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Welcome to Paonia Farm and Home Supply

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Paonia Farm and Home Supply, also known as Paonia’s do-it-yourself center, wants to show your project(s) with pictures to inspire our community to get started with their project.  Please come into the store and share your before, during, and after pictures of your projects, gardens, remodeling efforts, and farm animals.

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle with Tattler

Tattler Lids are Reuseable

Tattler Lids are Reuseable

TATTLER canning lids provide a cost effective alternative to metal lids, as well as a safe, and environmentally friendly product for your home food preservation. TATTLER lids are BPA free!

Tattler Reusable Canning lids are which are made in America.

TATTLER lids are especially desirable for acid foods, pickles, peppers, tomatoes, etc, since they will not corrode.

Tattler lids are perfect for the home canner who wish to Reduce, Reuse, and Recyle and save time and money.

Key Benefits:

Dishwasher safe

Canned Peaches with Tattler Lids

Canned Peaches with Tattler Lids

Indefinitely reusable
Use standard canning processes
No food spoilage due to acid corrosion
FDA approved materials
Use with Pressure or water bath canning methods.
Made of a food grade product known as (POM) or Acetal Copolymer

Tips For Best Results:

Tattler and Traditional Lids

Tattler and Traditional Lids

1. Inspect top of jar for cracks and nicks.
2. Wash, rinse and sterilize jars. Scald lids and rubber rings. Leave in water until ready to use.
3. Fill jars as indicated per canning instructions for that food type.
4. Wipe top of jar after filling. Place lid and rubber ring combination on jar.
5. Screw band on jar loosely. Center lid on jar and hold in place with finger while you finish tightening the metal band. THEN TURN BACK 1/4 INCH. Product must be allowed to vent during processing.
6. Process as per instructions for various foods.
7. TIGHTEN METAL BAND FIRMLY IMMEDIATELY UPON REMOVAL FROM CANNER.
8. When jars have cooled, remove metal band and determine by feel if lids are securely sealed. Sealed jars may be stored without metal bands if desired.
9. When removing lid gently insert table knife between rubber and jar to release seal – DO NOT USE SHARP KNIFE.
10. Wash plastic lids and rubber rings, rinse, dry and store for future use. Do not save any rubber ring which is cut or deformed.

Save money when canning with reuseable lids and rings

Save money when canning with reuseable lids and rings

TATTLER reuseable lids and rings are available at Paonia Farm and Home Supply along with all your other canning needs.

 

 

Cedar’s Grasshopper Remedy

grasshopperGrasshoppers have been wrecking havoc and destruction in many local Paonia Gardens.  We have had numerous requests for an Organic grasshopper treatment.

It’s not too late to try this organic formula for pest control, and thanks to Cedar, from the Paonia Farm and Home Organics store, we have a remedy.  It’s very simple and all the ingredients are available at the Organics store.

Pour into a one gallon sprayer:0002615691140_500X500

1 cup Molasses
1 Tbsp neem
2 Tbsp azamax
1 tsp liquid Dr. Bronner’s Castille soap

Spray early morning or after dark to protect the honey bees.

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Tarragon or Herbal Vinegar Basics

French tarragon is used for culinary purposes.

French tarragon is used for culinary purposes.

Tarragon or other herb flavored vinegars are easy and inexpensive to make and provide a simple, appetizing way to add flavor to salad dressings, marinades, and every day meals. Tasty, distinctive, flavored vinegars can also be added to roasted vegetables, drizzled over fish, splashed into a soup, stew or stir-fry for added flavor, or to baste chicken while it bakes.

The process requires few ingredients, basic equipment, and very little time. Homemade vinegars make a special and unique gift for any occasion. If you don’t have tarragon, try basil, Rosemary, thyme, dill, sage or parsley in an herbal vinegar.  Or try several different versions.

Fill jar with fresh herbs

Fill jar with fresh herbs

Ingredients:

  • 1-2 cups of French tarragon leaves, fresh and loosely packed – more herbs, more flavor
  • 2 cups white wine vinegar, apple cider vinegar, or rice wine vinegar
  • 4-5 cloves garlic, optional

(Additional herb sprig for decoration when bottling)

Preparation

1. Wash tarragon (or herbs) the night before, if needed, so herbs, freshly harvested in the morning, will maintain maximum flavor. Gather herbs in the morning, after the dew has dried. Bruise tarragon or herbs with the back of a chef knife, with a mortar and pestle or crumple herbs by hand to release maximum flavor.
2. Fill a dry sterilized  jar with tarragon or herbs of choice. (A quick run through the dishwasher
herbal+vinegars3. Pack a one quart jar with the herbs and pour the vinegar over the herbs. Cover the container with a plastic lid and leave for 2—3 weeks. This will draw out the flavor of the tarragon into the vinegar.  (Two-piece lids will work, but be aware vinegar will react with the metal screw bands)
4. Line a fine wire-mesh strainer with a paper coffee filter or cheese cloth. Pour vinegar mixture through the strainer into a large measuring cup, discarding the herbs.
5. Fill dry, attractive sterilized glass bottles with a fresh herb sprig, and add strained vinegar. Tightly seal the bottles with nonmetallic lids or corks; store the herbal vinegar in a cool dark place.

Dress fresh salad greens with herbal vinaigraitte

Dress fresh salad greens with vinaigrette

 

TARRAGON VINAIGRETTE (Salad dressing)

3 Tbsp. tarragon vinegar
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. freshly ground pepper
1/2 Cup olive oil
3 Tbsp. minced fresh tarragon or 1 tbsp. dried, crumbled

In a bowl whisk together the vinegar, salt, and pepper; add the oil in a stream, whisking, and whisk the vinaigrette until it is emulsified. Stir in tarragon. Makes about 3/4 cup.

Options for Pairing Vinegars and Herbs

White wine vinegar goes well with many herbs and is perfect for herbs or flower petals that produce color. Dill, basil, tarragon, chervil, mints, and lemon balm are well-suited to white wine vinegar.

Red wine vinegar adds a rich flavor and pairs well with sage, thyme, parsley and bay leaves.

Be creative:  mix and match herbs and garlic according to taste!

Bottles for herbal vinegars are available at Paonia Farm and Home

Bottles for herbal vinegars are available at Paonia Farm and Home

Time to Harvest Fresh Herbs

Fragrant, savory, aromatic herbs enhance flavors ocooked food without salt.

Fragrant, savory, aromatic herbs enhance flavors of cooked food without salt

How to Harvest Fresh Herbs and other Helpful Tips
  • Preserve the maximum flavor and color of homegrown herbs by cutting the plant on a sunny day after the dew is dried from the leaves.
  • Wash herbs, if possible, before harvesting to preserve maximum amounts of the precious essential oil component of the leaves.
  • Usually most herbs thrive when they are harvested multiple times or frequently harvested. Cut the herbs back in June or July by about half with scissors or a sharp knife and you may have another complete harvest to reap come Fall. In the Fall, herbs can be cut back to a few inches above the ground.
  • Hang small bundles of herbs on a line with clothes pins

    Hang small bundles of herbs on a line with clothes pins

    Although fresh is always best, extra leaves and stalks can be dried. Freshly picked herbs should be used right away, or dried upside down in small bundles in a dark, dry place.

  • Harvest herbs at peak flavor because it will surpass the dried herb in quality and flavor.
  • When the herbs are thoroughly dry, 3-5 days up to two weeks, strip the leaves off the stalks and crush them to a fine texture to use in cooking. Tea leaves can be kept whole.
  • A small jar of commercially dried herbs averages $6.00 for small containers. Think of the savings if you harvest more and the gifts you could make!
  • Paonia Farm and Home has a huge assortment of containers for storing dried herbs, making herbal gifts and even herbal vinegars.

    Various sized decorative jars for storing herbs and other seasonings

    Various sized decorative jars for storing herbs and other seasonings

Small tins can be used for dried herbs and gifts.

Small tins can be used for dried herbs and gifts.

Small decorative jars for herbs and making gifts.

Small decorative jars for herbs and making gifts.

    • Use herbs for flavor and reduce the need for salt and sugar! Allow the bounty of tasty herbs to encourage new creative and delicious cooking experiments. No more ho-hum dishes.
    • Herbs provide can be used in tasty teas, or garnishes for other drinks.

• Pick a small nosegay of herbs to scent your kitchen as you cook.
• Tiny bouquets of fresh herbs can be used for a hostess gift.fresh herbs

Attracting and Feeding Hummingbirds

Creating beautiful gardens that tantalize the eyes and attract hummingbirds produces an indescribable joy and delight.   For centuries, gardeners have been fascinated with the beauty, antics, and aerobatics of hummingbirds. At Paonia Farm and Home we encourage you to plant flowers and design gardens that fashion a bird friendly environment or incorporate clusters of hummingbird feeders in your yard and landscape.

Fun Facts about Hummingbird

Ruby Throated Hummingbirds are very common

  • Hummingbirds are the tiniest of all birds, weighing less than an ounce and measuring only 3 inches long.
  • During migration, some hummingbirds make a non-stop 500 mile flight over the Gulf of Mexico.
  • Unlike other birds, a hummingbird can rotate its wings in a circle. Because of this special hummingbird fact, they are the only bird that can fly both forwards and backwards. They can also fly up, down, sideways, hover in one spot, or fly upside down for short distances.
  • The hummingbird flight muscles make up 30% of a hummingbirds total body weight.
  • Their brightly-colored, iridescent feathers and quick movements make them appear as living sun catchers—hence their nickname, flying jewels.
  • They can hover in midair when sipping nectar from brightly–colored flowers with their long, slender beaks.
  • While whizzing about the garden, hummingbirds expend so much energy that they must eat at least half of their body weight each day to replace the 12,000 calories that they can burn up. This means eating almost constantly from sunrise to sunset and visiting over a thousand flowers every day.

 hummingbirdgarden

Flowers Will Attract Hummingbirds

In general orange and red flowers and colors attract the birds. Examples of annuals and perennials that can be incorporated into border areas and flower beds and are also known for attracting Hummingbirds include:

Gorgeous Colored Bee Balm Variety
Gorgeous Colored Bee Balm Variety
  •  Penstemon
    Butterfly bush
    Catmint
    Dianthus
    Columbine
    Coral bells
    Daylily
    Larkspur
    Delphinium
    Yucca
    Iris
    Lupine
    Petunia
    Scarlet sage
    Honeysuckle
    Soapwort
    Summer phlox
    Verbena

Hummingbird Nectar Mix

Hummingbird Feeder with Bird Perch

To prepare safe hummingbird food: Mix 1 part sugar with 4 parts water and bring to a boil to kill any bacteria or mold present. Cool the sugar solution and fill the feeder.  When water is plentiful, the solution can be increased to 1 part sugar to 3 parts water, or 1/3 cup sugar to 1 Cup water.

Other tips for making the hummingbird nectar include:

  • Never add red food color to sugar water.
  • Never use commercial mixes that have red dyes. Nectar in flowers is clear, and red food coloring may be harmful for hummingbirds.
  • Never use honey to make hummingbird food – when honey is diluted with water, bacteria and fungus thrive in it. Table sugar is perfect.

Selecting Hummingbird Feeders

The two most important issues to consider in selecting hummingbird feeders are how easy they are to take apart and clean, and how large they are. Bacteria and mold grow in sugar water, and sugar ferments, so hummingbird water should never be left out for more than two or three days, and changed daily in very hot weather.

The easier it is to clean a hummingbird feeder, the more likely you are to do it often and well. The fill hole should be large enough for you to be able to get a bottlebrush inside, and every crevice should be easy to scrub.

The best-sized feeders are those that are emptied every day or two by the hummingbirds you have. Hummingbirds are usually extremely territorial around feeding sites, and so four tiny feeders with one feeding port each, set in different trees or at different windows, will attract and maintain more hummingbirds than one large feeder with eight ports.

Bottle or tube hummingbird feeders can be glass or plastic, often with red plastic flowers and bee guards (little plastic screens that keep insects away from the sugar solution) on the feeding ports.

If the bee guards are yellow, they may, ironically, attract bees. Plastic saucer-type hummingbird feeders have feeding ports in the top, making them fairly bee-and wasp-proof. These feeders often have little moats in the center that should be filled with regular tap water—that will keep ants from climbing down the support wire or rod and getting to the sugar water.

Always avoid locating your hummingbird feeder in direct sun. Fermented sugar solution repels birds, and attracts ants and bees.