Archives for category: Binikou Events

Saturday Morning Superfoods at the Palermo Community Library

Free Super Healthy Snacks!
Free seeds and plants!
Free exchange of ideas on how to identify, grow, and prepare super healthy local foods.
Free for all ages!

Free food, free plants, and plenty of fun and knowledge for the whole family!
11 am – 12 noon every Saturday morning at the Palermo Community Library, starting August 20th

The Palermo Community Library, in collaboration with Binikou ~ the Human Powered School, has received a generous grant from Healthy Waldo County to run a weekly program supporting healthy lifestyles that include eating and growing a wide variety of super nutritious local foods. Saturday Morning Superfoods events start on August 20th, from 11 am to noon. These events will be fun, all ages explorations of the highest quality foods you can grow yourself right here in Maine. Attendees of the events will get to taste local foods prepared with healthy, fun, and delicious recipes. There will also be information on wild foods, and planting and preparation techniques for growing your own superfoods. And attendees will receive free seeds or plants to cultivate at home, and will get an opportunity to contribute information and artwork to Binikou’s Enclopedia of Solutions for improving the quality of life for humans all over the world.

If you’re wondering what a “superfood” is, it is a food that is especially dense with nutrients, or has a high level of some hard to get nutrient. So eating even a little bit of a superfood makes your body superpowered!

Each Saturday Morning Superfood event at the library will feature different local foods, such as sunchokes, kale, wood sorrel, clover sprouts, Maine blueberries, and the surprisingly powerful and tasty purslane. There will be a variety of sweet and savory things to eat each week, so come on by on Saturday morning and bring some friends and family, too. For more information check out the library’s new blog at or visit the “Palermo Community Library” page on Facebook. And look for the Library’s human powered garden float after the Palermo Days parade.

Also, for locals who want to show off their own locally grown superfood plants, especially hardy perennials, in the program, please get in touch with Turil at TheWiseTurtle at or call and leave a message at the library at 993-6088. The library is looking for both fresh picked foods and whole plants and seeds for others to cultivate in their own superfood gardens.

Seeds are magic, even in real life!


Binikou is sponsoring an event for Earth Day, up here in little old Palermo, Maine! Here’s the info for any locals who might be interested:

The Palermo Community Library celebrates Earth Day 2011 on Saturday April 23, from 10am to 2pm, with a groundbreaking event for the brand new Community Garden! Come help dig, plant, and plan for a living library, filled with a diverse range of herbs, fruit trees, flowers, and nutritious wild edibles.

Donations of plants, gardening supplies, and seeds are more than welcome! You can even help us plan and build a wooden bridge over the stream that runs through the garden. Learn a little about permaculture planing, food forests, plants that local Native Americans used, and all kinds of things about both wild and tame gardening. Bring your own gardening stories to share with others, too! Books and other media on plants, gardening, and being a steward of the Earth will be showcased, and you might find something exciting to borrow, and enjoy at home, as well.

If you want to donate materials for the new garden before or after the 23, contact Turil Cronburg at, or at 993-2490. Otherwise just show up with your donations on the 23 and we’ll put it all to good use right away! Extra tools, perennials, and garden stones are especially useful.

We might also have some free seeds and seedlings to give away so that you might be able to start your own little garden, too, to make your part of the Earth a little more colorful and delicious!

Also, take a look at some inspiration for creating your own community spaces over at Reclaim the Commons! at

Happy Earth Day wherever you are!

This past Sunday Binikou made a visit to the big barn-shaped center at the Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association (MOFGA) headquarters in Unity, Maine for the annual seed and scion swap. The event is a grand exchange of potential for growth, in the form of gardeners and orchardists freely sharing their own abundance of nature’s seeds and tree branches!

Binikou offered our brand new thank you gifts of seed packets, using the abundance of seeds that we grew in last year’s very, very small garden in Somerville, Massachusetts, as well as some other seeds we had a plethora of. Binikou’s seeds were snapped up faster than anyone else’s seeds! (Maybe it was the appealing artwork that we put on the packets. :-)

We met friends, shared wisdom about growing and harvesting all sorts of amazing plants and mushrooms, and came home with a bag brimming with heirloom, wild, and cultivated seeds, as well as some fruit tree scions (scions are bits of branches from trees which can be rooted or grafted onto other trees and which will grow into clones of the original tree). Binikou will offer many of these seeds as thank you gifts to contributors to the project, and many of the seeds, along with the trees, will also go into an educational heritage garden at the Palermo Community Library for it’s “Living Library” project which Binikou is creating on the land surrounding the library. (An offical announcement about this will be coming soon!)

Today, you can enjoy some photos from the seed and scion swap, which was very well attended, and which featured 8 full length tables of about 100 different apple tree scions, mostly contributed by the illustrious John Bunker from Fedco Seeds and MOFGA. John might be called the modern-day Johnny Appleseed, promoting a wide heritage of apple tree clone lineages, and preserving the most delightful apple tree cultivars from all over the world. Apple trees are a unique agricultural oddity, in that each type of apple you hear about, such as Honey Crisp, Granny Smith, or Golden Delicious, is from a single original tree that has been cloned by grafting a small branch of the original tree onto another tree (often a “crab” apple tree). This is because when trees are grown from seeds, the flavor, color, size, and texture of the apples that the tree makes varies wildly, and most people only want the sweetest apples, rather than what are often called “crab” apples. Before humans started doing this cloning/grafting, apples were often very bitter, and were mostly used to make hard cider (alcohol). Nowadays we have the option of growing more wild trees from seed, and enjoying the creativity and surprise of nature’s approach to making apples, or we can clone the ones we really like. Using both approaches keeps both apple trees and humans happy!

All kinds of seeds for free!

just a few of the thousands of apple tree twigs for grafting

who knew twigs were so valuable!

grow your own heirloom popcorn!

a few of binikou's offerings

Another successful Binikou event! Today’s Superfoods Sampling Day went exceptionally well, bringing out 2-3 times the number of regular winter Saturday afternoon visitors at the quiet and friendly little Palermo Public Library. There were around 20 people who showed up and tasted a large variety of super nutritious and delicious foods such as chia pudding, walnut basil pesto, flax crackers, fresh wheat grass, and miso. And, as usual, the kids and adults got a good workout using the human powered blender to make yummy green smoothies with an all time favorite Maine superfood, blueberries (picked from my Mom’s front yard last summer and waiting patiently in the freezer until today to be devoured). There was even one generous visitor who also brought her own very popular and healthy version of Macaroni and Cheese made with cauliflower instead of wheat pasta.

Oh, and adorable little basil seedlings were offered up to green food lovers, who were happy to adopt the younglings and give them a warm, sunny windowsill to nourish them and help them grow up into happy, healthy superfood!

Next up in the School Vacation Week Community Sharing Extravaganza, on Tuesday, is storytelling. The storytelling will no doubt be featuring my all time favorite kid’s book Jerome, the story of a frog who is told he is a prince, and so he starts acting like a prince by creatively and compassionate solving problems and saving the town from a dragon who turns out to be quite happy using his fire to burn garbage rather than the houses, a crow who learns that he doesn’t need to horde all the corn and from then on only eats a crow-sized portion of the harvest rather than all of it, and a wizard who is helped to realize that he was much happier as a joyful young child than as an evil wizard and then POOF! turns himself into that joyful child chasing rainbows and running down emerald green hills for the rest of his life. And, of course, for storytelling day my Mom, a professional storyteller and theater teacher, will likely perform some grand tales from a long time ago in a place far away (but not that far away). I can’t wait!

Happy melting Maine snow to everyone!

inspiring conversations, possibly about super foods :-)

This young man really, really loved everything.  Seriously!

human powered blenders are kid magnets!

Last fall Binikou was a small part of the Boston area Urban Homesteaders League event at the Union Square Farmer’s Market. You can see a small appearance of me, Turil, teaching Somerville, Massachusetts folks all about wheatgrass, greens, and juicing with human power in the Urban Homesteader’s League short video. (I’m the goofy one with the blue vest and green scarf, babbling about juicing!)

You can also take a look at a few blog posts about the event at:

The View from a Skillshare Leader–Lorie Reilly

The View from a Skillshare Leader–Jaime Alberts

The 10.23 Market Stand (Photos)

And the handout, with the wheatgrass growing mini-lesson, along with the other lessons from that day, can be downloaded as a PDF, if you’re especially curious!

No, this isn't wheatgrass, but it's pretty and green!

If you’re anywhere near the Palermo, Maine area (kind of near Augusta), please join Binikou in a new week-long event we’re calling the Community Sharing Extravaganza at the Palermo Public Library!

Saturday February 19 is Superfoods Sampling Day
Current Events page
Tuesday February 21 is Storytelling Day

Thursday February 24 is Crafts Day

Saturday February 26 is Games and Movie Day (featuring the most awesome movies Nausicaä and Zeitgeist: Moving Forward).

For more information, check out Binikou’s