Girl Scout Jaclyn Jorolemon is preparing a snack garden for seniors at Farmington Gardens as part of her Gold Award project
FARMINGTON — Many senior citizens don’t always get to eat fresh fruits and vegetables that not only help them enjoy healthier lives, but also taste pretty darn good.
And Jaclyn Jorolemon, who in the fall will be a freshman at Canandaigua Academy, is looking to make their golden years a little bit better while pursuing gold herself.
Jaclyn, who is a member of Girl Scout Troop 40135, is working on her Gold Award, which is considered Girl Scouting’s highest honor.
Jaclyn, a few friends and family, and members of her troop are installing snacking garden raised beds at Farmington Gardens, a senior-living community off Route 332. They were to begin work Saturday morning preparing beds for peas, carrots, beans, cucumbers, raspberries and tomatoes.
This will involve making two raised garden beds about 3 feet long and a foot wide. The raspberry beds will be about 10 feet long to fit five raspberry canes.
That should mean lots of salads and healthy sides come dinner time.
“I’ll see you around 6 o’clock,” cracked resident Marjorie Sumpter, who added she is looking forward to what grows from the garden.
The National Council on Aging says that as folks grow older, the metabolism slows down and so they need fewer calories. But, the council advises, that means it’s extra important for seniors to choose the right types of food — bright orange, red, green and purple foods like fresh produce.
“Seniors don’t really get a lot of fruits and vegetables all year long,” Jaclyn said. “They’re really happy for me to start the project.”
Jaclyn is a gardener herself, thanks to her grandmother, Nancy Farnham. Since she was about 4 or 5, Jaclyn used to help her plant a garden, and vice versa.
Not only does gardening help provide tasty snacks, but gardening also is a healthy hobby for seniors to take part in and remain active, Jaclyn said.
“Gardening is one of my favorite hobbies to do,” Jaclyn said.
But that’s not all she does.
Jaclyn throws the shot put and discuss for the Canandaigua Academy varsity track squad and plays junior varsity volleyball. She also enjoys skiing, and science is her favorite subject in school.
Girl Scouts also is near and dear to her heart.
“I like how we involve the community,” she said. “We learn leadership skills and prepare for future life.”
Judi Williams, a Farmington Gardens resident and master gardener herself, said gardening is lifelong therapy. And approaching her 78th birthday, she asked, what other hobby can she do that doesn’t cost much?
“I’m so excited about it,” Williams said. “You’d think I was her grandmother.”
Get ready for berries
This wet and cool spring has many thinking wistfully of a dish of strawberry shortcake, a slice of strawberry-rhubarb pie or a cold, refreshing strawberry daiquiri at the end of the workday (don’t judge).
You remember strawberries, don’t you?
It’s been easy to forget about this juicy fruit of the season, which has come a bit later than usual this year.
Wait no more.
Visitors to the Canandaigua Farmers Market on Saturday can find strawberries (and a hard cider made with strawberry and rhubarb), courtesy of Lagoner Farms of Williamson, Wayne County.
Trippleberry Farm in Kendall, Orleans County, will have its first-of-the-season pesticide-free strawberries.
And for a special treat, Kitchen Blessings in Rushville will have a strawberry cake roll (in individual slices), as well as rhubarb, blueberry, strawberry-rhubarb, and “Fruits of the Forest” pies.
But the Farmers Market vendors have done the work for you.
Here are five tips from the New York State Berry Growers Association for picking your own strawberries or picking them out while shopping someplace other than the Farmers Market.
1) Buy local. To find fresh, healthful berries at a berry farm in your area, visit the Growers Association’s Find a Farm directory.
2) Look for bright color and firm flesh. Select only strawberries that are shiny and firm, with a rich red color and caps and/or stems that are a vibrant green and fresh looking.
3) Size and shape don’t equal quality. Even if the berries have a funny shape or vary in size, as long as they’re ripe, they’ll still taste great.
4) Plan a midmorning harvest. If you’re planning to visit a U-pick berry farm, time your trip for midmorning, after the dew has evaporated but the berries are still cool to the touch. Harvest the berries by holding the fruit with one hand and using the thumb and index finger of the opposite hand to snap the stem.
5) Store at optimal temperatures. Once you get home, take the strawberries out of the carton and look for any that might be partially squashed or have the beginnings of mold growth; remove these berries to prevent additional mold from forming. Wash only what you need for the moment, and refrigerate the unwashed remainder. Refrigerated berries will generally stay fresh for up to a week.
No foie gras ban
A ban on the production and sale of foie gras proposed by local activist Joel Freedman did not make it out of a Canandaigua City Council committee earlier this week.
Freedman said no one in Canandaigua is selling foie gras — the liver of a duck or goose that is considered a delicacy in parts of the world.
You can google how it’s made if you must, but the practice involves force-feeding ducks or geese and has been abandoned in many parts of Europe, Freedman said.
Several members of the committee discussed their opposition, but stopped short of calling for actual legislation.
Councilmember Renée Sutton called it a heinous practice, but said because the problem does not exist in Canandaigua, “I don’t think an ordinance is necessary.”