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  • Bloom Food

    Wide variety of regional flower petals adds vibrant hues to summertime salads
  • Enthusiasm for eating flowers is bound to blossom on two local farm tours this summer.
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    • If you go
      What: Tours of Pacific Botanicals in Grants Pass and Herb Pharm in Williams; charter-bus transportation and picnic lunches provided by Ashland Food Co-op; cost is $35 for Co-op owners, $40 otherwis...
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      If you go
      What: Tours of Pacific Botanicals in Grants Pass and Herb Pharm in Williams; charter-bus transportation and picnic lunches provided by Ashland Food Co-op; cost is $35 for Co-op owners, $40 otherwise ($5 for children younger than 12 on the Pacific Botanicals tour only); preregistration required.

      When and where: Saturdays, July 16 and Aug. 27, respectively. Tour groups convene at 8 a.m. at the Co-op, 237 N. First St., Ashland. Bring sunscreen, hats and water bottles.

      For more information and to register: Call 541-482-2237 or see www.ashlandfood.coop.
  • Enthusiasm for eating flowers is bound to blossom on two local farm tours this summer.
    Pacific Botanicals in Grants Pass and Herb Pharm in Williams plan to open their fields and gardens to guests at the behest of Ashland Food Co-op this month and next. Both operations are among the largest in the country's herbal-supplement industry, growing hundreds of medicinal and otherwise edible plants.
    "We talk so much about local farms ... people assume produce," says Mary Shaw, culinary educator for the Co-op.
    "We wanted to make people more aware of what a rich region — bioregion — this is for herbs," she says. "Any kind of herb that you eat the leaf of, you can also eat the bloom."
    Calendula, a golden blossom in the daisy family, will be front and center at both farms.
    The plant is widely cultivated for its oil and used as a balm for the skin, but the petals add a vibrant hue to summertime salads, says Shaw. Dried, they can be used to color foods yellow.
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