Thursday, August 27, 2009

Changes in Programs and Staff

I am sad to announce that as of February 2008 I will no longer be the Farm Director and Caretaker for the Wyckoff Farm Museum. I am also sad to announce that the former Farm programs including the Youth Entrepreneur Program and the Farmers Market have been canceled for the next season. The Community Demonstration Garden will continue as construction allows, but will be changing its focus away from providing food for people in the neighborhood and teaching organic urban gardening. I hope that these programs will resume in the future and look forward to the Wyckoff Farm developing its relationship with the community and becoming a beacon in the effort to provide healthy and sustainable food to all New Yorkers.

Please see the official Wyckoff House & Association website for updates

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Friday, October 26, 2007

Eating Good in the Hood: Wyckoff Intern Speaks on Panel at the Globesity Festival.

On Thursday October 25th, Wyckoff Youth Entrepreneurship Intern Jensine Lagombra spoke on a panel at the Globesity Festival titled“Eating Good in the Hood”. The panel discussion addressed issues of access to healthy food in urban areas of NYC. The panelist discussed both short and long terms solutions to food insecurity in our communities, from community run and organized farmers markets, making healthy food available in bodegas, community gardens, gardening and food education and getting healthy local food distributed in food pantries. The panel was moderated by Hillary Baum of the New York City Food System Network. In addition to Jensine other panelist included the amazing women working in food justice in New York City including, Karen Washington of La Familia Verde in the Bronx, Donya A. Williams, Program Coordinator for the NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene’s Healthy Bodegas Initiative, Lizzie Ayer Farm Director and Caretaker for the Wyckoff Farmhouse Museum in Brooklyn and Cara Fraver, Just Food, Fresh Food For All Program Coordinator.

For more info on the Globesity Festival see

The GLOBESITY FESTIVAL is razor sharp performance, comedy, education, celebration and collaboration. With Theatre as our laboratory, we are cooking & cutting up ingredients for SOLUTIONS. GLOBESITY is the over consumption of all natural elements that create and sustain life on Earth – some of the most vital and visible being water, minerals, oil, and FOOD. Our approach to food and sustenance is destroying our personal and social health. Our Earth and our Bodies cannot sustain the beastly grind of consumption. This beast is Globesity. It has been named. Now is the hour of confrontation.

Jensine Lagombra Speaks at the Globesity Festival 10/25/07

I’m an intern at the Wyckoff Farmhouse Museum, along with four other interns: Keneka, Tyler, Denzel and Luther. The internship program teaches leadership and entrepreneurship, such as learning how to do a business plan, money management, marketing skills and communication skills, as well as learning how to advertise.

The project of an internship is the opportunity to gather experiences and to learn how to interact with the world of different age categories that is around you. Entrepreneurship is the strategy in which you learn to do something (like create a product) and sell it, with your name on the label; I made tomato sauce, which was a best seller, using produce from the garden; with this experience I learned how to can food, which has to be done in a certified kitchen, and I found out I have a talent. My co-workers also made their own value-added products: salsa, hot sauce and jam.

I also learned how to identify plants, do companion planting, season extension, food security, container gardening (which deals with harvesting), weeding, planting, mulching, compost, watering (irrigation system), food storage, deadheading, creating beds, medicinal herbs for your physical health, and many more. My favorite task is harvesting tomatoes, and the task I dislike is weeding – but hey I still do it!

What I learned from my co-workers that happen to either be a friend or became a friend is teamwork, a good work ethic, taking turns, helping one another and having fun. (I love when we joke around and chase each other because it’s never boring.)
At the end of the week, we have a farmer’s market on Sunday (the best day out of our work days). The market’s purpose is to show that anyone can access locally grown fresh food. It’s better tasting than your average supermarket vegetables and fruits. We also have workshops to teach you how to grow your own food and extend the season for your fruits and vegetables.

The market taught me how to weigh produce by the pound, how to calculate money faster, how to be patient, have fun hearing people tell jokes, tell stories and teach people what I know, especially children. It also teaches regular people about food choices and eating healthier.

I have been working at the Wyckoff Farmhouse Museum for two years. It’s located in Brooklyn, where its surroundings are factories, a few restaurants, gas stations, tire shops, landfills and two schools (one public and one Catholic). There’s not much of a community focus.Working at Wyckoff created a fundamental base which helped me eat healthier than what I ate before. It gave me the options of eating more fruits and vegetables such as carrots, tomatoes, watermelon, cucumbers, broccoli, peas, beans, radishes, eggplants and beets, rather than eating fast food, which I’ve cut down on since I’ve been working at Wyckoff. I also stopped drinking soda and prefer to drink Red Jacket Apple Cider, which is made locally and organically.

All the experiences working here affect my individual life in learning how to adapt to more food choices that are healthy and organic. Making meals with corn, green beans, carrots and beets, I’ve come to love them.

I enjoy being a part of the Wyckoff community and staff because I have met friends that could be lifelong, and also working here made me realize that I don’t need to spend $200 in food. Instead I just have to pay $1.20 for a seed packet and those seeds will produce bushes or rows of produce for months. How cool is that! I’ll have the satisfaction that I know where it came from, it doesn’t have chemicals that are harmful to me, and I don’t have to pay for a bag of produce every week. I’m grateful that I made that choice, and you will be, too.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Youth Products Now Available for Sale!

We are very excited to announce the new line of Wyckoff Farm youth made and designed value added products! Our youth interns have been busy all year growing the plants, perfecting the recipes, making marketing plans, canning their items and now they are ready to hit the road. Please stop by our market this week, as these items will not last long!

Neka’s Original Jamaican Hot Sauce, available in 5 or 10 oz bottles in Super Hot and Not that Hot.

Wyckoff Famous Latin flavor Tomato Sauce, Jensi’s Homemade Style.

Denzel’s Salstastic Salsa,A New York Tradition Since 2007!
Strawberry & Red Currant Jam, History Never Tasted Better!

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Wyckoff in NY Magazine!

please note our upcoming canning workshop is on September 9th, NOT 9/12

Preservation Haul
Locavores revive home canning
* By Alexandra Zissu
When September brings mounds of Greenmarket produce, you end up with more good stuff than you can possibly eat. Hence the rediscovery of home canning and pickling, recently coming back into vogue thanks to the popularity of the local-food movement and books like Barbara Kingsolver’s Animal, Vegetable, Miracle. Families in need of guidance will find it at a food-preservation workshop at Brooklyn’s Wyckoff Farmhouse Farmers’ Market on September 12. There, they will also find enough organic local produce (nearly all grown on-site and harvested by neighborhood youth, although fruit, juice, and free-range organic eggs hail from two upstate farms) to line the pantry until next spring. “We demonstrate canning fresh vegetables from our garden. We do some tomato sauce, some pickles,” explains farm director Lizzie Ayer, who has a weakness for beets pickled with nutmeg, cinnamon, vinegar, and sugar. (Canning is preferable to freezing for New Yorkers with small fridges but slightly more shelf space.) If the canners’ helpers tire of the demo, let them inspect the garden to see the vegetables in situ and maybe pick a berry or two. This is an especially excellent activity for picky eaters. “I’ve had kids who think food comes from the grocery store, and they pick cherry tomatoes until they get sick from eating so many,” says Ayer. “If you can get them to participate in the growing or harvesting of produce, they will eat it, hands down.” Even if they don’t, they’ll be learning. “Anything that encourages kids to spend time with parents talking about healthy eating is beneficial.” Remind them of that when they’re up to their necks in pulp.

9/12, food-preparation demonstration 1–3 p.m., farmers’ market 1–4 p.m. Wyckoff Farmhouse Farmers’ Market, M. Fidler-Wyckoff Park, 5816 Clarendon Rd., East Flatbush, Brooklyn ( or 718-629-5400); free demo, produce varies.

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

This Sunday, 9/9 Farmers Market, Canning Demonstration & Volunteer Day!

This Sunday at the Wyckoff Farmhouse Museum.

Farmers Market 1-4pm

Canning & Food Demonstration 1-3pm

Garden Volunteer Day 11am-4pm

Our youth host the Wyckoff Farmers Market, selling produce, herbs and fruit grown right here on site by them, as well as a variety of other local products including eggs, juices, baked goods and more. The Market accepts cash, checks, EBT and Senior & WIC FMNP coupons. Please stop by to purchase some healthy food and support local youth!

This Sunday we will also be teaching how Canning and Food Preservation, learn how to preserve fresh produce to savor all year long. Also feel free to come on over to the garden to lend a hand. Bring work clothes, a water bottle and gloves if you have them.