Diner, MCTC, MPLS Community Ed & the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum. Cody is owner of Land by Hand and co-founder of Open Hearth Permaculture Education. He graduated from the U of MN College of Design, and is a certified Permaculture Designer & Educator.

 

May CLASSES and WORKSHOPS

 

The Art of Growing Organic Fruit: Planting and Guild Design

Date: Sunday May 6th

Time: 2-4

Cost: $100 series/$20 drop-in

Min/Max students: none

Join us for a workshop series exploring the cultivation of fruit trees, shrubs & other perennial edibles for our Northern climate. In this class you will learn the art of planting trees & shrubs to thrive within a guild community of beneficial plants & fungi! We will discuss integrating flowers, herbs, groundcovers, vines, edible mushrooms & more! This class is can be taken as a series or as individual classes. Workshops in this series will focus on Pruning (3/22), Grafting (4/15), Planting (5/6), Design (7/15), Organic Pest/Disease Management (7/15), Harvest (9/9) & more. ‘As they say, the best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago, the next best time is right now!’

Instructor Background: Cody Mastel is motivated by a constant fire of acquiring, mastering, & sharing skills that inspire others to learn through self-guided, hands-on experience. He helps facilitate learning throughout the Upper Midwest with organizations like Tiny Diner, MCTC, MPLS Community Ed & the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum. Cody is owner of Land by Hand and co-founder of Open Hearth Permaculture Education. He graduated from the U of MN College of Design, and is a certified Permaculture Designer & Educator.

 

Cover Crops for Urban Gardeners

Date: Thursday May 10th

Time: 7-8

Cost: $10 sliding scale

Min/Max: 5 min/12 max

Cover crops or green manure is an age old agriculture technique and there is good reason for this. This class will focus on basics of soil heath, case studies of cover crops, sourcing and management. Nick will also talk about cover cropping can work with other backyard carbon and poultry systems. You will leave feeling confident on how to integrate and manage cover crops into your garden for the longterm benefit of soil health. 

Instructor Background: Nick owes and operates Thrive Chef Works LLC, a personal chef and catering company. Next to cooking good food, growing good food is Nick’s equally vital passion. He sees growing healthy people as a parallel to growing healthy soil. His formal experience as a grower includes 3 years as market garden manager for former St. Paul urban Agriculture non-profit, Farm in the City, a summer teaching gardening classes for Gardening Matters, and a summer doing farm work in Italy through WWOOF. Nick also has maintained a local garden or two each year for the last 20 years. He regenerated and expanded a community orchard for Omega One ltd, a Minneapolis intentional community. Nick is a co-founder of the green space minded Mixed Precipitation Theatre Collaborative and has acted as the lead chef since its inception 10 years ago.

 

Backyard Seed Saving I: Save Biodiversity in Your Backyard

Date: Saturday May 12th

Time: 2-3

Cost: $5-10

Min/Max Students: 4 min.

Learn how you can save and pass on agricultural biodiversity in your home and community this season. It can be easy with a few tips!

Instructor Background: Koby Jeschkeit-Hagen is the founder of Seed Sages, a local seed saving organization that provides trainings, consultations, and education.  Seed stewardship and biodiversity conservation is a driving force behind her work. She has worked at Emandal Farm, JD Rivers Children’s Garden, Seed Savers Exchange, Seeds of Change, and Ecology Action. Plus, she was the Tiny Diner Urban Farm Manager, Gardener and Program Coordinator for 4 years. She also has a masters in Community and Regional Planning and is a certified permaculture designer and teacher. She draws on many approaches to share diverse seed saving, farming and community-building methods.

 

Ayurveda for Stress and Vitality

Date: Saturday May 19th

Time: 2:30-4

Cost: $10/scholarships available

The ancient Indian medicine called Ayurveda teaches mind and body are deeply connected and imbalance in either one can affect each other on very subtle level. In this class, you will learn about the amazing techniques in Ayurveda to cope with stress and lead a healthy happy life. This talk will focus on how ayurveda looks at stress and how to balance sattva, rajas, and tamas in your mind. A special section on how to improve your vitality will be discussed in this talk too. Come and learn how to keep mind and body in balance and improve your vitality. Class fee is $10. Scholarships are also available! RSVPs required. Email andrea.e@tinydiner to RSVP or with questions.

Instructor Background: Dr. Vanashree Gadam loves Ayurveda deeply and wants to globalize it so that people all over the world can benefit from this amazing ancient science. Dr Vanashree has a Bachelor of Ayurvedic Medicine and Surgery from India, a five and a half year course. She also has special training in Nadi Pariksa, a technique used to diagnose disease by reading an individual’s pulse. This class is presented by Minnesota Ayurveda Association and Svasti Yoga.

 

Service Berry Orchard Walk

Date: Thursday May 24th

Time: 1-2

Cost: Free!

Interested in growing more fruit in your yard? Come learn about Service Berries (also know as June Berries) in this informal lunch hour class. We’ll talk about ideal spaces to grow them, best varieties, and see examples of different bush and tree varieties in the Tiny Diner garden. We’ll also have plenty of samples for your to try! All your Service/June Berry questions will be answered. This is a kid friendly event.

Instructors’ Background: Neal Baxter has been the coordinator of Bancroft-Meridian Garden for many years and is a board member on the neighborhood council.

Andrea Eger is the Education and Market Coordinator at Tiny Diner and an organic farmer for the past 5 years. She first learned about permaculture in 2008 while working at a women’s collective farm in Guatemala and was instantly hooked. Since then, she has become a certified permaculture designer and has used her skills to design sustainable and resilient farming systems and businesses.

People Power: Meet TD Front of House Manager Bailey Morrison

Our Tiny Diner is powered by wonderful people like Bailey Morrison. She is the Tiny Diner’s Supervisor. She supports staff and ensures restaurant is functioning smoothly. Not only does she ensure things are going well inside the restaurant, she also handles social media messaging, donation requests, and provides additional assistance for events on-site like the Tiny Diner Famers’ Market and out Annual Tomato Tasting.

When I asked her what she loves about her job, she said, “Everyone here is so awesome. They are all so hard-working and dedicated to creating a lovely work environment. They are what really make this place so special…I love working here in the summers especially. I am surrounded by such a beautiful garden and bees, it makes the job so rewarding.” When Bailey is not having a summer blast at the Tiny Diner, you can find her biking, doing her own home cooking, and reading.

This April marks her 1-year anniversary with us at the Tiny Diner. Thank you for all of your energy, kindness, and organization Bailey!

 

Event preview: “Biodiversity in Your Backyard: Seed, Scion and Info Share” April 15th, 2018

You may have seen posters and online banners about our event, “Biodiversity in Your Backyard,” and wondered what is this all about? The Tiny Diner has partnered up with Land By Hand, Seed Sages, Urban Forage, and Powderhorn Park Neighborhood Association for this spring kick-off event to connect people with more ways to increase biodiversity at home, at school, at work – everywhere!

We asked partnering organizations to come and/or send information to this event for Twin Cities residents to increase awareness of plant, bird, and insect biodiversity. Not only will we have a seed share, organized by Seed Sages, where you can pick up seeds for this season but we will also scion wood and demonstrations from Land By Hand. Scion wood from fruit and nut trees of various types will help you start perennial edibles in your yard at an affordable price. We will have a seed bomb kids’ activity too. There will be other community organizations there like Urban Forage and Community Solar to discuss ways we can foster more fruit growth and habitat conservation through small-scale production practices and wise energy use.

Adaptive Seeds is one of several seed companies that donated seed and resources to this event. To find what kind of seeds were donated, come to the event!

 

The format for the event is drop-in/open house style. If you come promptly at 11am, you can hear Seed Sages owner and Tiny Diner’s Farm, Market and Garden Advisor Koby Jeschkeit-Hagen give a welcome greeting and walk through the steps to have a meaningful seed share with each other. This is a free event. Any donations will go to cover costs of renting the space and towards future free events like this one. Note that the location of the event has changed to Sibley Park building at 1900 East 40th Street, Minneapolis.* We hope that everyone can join us despite the snowy forecast. It will be a warm, exciting space to gather materials and generate ideas together.

 

Date: Sunday April 15th, 2018

Time: 11am-2pm

Schedule:

11:00 am Welcome Biodiversity!

11:15-2pm Seed and Scion Share, Seed Bomb Activity and Resource Tables

Cost: Free

Location: Sibley Recreation Center

 

 

*We have to give a shout-out to Jotika Weitz-Handy, Recreation Director at the Sibley Recreation Center in Minneapolis, and Allyssa at Sibley Rec. They have been great to work with for space rental. We offer many thanks to her and the Sibley Rec staff for their help!

Tiny Diner Featured in Midwest Living Article!

This Sunday after being awoken an hour earlier due to the dreaded Daylight Savings Time, I decided to cheer myself up with breakfast at Tiny Diner. Turns out it was exactly what I needed to get out of my sleepy funk. Brunch at Tiny Diner was lively, the food was delicious (as always), and the atmosphere was warm. Even though there was a wait for tables, no one seemed to mind. It was the best example of what a diner should be. It turns out that I’m not the only one noticing what a great thing we have going on at Tiny Diner. This month we are so excited to be featured in Midwest Living’s article “Midwest Diners That Do it Right.” Check out the article and then come and tell us what you think over some happy hour drinks and delicious, locally sourced food!

Staff Highlight: Andrea Eger, Education and Farmers Market Coordinator

We have a lot of talented and multifaceted folks here that help the Tiny Diner operate all of its endeavors. From the kitchen to the dining patio, from the garden to the Farmer’s Market, we have a lot of coordination that takes place in a very small space. In each of our newsletters this season we aim to highlight at least one of these people if not more, so we can give thanks as well as highlight the kinds of human energy it takes to keep healthy places going.

Andrea Eger in her past life processing eggplant for seed.

For this month’s issue we have chosen Andrea Eger. Last year, Andrea Eger started out as the Tiny Diner Education Coordinator and Garden Assistant. This spring, she is taking on another role to manage our Tiny Diner Farmer’s Market. With her new title, “Education and Farmers’ Market Coordinator”, means that she is now responsible for planning and implementing all of our workshops, class series, events and Farmers’ Markets at the Tiny Diner. She has the wherewithal to do so too with plenty of experience with farming, international farm coops, beekeeping, teaching classes, assistance with farmers markets in the Twin Cities and beyond.

As we speak she is finalizing the Tiny Diner workshop calendar, preparing for upcoming April events, and organizing vendors for the Farmers’ Markets. The work is never really done with this position so if you see her, give her a joyful wave and let her know you appreciate all the behind-the-scenes tasks it takes to offer event space as well as high-quality workshops. If you would like to find out more about what Andrea does (here is her TD profile) or if you would like to teach a class or workshop, contact her at andrea.e@tinydiner.com.

Call for Farmers’ Market Vendors!

Come sell your produce market at our NEW and IMPROVED Tiny Diner Farmers’ Market this season. We have one of the most affordable markets in the Twin Cities with flexibility that will leave you with less stress during your harvest season. For more information and/or to sign-up fill out this form ASAP. We have limited spaces and would love to have you!

If you have any questions or concerns, send your emails to our Education and Market Coordinator, Andrea Eger: andrea.e@tinydiner.com.

 

 

NEW and IMPROVED: Tiny Diner Farmers’ Market 2018

For the past four years, our Tiny Diner Farmers’ Market has slowly built a loyal following of friendly neighbors, unique small-scale vendors and local artists. For 2018, we are still dedicated to providing a space at the Tiny Diner to access healthy local produce and value-added products. In addition to vendor space, our market will continue to foster social space with music and activities with a NEW and IMPROVED twist.

Interactive Activities for ALL at Each Market

Did you enjoy the Goat Day last year? How about Kids’ Karaoke or the Water-Color Painting Drop-in booth? This year our market will have even more activities and skill-building classes offered at each market.

Shorter Season Focused on High Harvest

Our market will be an access point during the high harvest cycle of the farming world. This focus allows us to design amazing events and keep vendors and neighbors happy with a full lot. It will run every Thursday from August 2nd – September 27th, from 5-9pm.

Affordable Drop-in Days for Vendors

With our market being only 9 days this season, vendors can sign-up for the whole time without full-season exhaustion and pressure. Or sign-up for drop-in days. Whichever avenue they pick, our vendor fees are some of the most affordable in the Twin Cities so you can’t go wrong!

If you know a vendor or artist, pass this new and improved market update along and have them sign-up for the market here.

Introducing the Tiny Diner’s Art of Growing Organic Fruit Series

There is no better way to welcome spring and get a jump start on food growing than diving into fruit tree maintenance and care. We are hosting more class series this year in order to advance connectivity and skill sets over the course of the season. Our fruit tree series, “The Art of Growing Organic Fruit,” is a 6-part seasonal workshop series exploring the cultivation of fruit trees, shrubs & other perennial edibles for our Northern climate. Each workshop in the series will focus on building skills to tend our plants with a Permaculture approach including pruning, propagation, grafting, planting, design, maintenance, organic pest/disease management, harvest, crop swaps, winter clean-up & more.

The first class of the series kicks off this Sunday March 11th from 2-4pm, “Dormant Pruning and Plant Propagation.” In this class you will learn the art of pruning & also the magic of multiplying your plants by taking dormant hardwood cuttings from many incredible edible & medicinal varieties like currants, elderberry, grapes, roses and others. We will send every participant home with cuttings of their own to get started.

If you cannot make the first class but want to come future class dates mark these on your calendar: 4/22, 5/6, 7/15, 8/5 and 9/9 from 2-4pm in the Tiny Diner garden. Sign up for all the classes with our series discount price or just sign up for one. Spaces are limited. Sign up on our website here.

Our Tiny Diner gardener Cody Master will be leading this series. He has a passion for fruity perennials and is more than happy to share his knowledge with you. Sign up for the whole series for a discount or sign-up for just one. Space and supplies are limited so RSVP today!

**Everyone welcome regardless of ability to pay! Scholarships available. Email andrea.e@tinydiner.com for more information**

How to make terrible cookies

It is cold outside. I wanted to make chocolate chip cookies. I had all the good, organic, whole ingredients except for chocolate chips. How could I forget those delicious nibs? I was too lazy to go out into the tundra and risk driving on ice to pick some up at the store 10 miles away. So I decided to substitute the only chocolate sweetness I had in in the cupboard. I put in a cup of Nutella, the “more than chocolate and hazelnut” spread. And boy was it a mistake.

Nutella keeps so long because it is full of palm oil and other bad ingredients. After I added Nutella to the recipe, my cookies turned into dry rocks, barely edible. When the family decided to call them biscuits to help our minds palletize them to eat, it did not help edibility. And when I tried to imbibe some moisture in a biscuit by placing it in a glass of whole milk for 10 minutes, it did nothing but stay dry – bone dry.

Learning lesson #2,345: Never substitute Nutella for anything when making dessert. In fact, don’t even buy it. While some French people are still crazy about it despite having a rich heritage of investing in pleasurable AND healthy foods, we should take a close look. It has been linked to high rates of cancer. Next time, I will not be so lazy. I will use high-quality ingredients and stop gambling with taste and health. Especially when it comes to dessert.

 

Photo from Reddit.

 

 

Time to plan your garden for the 2018 season!

Even though we have frozen ground and cold temperatures here in Minnesota, most people who grow food in the summer, whether they are gardeners or farmers, do not have a winter vacation. When they are not planting, weeding, harvesting and marketing their produce, they are evaluating their last season, current budget and making plans for the upcoming season. January is a very busy preparations time for many growers here in our cold climate.

Sun Hemp seed (not related to hemp at all) is a great annual flower that acts as a quick-growing living much and is a great source of beauty and food for pollinators!

If you are growing in a container, backyard or a farm plot, now is the time to start thinking about what you would like to grow. Some herbs and vegetable crops require indoor transplanting in February and March (tomatoes, peppers, onions, etc.) while some like to be directly sown in the ground (cilantro, dill, beans, lettuce, etc). Here is a basic transplanting and seeding chart for Minnesota that can help you figure out when to grow what in terms of garden crops.

Finding good seed varieties (crops) that meet your needs is part of having a good plan for the season. There are plenty of good organic seed companies that you can buy seed from (see below). Also look for local seed swaps in your neighborhood to find a variety of free seeds available from your neighbors. Good sources for seeds and plants include:

Adaptive Seeds

Eggplant Farm Supply (Saint Paul, MN)

Kitazawa Seed Company

Mother Earth Gardens (Minneapolis, MN)

Native SEED/Search

Plum Creek Seeds (Wisconsin)

Resilient Seeds

Seed Savers Exchange

Uprising Seeds

Wild Garden Seed

Once you have your crops picked out, spend a few hours sketching out where your crops will go. If you are growing in a small

space or in containers, figure out if your plants need full sun or not. Do you plants need a trellis (peas, pole beans, cucumbers, etc.)? If you are growing in a small yard or farm, figure out where your good soil resides and where the sun flows. Map your plantings according to the dimensions you have to grow on. Most of the time, people plant either too little and weeds take over their gardens. Or they plant too much and their gardens turn into a jungle, unmanageable. Follow the planting instructions on seed packets in order to being to understand proper spacing. To help guide larger garden designs, mapping with these free online design programs can help too.

In the spring, we will have a few rooftop container planting classes at the Tiny Diner (April and May) to show direct-seeding methods in the garden as well as healthy transplanting methods. Make sure to sign up for our newsletter to get these classes on your calendar!

Hearty zinnias
Striped slicer cucumbers called “Painted Serpents”.