Cooking

Food, Not Flowers

A local urban garden shares its bounty

Silver Lake Farms started selling beautiful, organic flowers from its urban garden in 2004, but when owner Tara Kolla learned it was against city ordinance, she planted edible plants. Now her loss is your gain.

The first delivery from the garden's CSA (community supported agriculture) program goes out this week. The process is simple: Pay $200 up front, and every week for 10 weeks, you get to pick up a box filled with vegetables and herbs.

This time around, the boxes will have basil, leeks, beets, mint, carrots, onions, celery, Romaine lettuce, cilantro, squash, garlic, tomatoes and kale. The selection changes seasonally and is flexible--request more carrots or kale on the weekly delivery sheet if you don't like cilantro, for example.

Kolla has partnered with another farm to help fill demand, so some produce will come from Sweredoski Farms, a regular fixture at the Echo Park farmers' market. When her crops come in, Kolla will add things like azuki beans, sweet potatoes and mustard greens from her urban garden, in addition to recipes. Plus, there will always be a bouquet of pesticide-free flowers in the box--at no extra charge.

If you missed this round, don't fret: Go to the Silver Lake Farms website to sign up for future deliveries.

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