THE GARDEN STORY
Here at Retail Construction Services, Inc., we are dedicated to giving back.Give back not only to those in need within our community, but also the future generations of this wonderful community. What started out as a great idea has grown exponentially and has become an amazing reality. Here at the RCS Giving Garden, school groups, master gardeners, corporate volunteers, and our own employees work together for the common good of teaching children the art of gardening and the importance of healthy eating.
See what else RCS and the Giving Garden are up to:
Retail Construction Services, Inc.
11343 39th Street N.
Lake Elmo, MN 55042
From HWY 36 - go south on Lake Elmo Ave, turn left onto 39th Street, garden is at corner of 39th and Laverne.
From HWY 5- going west from Stillwater take right onto Laverne (near Fury dealership) garden is on the right at corner of Laverne and 39th street.
Along with butternut squash, turban squash, and pumpkins, spaghetti squash is part of the winter squash family, sometimes known as "keeper" squash because they will last for several months in cool storage. Their hard rind that protects them from moisture, an attribute that people have been taking advantage of for thousands of years--parts of winter squash have been found in pre-Columbian archeological sites in South America.
North American natives grew them too.
In fact, our name for squash comes from the Naraganset word "askutasquash" which the colonists corrupted to "isquotersquash," (think it in a Dutch accent) later shortened to just plain squash.
As for storage, keep them at room temperature for up to a month. For longer-term storage, ideally you need a place where the temperature hovers around 50 degrees.
We cooked one for our office staff to try. Wash and dry a squash and keep it whole. Rub the outside shell with olive oil, pierce one or two holes into it with a knife. Place on a baking dish and bake for 40 to 50 minutes at 350 degrees. When done your fork or knife will easily pierce it. Cut it open, and enjoy as is, or toss with a little olive oil or butter and a few herbs such as basil, chives, chervil, parsley or sage. Enjoy!
Today we had tomatoes, lettuce, onions, beans, zucchini, squash, corn, LOTS of hot peppers, bell peppers and eggplant. Below the bottom pictures are links to the three recipes that went to the food shelf with the produce. Again, these were supplied by Molly Brendmoen in our office.
Thank you Tom, and thank you to all of those in our office that are working in the garden every week!
We also had some of our tomatilla tomatoes ready. The tomatillo (Physalis philadelphica) is a plant of the tomato family, related to the cape gooseberry, bearing small, spherical and green or green-purple fruit of the same name. Tomatillos, referred to as green tomato (Spanish: tomate verde) in Mexico, are a staple in Mexican cuisine. Tomatillos are grown throughout the Western Hemisphere.
The tomatillo fruit is surrounded by a paper-like husk formed from the calyx. As the fruit matures, it fills the husk and can split it open by harvest. The husk turns brown, and the fruit can be any of a number of colors when ripe, including yellow, red, green, or even purple. Tomatillos are the key ingredient in fresh and cooked Latin American green sauces. The freshness and greenness of the husk are quality criteria. Fruit should be firm and bright green, as the green colour and tart flavour are the main culinary contributions of the fruit.
Tomatillo plants are highly self-incompatible (two or more plants are needed for proper pollination; thus isolated tomatillo plants rarely set fruit).
Ripe tomatillos will keep in the refrigerator for about two weeks. They will keep even longer if the husks are removed and the fruits are placed in sealed plastic bags stored in the refrigerator. They may also be frozen whole or sliced. Molly Brendmoen on our staff offered the following recipes to go along with the these wonderful treats! Click on the link below to open each recipe!
Thank you Tom and thank you Andrew Peltier!
Chuck had called RCS the day before after also receiving the email from United Way of Washington County East looking for donations. Before we knew it, he was here the next morning with his donation.
"Thank you" so much to the Newman's for your donation!
While she was camera shy, Retail Construction Services, Inc. extends the most sincere "thank you" to Lou for her generous donation. This donation has helped up buy additional supplies needed to complete our garden shed project with the kids!
Thank you Lou!
"If you've never experienced the joy of accomplishing more than you can imagine, plant a garden." Robert Brault. Team members from UPS returned to the garden today and had the wonderful surprise of seeing how much the garden had grown since they joined us for planting day on May 24th!
Since the launch of their Volunteer Impact Initiative in 1999, volunteerism has become a global phenomenon at UPS as employees around the world have embraced this important piece of the organization’s culture. Every year UPSers from the most senior levels of management to the part-time ranks lend their skills in a variety of ways. From serving as directors for high performing non-profits to lending their skills as loaned executives to local United Ways, UPSers embrace opportunities to participate in knowledge sharing, skills-based volunteerism with its employees and families volunteering more than 1.2 million hours of their time each year.
Additionally, The UPS Foundation, founded has pursued initiatives by identifying specific projects where its support can help produce a measurable social impact. In 2009, The UPS Foundation donated more than $43 million US to charitable organizations worldwide. Visit: http://responsibility.ups.com/ for more information about UPS's community involvement.
We thank the team from UPS for clearing the tomato aisle ways, picking produce and clearing more many more weeds that seem to "love" our garden as much as the produce! We look forward to the UPS team joining us throughout the gardening season. Thank you guys!