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  • Karma the Farma | Hoelle Lab

    Home About Projects Adventures in Gardening By Karma Rhythm I was fascinated by nature as a child, every weekend I would go on a hike or to the beach. As I got older and I took on more responsibility I lost this connection. Despite my hikes out here, and time spent at the beach, I still was not actively nourishing any natural connection. I was passively observing the natural world around me at best --more often than not, I was still very focused on school and other stressors when I was on those hikes and walks. It was through the gardening at the Greenhouse & Garden Project that I was able to find this connection again. This project serves two purposes, to tell my story, as well as to entice, encourage, and provide knowledge which will facilitate any other Isla Vistans who are interested in gardening, or even just getting more in touch with nature. Table of Contents Chapter 1: Gardening and Mental Health "As I began to connect with the gardeners around me I felt more comfortable at the garden and started showing up more often and caring for my plants more." Read Chapter 1 Chapter 2: Finding a Place to Garden in IV "After looking into the options I noted that some gardens had very long wait lists...Not the Green House and Garden Project though, where students can secure a plot for roughly $20 a quarter." Read Chapter 2 Chapter 3: Where to Get Sustainable Resources "It is important to consider any store bought seeds have been delivered to stores and are less sustainable than seeds cultivated locally." Read Chapter 3 Chapter 4: What/When to Plant in IV "There is actually a comprehensive guide for interested students published by the UC Cooperative Extension all about what to plant in Santa Barbara Area, month by month." Read Chapter 4 Chapter 5: My Difficulties Planting Seeds "Andy and Seth both recommended planting Kale in one way or another as it is a “feeder” and as long as you water it and provide it with nutrients, it will grow." Read Chapter 5 Chapter 6: Maintaining a Garden "Insecticides can be homemade out of vegetable oil or other oils and soaps, sometimes garlic or pepper can be effective too." Read Chapter 6 Chapter 7: Composting Basics "I did not start a compost pile this quarter, but it seems so easy after doing the research that I am convinced I should have." Read Chapter 7 A Redefining Experience My connection to nature and our local nature, here in Isla Vista, has been redefined by my experience in the garden. I have also built lasting connections with community members and a more developed appreciation for local nature. I am more present on my hikes and my walks on the beach now. And I’d consider Wayne an acquaintance, we recommend each other podcasts and I interviewed him for another class. I have learned a lot about what it takes to get a garden going and developed a deep admiration for those with a green-thumb as I am seriously lacking one. I have also concluded that the garden parallels our life in the sense that several aspects of the garden remain interconnected and that it is important to find a balance in every aspect, even down to the soil. I hope that if you are reading this, that my story--despite lacking serious conflict or triumph--has inspired you to go try and start a garden or try out a local farmer’s market. Thank you, peace. What I Learned About the Farmer: Karma is a 21 year old Isla Vistan who is about to graduate from the Environmental Studies Department at UCSB with a focus in writing and a certification in wilderness education through the Kamana program. Karma is passionate about music as well as the environment and has composed the musical component of this guide, entitled "Pink." Karma Rhythm ​ Environmental studies student, UCSB

  • Nature Journaling | Hoelle Lab

    Home Database Maps Guidelines Engaging Ebot IV ETHNOBOTANY PROJECT DIY: Nature Journaling Want to get better at identifying plants? Or do you have a plant you want to learn more about, but don't know it's name? We have some resources for you! ​ If you have a little extra time, click the link below to explore our DIY Ethnobotany Classes page. There you can see a full recording and slideshow of a 25 minute class on Plant Identification. It is more detailed than the video below.

  • Cooking Channel | Hoelle Lab

    Home Database Maps Guidelines Engaging Ebot IV ETHNOBOTANY PROJECT DIY: Cooking Channel Table of Contents: Blackberry Syrup Early Summer Salad Early Summer Stirfry Foraged Fritters Loquat & Brussel Sprout Salad Loquat Jam Nasturtium Pesto Natal Plum Smoothie Plantain Bite & Sting Remedy Spring Greens Salad Rosemary Shortbread Cookies Blackberry Syrup Ingredients: 2 cups blackberries 1 cup sugar 1 tablespoon lemon juice 1 tablespoon butter (optional) Recipe adapted from All Recipes *Note: I threw in some blueberries as I had them on hand ​ The process of harvesting the blackberries to making them into a syrup was such a fun and rewarding (not to mention delicious) experience! You can use the blackberry syrup on toast, drizzled on waffles, swirled in a drink, and much more! ​ Directions: Add blackberries, sugar, lemon juice, and butter to pot Bring to a boil and boil rapidly for two minutes Mash blackberries to a pulp with a wooden spoon (*Be careful as mixture is very hot!) Strain blackberry syrup to get rid of seeds and make smooth Transfer to container and let cool Enjoy! Blackberry syrup Early Summer Foraged Salad Ingredients: Nasturtium Chickweed Miner's Lettuce Fennel Pineapple Weed Mustard Sour Grass Dandelion Mallow We recommend grabbing a bowl and filling it with foraged flowers and leaves such as the list above in the spring. We did our salad a little late in the year and it was pretty bitter. Once you have your salad base, grab your favorite dressing and toss! Early Summer Foraged Salad Early Summer Foraged Stirfry Ingredients: Nasturtium Wild Radish Mustard Oil Salt We learned a lot from making this stirfry: please forage earlier in the season for all of these plants (Nasturtium, Wild Radish, Mustard) because the later you pick them, the more bitter and tough they will taste. It looks pretty though! ​ Directions: Basically, pick some edible leaves and flowers and seed pods and whatever else you want to throw in. Heat some oil in the pan, toss in the foraged goodies, salt to taste. Early Summer Foraged Stirfry Foraged Fritters We started out by making elderberry flower fritters, but then decided to explore for other edible plants to try in the fritter batter! They were all delicious, but the best was definitely Hummingbird Sage. Get creative with this one! Grab a bunch of edible plants that you think will taste good with sweet dough. Whip up your favorite pancake batter. Heat up some butter or oil on a pan. Then dip your edible plants into the batter and fry away like you would pancakes. Foraged Fritter Loquat & Brussel Sprout Salad Makes 2 servings. This recipe is from a dear friend, Marc Vukcevich! ​ Ingredients: 8 small/medium brussel sprouts 1 medium shallot 6 ripe loquats 5 springs of cilantro 1.5 tsp kosher salt 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar 2 tsp sesame seeds 0.5 tsp freshly ground pepper ​ Directions: Finely chop brussel sprouts into thin shavings Peel and finely dice a shallot From the loquats, remove any twigs or parts that harbor dust/dirt. Cut in half lengthwise and remove the large seeds by finger, knife, or gently squeezing the fruit. Once seeds have been removed, finely dice. *Loquat skins are not as enjoyable as the flesh and can be removed by a prick with a knife and a quick 30 second boil in hot water (process is called a blanche). Remove from the water and let cool. The skins should then be easy to peel. I deemed this step unnecessary for this recipe but may be useful for others. Rough chop the cilantro Combine all ingredients into a bowl. Put in the remaining ingredients and mix thoroughly. Let sit for a few minutes to let the salt and acid penetrate the shredded brussel sprouts and other ingredients. Adjust seasoning according to your preference and enjoy ​ Loquat and Brussel Sprout Loquat Jam Ingredients: 8 cups loquats (seeded and quartered) 4 cups sugar 1 tablespoon lemon juice 0.5 tsp cardamom (optional) *Note: I halved the recipe and added cinnamon instead of cardamom. ​ Directions: Remove stem and bottoms of loquats. Remove the seeds and slice into quarters (remove loquat skins if you would like) Add loquats into a pot and cover with sugar Let the loquats rest for 30 minutes until loquats have released their juice After 30 minutes, add your preferred spice and lemon juice Slowly bring to a boil and cook on low heat for 35-40 minutes, until mixture has thickened and become amber in color At this point you can either blend, mash, or use an immersion blender to puree the mixture into your desired consistency (I used a wooden spoon to mash the mixture. Be careful as the mixture is extremely hot) Transfer to a sterilized container and place in boiling water for 10 minutes Enjoy your jam! ​ I really enjoyed this recipe as it is simple and delicious! Making fruit jams is a perfect way of enjoying your favorite fruit out of its growing season. The jam is delicious on bread but be sure to experiment and see what other creations you can make! I have since used the jam to make a loquat grilled cheese with basil which was extremely tasty! Hope you enjoy this recipe! Loquat Jam Nasturtium Pesto Ingredients: 50 large nasturtium leaves or twice as many if small 0.25 cup pistachios (or favorite nut) 0.5 cup olive oil 0.5 cup parmesan cheese salt and pepper to taste ​ Recipe from Aske the Food Geek Nasturtium is a flowering plant that has edible leaves and stems. Nasturtium can be found on UCSB campus and in Isla Vista, particularly in the Camino Corto Open Space. The leaves and flowers have a peppery taste that adds a great flavor to this pesto. I really enjoyed the taste of this pesto and loved how versatile it is. I do not enjoy the taste of basil pesto, so this is a great alternative you can enjoy! ​ *Note: I used almonds and vegan parmesan cheese for this recipe. You can switch up the type of nut you want to use as this is a very versatile recipe! I also used nasturtium flowers as I wanted to use the whole plant. ​ Directions: Wash and dry the nasturtium flowers and leaves Add nasturtium leaves to blender and blend Add nuts after nasturtium leaves and flowers have been blended Blend completely and then add parmesan cheese and olive oil. Taste and add salt and pepper to your preference Enjoy your finished pesto product! I made pesto pasta with my final product, but you can also spread it on toast or use it for your salads. There are many other uses for nasturtium pesto so go wild and enjoy! Nasturtium Pesto Natal Plum and Banana Smoothie Grab some ripe natal plums, bananas and other fruits, as well as any other smoothie favorites (yogurt, ice cream, ice, honey, protein powder, etc.) Throw all of that into a blender and blend. Then enjoy! Natal Plum and Banana Smoothie Grab some ripe natal plums, bananas and other fruits, as well as any other smoothie favorites (yogurt, ice cream, ice, honey, protein powder, etc.) Throw all of that into a blender and blend. Then enjoy! Natal Plum and Banana Plantain Insect Bite and Bee Sting Remedy Looking for a quick, natural insect bite cure? If you're feeling itchy from an insect bite or bee sting (and you're not overly allergic), try this: ​ Grab some broadleaf plantain, chew it up, and apply it to the bite/sting. This should help reduce swelling and itchiness. I like to keep the chewed up leaf in place with a roll of gauze. ​ WARNING: If your throat is closing up or your whole body is breaking out, please go to the hospital, because this cure is only for locally affected bites and stings. Plantain Spring Greens Salad: Miner's Lettuce, Rosemary, & Stork's Bill Make a tasty salad with wild greens like Miner's Lettuce. Feel free to throw in other greens (nasturtium, chickweed, dandelion, mallow). Season with rosemary and stork's bill and toss with a dressing of your choice. Enjoy! Spring Greens Salad Rosemary Shortbread Cookies Ingredients: 1 1/2 cups butter, softened 2/3 cup white sugar 2 tbsp chopped fresh rosemary 2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour 1/4 tsp salt 2 tsp white sugar for decoration (optional) Directions: Cream room temperature butter with white sugar until light and fluffy Stir in flour, salt, and chopped rosemary until well blended. (The dough is very versatile and you can either roll your dough out until it is 1/4 inch thick and cut into rectangles/shape of your choice or roll the dough into a log and cut into 1/4 inch slices. If you would like to bypass the rolling and shaping process altogether you can instead press the dough in a 9x9 baking pan and bake after resting the dough). Cover and freeze for an hour. (Freezing the dough will make it easier to slice and will better keep its shape while baking). Pre-heat oven to 375 degrees F Line cookie sheets with parchment paper and place cookies 1 inch apart Bake for 10 minutes, or until golden brown around the edges Let cool and enjoy! ​ I really enjoyed this recipe and have made it several times since I first found it. Shortbread cookies are personally one of my favorite cookies as they are so tasty and easy to make (if you have an electric mixer). I thought the addition of rosemary would be odd, but the slight herbal flavor to the buttery cookie was amazing! The cookies themselves are fragrant and sophisticated, making them a perfect gift for a loved one or to eat all by yourself. Rosemary Shortbread

  • Simple Sustainability | Hoelle Lab

    "Simple Sustainability" Gardening, Pickling, and Tacos from Scratch Home About Projects Drone Footage by Jake Potts Video by Logan Snyder Songs: "Brightwood" by Amine , "Family For" by Chance the Rapper and Jeremih Recipe: Pickling Ingredients: 3 parts vinegar 2 parts sugar ½ part salt A bunch of ice cubes For example: 3 cups vinegar 2 cups sugar ½ cup salt A tray of ice cubes Directions: Measure all vinegar, sugar, and salt in a pot Stir until sugar and salt are dissolved Bring to a boil Take off heat and add ice cubes If hot pickling, pour over ingredients immediately If cold pickling, put pickling liquid in the fridge until cold, and then pour over ingredients Recipe: Homemade Tortillas Ingredients: 2.5 cups all-purpose flour ​ 1 teaspoon fine sea salt ​ 1.5 teaspoons baking powder ​ 3 tablespoons butter, lard, or oil I used butter ​ 3/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon warm water (not hot) Directions: Whisk together flour, salt, and baking powder Add the butter, lard or oil Rub in the fat with your hands until fully dispersed Add the warm (not hot) water and mix with hands until a rough ball comes together, and then move it to a flat table or cutting board Knead the dough until it becomes much firmer and smoother Cover with a somewhat damp kitchen towel and let dough rest for about 15 minutes Cut off pieces of dough and roll into balls 1.5x bigger than ping pong balls Using a rolling pin (or rolling pin substitute) roll out dough until you can see the shadow of your hand through it Place on very hot skillet for about 30 seconds each side (nonstick or cast-iron skillet preferred) Recipe: Garden Tacos Ingredients: Cauliflower ​ Bell pepper ​ Yellow onion ​ Acid of choice - Lemon, lime, or rice vinegar ​ Cooking oil (olive, vegetable, etc.) ​ Sesame oil ​ Salt, pepper Directions: Slice cauliflower, bell pepper, and onion into long slices Bring a pan to medium high heat and add oil Add all ingredients to pan, add salt and pepper Sautee all ingredients for about 10 minutes, or until the ingredients have softened and gotten color Turn off heat, add acid (I used rice vinegar) and sesame oil and stir around with remaining heat in the pan until all vegetables are coated Season to taste, and serve on homemade tortillas with pickled onions and cilantro The Science Behind Pickling: "Pickling is a sort of controlled decay, according to according to Dr. Bruno Xavier, a food processing authority at Cornell University. "When living organisms die, they activate several responses in the tissue that trigger the release of enzymes," says Xavier, that start to break down the vegetable. The acid from the vinegar, along with naturally forming acids in the food itself, slows down that decaying process. "There are certain salts," Xavier adds, "especially those containing calcium, that will help preserve some of the crunchiness of the pickle." You'll find those salts in commercial pickles" (Bonem). Learn More pH of Pickling Gardening at Home/ in Isla Vista: To learn more about growing your own food as a UCSB student and Isla Vista resident, visit "Karma the Farma", where you can immerse yourself in an in-depth overview of Karma's real life gardening experience. Karma the Farma Should I Grow My Own Food? For More Tortilla Recipes: Flour Tortillas from Scratch Homemade Tortillas 5 Ingredient Tortillas Try Another Recipe

  • Karma Ch 1 | Hoelle Lab

    Home About Projects Image by Karma Rhythm Chapter 1: Gardening and Mental Health As I began to connect with the gardeners around me I felt more comfortable at the garden and started showing up more often and caring for my plants more. I began to see my garden improve and in late February I finally saw one of my seeds sprout. As I started talking more with Andy, my neighbor in the garden, he began to help advise me on what weeds to pull and what to maybe leave in. He also welcomed me into his plot which is inspirational to say the least. ​ One unique thing about my plot, is I have a mailbox that came with it. I really didn’t know what to do with it at first, though I am tempted to decorate it now. Eventually, I opened the mailbox and found next to a huge spider a bag of some unidentified white powdery substance. It was a shipping envelope with the address blacked out and I did not know at first, but this would be a great way to break the ice with both Ferdinand and Briar who I had not previously chatted with at this point. I even asked Andy who sent me to Wayne who actually proposed a theory as to who was behind the whole thing: that it belonged to a very eccentric elderly gardener who had not been to the GHGP in years. The fact that nobody knew what was in there and we were all so interested, kind of brought the whole area together. It also helps that all of our plots are right next to each other. ​ As of writing this, I have not yet done a community work day and this is mandatory each quarter. I thought I was just busy with the classes I am taking, but I eventually realized I have probably put this off for so long because of my initial anxiety. I do think that I could work in the community setting now--that I am comfortable enough to. Although, with my current schedule a solo day of community service will probably work out better. I’m emailing Seth this week about an independent assignment as this is an alternate option. Read Chapter 2

  • Resin Jewelry | Hoelle Lab

    How To: Make Resin Jewelry Tutorial with: Sun Room Designs Local IV jewelry company Home About Projects Thanks to social media sites like Pinterest and Instagram, resin jewelry is becoming an incredibly popular way to make your own jewelry. Resin, according to Mixer Direct craft blog, is "a naturally-occurring organic compound that is sourced from plants. It usually consists of noncrystalline, liquid substance that is fusible, making it an effective alternative to plastic and other forms of design." As an alternative to plastic, resin presents artists with a more sustainable way of creating their own jewelry. To learn how to make my own jewelry, I interviewed and filmed the founders of Sun Room Designs, a local jewelry company in Isla Vista. The founders and artists are Amelia Busenhart and Shea Schwennicke, who beachcomb the cliffs of Devereux beach (between Campus Point and Coil Oil Point), collecting beautiful flowers and other plants that they then dip in resin and make into unique, sustainable, and upcycled inspired jewelry. How to Find the Right Plants: Our Isla Vista and UCSB campus coastline is home to a wide variety of plants, including flowers, edible fruits, ferns, and more. All you have to do is get out there and start beachcombing! When you come across beautiful flowers or the perfect ferns to make into resin earrings, you can identify them with the help of the IV Ethnobotany website, which features a map of many of the plant species found in our local environment, or mobile apps such as PlantNet, which identifies plants from pictures you take on your phone. While mobile apps may be somewhat more convenient, the IV Ethnobotany website is far more reliable for accurately identifying plants and allows you to gain your own knolwedge about plant identification. The site was created by Professor Jeoffrey Hoelle and his team of anthropology students. Visit IV Ethnobotany Image from IV Ethnobotany site of sourgrass plant. The yellow flowers seen in the video below are from a sour grass plant. Materials You Will Need: plants you gathered while beachcombing drying agent (can purchase from your local craft store) resin (can purchase from your local craft store) gloves (not necessary, but will help keep your fingers from getting sticky) cups (for pouring the resin into, preferably glass or reusable) tooth picks or nails (for adjusting the plants in the resin) molds (can also reuse bottle caps) earring (the part that connects to the resin and goes through your ear lobe, can purchase at local craft store) ​ ​ Note: Make sure to do this outside or in a well ventilated area to avoid having your house smell like resin. Image by Natalie Plumb Step by Step: Gather flowers while beachcombing. Separate out similar flowers to create a matching pair of earrings. Stir resin in a cup (reusable preferably) for two minutes. Pour resin into molds. Use a toothpick to place the flower in the desired part of the mold. Press down on any parts of the flower/plant that are sticking out of the resin. Let molds dry for 24 hours or until completely hardened. Remove earrings from molds, then connect to earring piece. Enjoy! The Story Behind Sunroom Designs: Amelia Try Another Project Sources: Subjects: Amelia Busenhart and Shea Schwennicke

  • Karma Ch 7 | Hoelle Lab

    Home About Projects Image by Karma Rhythm Chapter 7: Composting Basics I did not start a compost pile this quarter, but it seems so easy after doing the research that I am convinced I should have. I’m also certain that anyone who makes it this far into the guide should consider composting for their garden as well. According to the EPA, there are 5 main factors which will determine the health of the compost and these are: Graphic by Natalie Plumb Wayne says he uses local kelp in his compost and swears by it. Organic Blends to help your pile better compost can also be found at specialty shops like Island Seed and Feed. I have also found that Rock Phosphate, Fish meal and Alfalfa Meal can also be added to compost to help enrich it, or even mixed directly into soil to promote growth and act as fertilizers. What I Learned Sources: Compost guideline - EPA: Gardening with Fish Meal - GardenIQ: Gardening with Alfalfa Meal and Rock Phosphate - GardeningKnowHow:

  • IV Ethnobotany | Hoelle Lab

    Home Database Maps Guidelines Engaging Ebot Cultivating Communities IV ETHNOBOTANY PROJECT Welcome to the Isla Vista Ethnobotany Project, also called IV Ebot Project! Here you can discover edible, medicinal, and useful plants on the UCSB campus and in Isla Vista. We hope this site will help you get out and learn more about the plants in our area, but make sure not to take any unnecessary risks if you are unsure about a plant. When identifying and collecting plants, check listed information to ensure correct location and identification of plant species. Many of these plants are watered with reclaimed water, so remember to always wash your plant collections before use or consumption. Finally, please respect the plants, private property, and the hard work done by the UCSB grounds crew and restoration groups. ​ We would like to recognize that UCSB and IV are located on unceded Indigenous Chumash ancestral lands. On this site we highlight some of the rich ethnobotany and ecological knowledge of the Chumash and encourage respectful engagement with all plants, particularly native plants and those in the Chumash gardens and protected areas. Kumquat Eschscholzia californica Prickly Pear Cactus Kumquat 1/6 About Our Project This site provides information and locations of useful, edible, medicinal, and interesting plants on the UCSB campus and in Isla Vista. We hope this website will encourage engagement with plants in our local area, promote the planting of edible landscaping, inform users about ethical foraging practices, and teach residents about plants and local history. ​ Snacking on plants that grow under your nose is a great way to become more connected with the environment and learn more about cross-cultural plant uses. Foraging and harvesting your own produce can also contribute to decreased reliance on processed foods, or even the same fruits that come wrapped in cellophane or coated in pesticides at the store. Foraging ethically on campus supports sustainable practices, such as watering with reclaimed water, gathering your own local produce, and helping to reduce the amount of climate pollution in the production and transportation of the foods we eat. ​ Enjoy educating your taste buds, but please do not take any unnecessary risks if you are unsure about a plant. Make sure to check the listed information to ensure correct identification of edible plants and do not forage from restoration areas. Many of these plants are watered with reclaimed water, so be sure to wash them before consumption! Who We Are The Project is run out of the Hoelle Culture and Environment Lab at UCSB by Anthropology Professor, Jeffrey Hoelle. The site was created and is maintained by a dedicated group of students, currently headed by UCSB graduate, Kirsten Cook. Kirsten, Briana Pham, Cyrus Kayhan, Catherine Scanlon, and MacKenzie Wade are currently responsible for planning and organizing the site. Jordan Thomas, Joshua Richardson, Stephanie Austin, Ula Varley, Aiden Patterson, Laura Tucker, Logan Snyder, Daniel Jackson, Hannah Thomas, Sam Hendricks and several others all had a hand in the site as well. We are also very thankful to our plant experts here on and around campus: Wayne Chapman and Greg Whalert at CCBER, Cameron Hannah- Bick at the UCSB Greenhouse, Joe and Aaron with SB Recs and Park, and Andy Lanes. a7080e8f-f22d-4447-b238-06e16e5d9c07 9a36e692-ac06-44c8-869e-59a87df848f4 Jordan Foraging for Pindo Palm Fruits (y a7080e8f-f22d-4447-b238-06e16e5d9c07 1/15 IV Ethnobotany Team Olivia Bock UCSB Graduate/IV Ethnobotany Leader MacKenzie Wade UCSB Graduate Student Russell Nylen UCSB Graduate Student Past Members: Kirsten Cook, Briana Pham , Cyrus Kayhan, Bailey McKernan, Natalie Plumb

  • Why Should You Give a Shiitake? | Hoelle Lab

    Why Should You Give A Shiitake About Mushrooms? Home About Projects Image by Presetbase We may only think of mushrooms as a tasty treat or a gateway to a psychedelic trip, but mushrooms have played a larger role in human history than once thought. Human interactions with mushrooms caused an expansion in capacities of human minds, allowing us to evolve to our current state. The addition of a certain mushroom in the diets of ancient humans, “led to better eyesight (an advantage for hunters), sex, language, and ritual activity (religion among them), when eaten ”. The addition of the mushroom to early diets changed the actions of ancient humans giving them the ability to dominate their environments and evolve to what we are today. ​ Mushrooms have a vital role in human development, but also have a crucial impact on the environment. Mushrooms are one of the main decomposers of dead matter and without them, many nutrients would not be recycled into the environment. Fungi also play a big role in jumpstarting other environmental processes, including the carbon cycle. Fungi decompose dead matter, releasing carbon dioxide into the atmosphere and nutrients into the soil which will later be used by plant matter . Humans rely heavily on the continuation of this process, and thus we rely heavily on mushrooms. Though it may seem that humans live in different worlds and rarely interact, mushrooms have and will play a vital role in human history and existence. More About Mushrooms Sources:

  • Mexcaltitan Island (Helo’) | Hoelle Lab

    Image from Goleta History Home About Projects Mexcaltitan Island (Helo') Prior to European contact, this site was known as Helo' which translates to ‘The Water’ and was home to hundreds of Chumash people. It was one of the most populated sites in the entire Goleta Valley located on an island which reminded the Spanish explorers of a similar location in Mexico known as Mexcaltitan Island. This name has stuck all the way through to today and underwent various changes in use from agriculture to an airstrip. Since then, it has fallen under the ownership of Southern California Gas Company and much of the island has been flattened but can still be seen when driving by the airport. 1542 Cabrillo Expedition, during the time of the 1st European exploration of this site, there were several hundreds of Chumash living on the 64 acre island which is one of the largest Native American settlements in California. 1782 Martinez Expedition, No presidio had been established due to thousands of Chumash being present and the Spanish’s unwillingness to try and relocate them​. 1769 Portolá Expedition, Spanish soldiers were very impressed by the site which reminded them of Mexcaltitan Island of Mexico which gave the site the name it goes by today. At the time the island was covered in oak trees and held a hundred houses which made up two large villages. 1788 There were significant ecological changes as all trees were cut down to allow room for agriculture fields. 1861 Grazing animals quickly ate away at most vegetation in the area which, after heavy rainfall, led to a flooding of the area and the creation of a salty marsh. 1867 John Moore purchased the island and used it as a bean field which he later built a house on to serve as his sister’s new home. 1928 At this time, the first well known aerial photograph of the island was taken which showed the water level to be very shallow, unlike what had been reported by explorers in the past. Drawing by sailor named Pantoja on the 1782 Martinez Expedition: Image from Goleta History The first known aerial photograph of the island taken in 1928: Image from Goleta History 1941 The United States government issued a program which would call for the building of 250 new airports. Thomas M. Storke was the man who got Santa Barbara to become a part of this initiative which led to the drastic altering of the island. Much of the land mass was used to level the surrounding area to serve as runways which involved disrupting buried Chumash remains. 1943 The remains of a woman were found near a large whale bone which was ornately decorated with beads and abalone. Following this more of the island was removed to allow for the construction of Ward Memorial Highway. TODAY The site of what was formerly known as Helo’ is under the current ownership of Southern California Gas Company & Goleta Sanitary District and sits very close to the entrance of the Santa Barbara Airport. Special Research Collections, UCSB Library, University of California Santa Barbara May 20, 2003 Flight ID: PW-SB-14 Back to the Map Sources: Johnson, John R. “The Rancherias of Mescaltitan: Chumash History and Sociopolitical Organization in the Goleta Valley.” GOLETA SLOUGH PREHISTORY: Insights Gained from a Vanishing Archaeological Record, vol. 4, SANTA BARBARA MUS OF NAT, 2020, pp. 17–51. Contributions in Anthropology. ( ) Modugno, Tom, et al. “Mescaltitlan Island.” Goleta History, 19 Oct. 2014. ( )

  • Scavenger Hunts | Hoelle Lab

    Home Database Maps Guidelines Engaging Ebot IV ETHNOBOTANY PROJECT DIY: Scavenger Hunt Easy Scavenger Hunt I learned through experience that scavenger hunts for beginner outdoorspeople and city-people need to assume that participants have very little knowledge of the outdoors. Wander the park, take your time! Please use different plants/animals for each question. Have fun! Name as many plants in the park as you can (try for 4)! Close your eyes: describe 2 different noises you hear. Without looking, what are they? Find 2 flowering plants. Draw their flowers here. Come to me and ask for an edible plant. What does it taste like? Compare it to something you have eaten before. Find a plant with a hairy stem or hairy leaves. What do the hairs feel like (soft, prickly, etc)? What do you think the hairs are for? Find an insect. Draw its eyes here. Find 2 kinds of plants that smell good when you crush them. Describe their smells. Take a few minutes and watch a single bird that is in the park. Follow it carefully without scaring it. Take note of what it’s doing. Write down some questions you have about its behavior. Come back to the backpacks. Lay down on the grass and close your eyes. What can you smell from that level? NOT So Easy Scavenger Hunt My first attempt at a scavenger hunt for beginners was a huge fail because it was far too complex. So if you have some more advanced naturalists (not super knowledgable , but also not beginners), try this one on for size.

  • Growing Your Own Mushrooms! | Hoelle Lab

    Home About Projects Growing Your Own Edible Mushrooms Image by Jaap Straydog Researching human interactions with mushrooms put me in the mood to grow my own! I purchased two mushroom kits from different brands, Dave’s Mushrooms on Amazon and Back to the Roots, and watched them grow! I felt it was important that not only do I talk about human connection to nature through mushroom education and research, but actually through growing and consuming my own mushrooms. I’ve documented my thoughts and feelings during the process and to determine where the source of my own mycophobia stems from. ​ First impression: Both kits were intimidating. I did not want to touch them too much as I feared that I would become ill from breathing in the spores, a definitely irrational fear. I had to cut the plastic cover to begin watering the substrate and caught a glimpse of what the mushrooms would be growing on. It was slightly terrifying. Pre-growth: I had to mist both kits daily with purified water and keep them in indirect light. At first I feared that the kit was not working as I am extremely impatient and was hoping for results within 2 days. I diligently watered the mushrooms until I saw results. First day of growth: I first noticed a fluffy, white blob in the center of the mushroom log. I did not know what it was until I saw a small brown cap, the beginnings of the mushroom! It was an exciting moment, to say the least. I came back later in the day and was surprised by the growth. The small caps had begun protruding from the center of the log. Second day of growth : The mushrooms were more well deformed and had begun resembling little stems. They were finally looking like mushrooms! Third day of growth: The mushrooms were huge! They began to have stable caps that fanned out and had visible gills. I showed all my housemates the growth and as I was so amazed! This project was doing so much better than I had expected! Fourth day of growth: The mushrooms had stopped growing, or were growing so slow I didn’t notice. The mushrooms had sprouted from every possible space and had grown into each other. I then harvested the mushrooms and cooked them! One concern of mine was how to tell if the mushrooms were ready to harvest. I looked at many guides to determine the right time to harvest. It was intimidating ripping my oyster mushrooms from their home, but I had to do it. Try this Delicious Recipe: Pan Fried Oyster Mushroom & Green Onion a few of the oyster mushrooms a pinch of salt 1 bunch of green onions 2 cloves of garlic 1 tablespoon of sesame oil Ingredients: Directions: heat up the sesame oil on low heat chop up green onions, garlic, and oyster mushroom toss green onion and garlic into hot pan and cook until fragrant add oyster mushroom and cook until brown and crispy Though simple, this recipe turned out delicious! The mushrooms were chewy and tasted great! The texture was almost like meat as it was slightly tough and chewy. I was slightly scared of using mushrooms that I grew to cook with, but they turned out amazing! I will definitely make this recipe as it turned out so well and is so simple! More About Mushrooms Sources: Valverde ME, Hernández-Pérez T, Paredes-López O. Edible mushrooms: improving human health and promoting quality life. Int J Microbiol. 2015;2015:376387. doi:10.1155/2015/376387 (n.d.). Retrieved from Blagodatski A, Yatsunskaya M, Mikhailova V, Tiasto V, Kagansky A, Katanaev VL. Medicinal mushrooms as an attractive new source of natural compounds for future cancer therapy. Oncotarget. 2018;9(49):29259–29274. Published 2018 Jun 26. doi:10.18632/oncotarget.25660 Ritchie, Hannah, Reay, S., D., Higgins, & Peter. (2018, April 23). Potential of Meat Substitutes for ClimateChange Mitigation and Improved Human Health in High-Income Markets. Retrieved from Kowalski, K. (2019, December 3). Recycling the dead. Retrieved from L. Hauben, personal communication, February 29 2020

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