Chris Honadleâ€™s Amor Mi Vida Farm specializes in succulents. (photos by John Gregory)
Farmer’s Market offers a wide selection
What’s going on in Scripps Ranch? Well, one thing is certain: the Scripps Ranch Farmer’s Market is always underway from 9 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. each Saturday at 10380 Spring Canyon Road, in the Innovations Academy parking lot. The market hosts an average of 60 vendors each Saturday. Meet three of these vendors who can normally be found there each week:
‘Kind of like sea creatures’
Succulents are not cacti, but they don’t need much water and they thrive in a dry environment. Still, they need care.
Dave and Chris Honadle own Amor Mi Vida Farm in Ramona, and they have a booth at the Scripps Ranch Farmer’s Market each week. They specialize in succulents. The very word means “holding water,” according to Chris, who speaks of the plants almost as if speaking about pets.
“They flower all through spring and through late summer,” she said. “They usually (have) very unique kinds of flowers … They are kind of like sea creatures. Some of them are very crazy looking.”
Amor Mi Vida Farm displays a wide selection of succulents in colorful pots at the market each week, along with a few cacti. Their potted plants range from $5 up to $80.
“I like the crazy kind of plants. The ones you can’t find in a lot of places,” Chris said.
Succulents are easier to take care of than regular plants, she said. Their soil should be dry. Amor Mi Vida Farm uses a type of soil that has a lot of sand around it for the succulents. It’s “very well drained soil.”
“Succulents hold water … A lot of the petals, or the leaves, will be very bulbous and thick, holding the water in,” Chris explained. “You barely have to water them. They like really dry soil. They do great in our climate.”
She suggests plant owners water them every week to every two weeks, depending on where the plant is located.
“They don’t like direct sunlight, necessarily,” she said. “They like to be in a filtered light or partial sun.”
Most of the customers who buy succulents take them home and replant them, Chris said. Amor Mi Vida Farm has a wide variety of sizes. A lot of residents come in just to rebuild their yards, she added.
Amor Mi Vida Farm can prepare custom pots or special orders. They can also handle weddings and fill custom pots for other special events. The business has a contract to provide arrangements for the tables of the Chick-fil-A in Carmel Mountain Ranch.
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A fun and simple art studio, iCreate offers a chance for customers to be creative with no pressure.
Ash Saad and D Amin are the husband and wife team who opened the iCreate studio last February in the heart of Poway. D is the artist in the family, according to Ash.
Customers can paint their own pottery, paint on canvas, hand-build their own clay piece, build a glass fusion project, piece together a mosaic or choose colored glass for a fusion project. This is a classic activity for children, adults or entire families.
The painting on canvas part is uncomplicated, but the finished artwork can be exceptionally colorful.
iCreate’s Ash Saad at the Farmer’s Market.
“We have a catalog of about 100 designs,” Ash explained, adding that customers can choose their favorite. “Then we have transfer paper to transfer your drawing on to the canvas. Then we have step-by-step (instructions) that teach you how to do it one step at a time.”
The mosaics include a special glass that customers may select and attach to a wooden plaque to form a design. The finished piece can be hung in the home afterward.
The glass fusion includes a special colored glass. When the glass pieces are put together to make a design, they are fired in a kiln and the heat fuses the pieces together.
At the studio’s Scripps Ranch Farmer’s Market booth, iCreate has a table set up for customers to try their hand at painting a ceramic piece. iCreate will take it to its studio and fire up the glaze in the kiln later. You can pick up your shiny, finished work at the following week’s Farmer’s Market.
iCreate offers classes, art sessions or a room for an entire art party. Visit icreatearts.com.
Full of taste but gluten free
Adrian and Tiffany Collins built their business out of love for their children. Four out of five of their kids had various food sensitivities. Therefore, Tiffany spent about three years developing the correct flour blend so their children could enjoy baked goods. Now, the couple’s business, Tiffany’s Kitchen, is in its third year offering their brand of gluten free baked goods and ingredients to others.
“We bake everything out of our home kitchen,” Adrian said. “We’re permitted through the county to do that.”
They sell their products at nine farmer’s markets each week, including the Scripps Ranch Farmer’s Market each Saturday. They also distribute their products to a few coffee shops.
“We started it because our kids had a lot of food sensitivity issues and we wanted to make really good, nutritious, delicious baked goods for them,” Adrian explained. “We couldn’t find it in the stores, so we decided to make our own flour blend, baking mixes and baked goods using all gluten free, sprouted grains, all organic ingredients. We don’t use any refined sugar. … So, we do zucchini-apple bread, banana bread, scones, cookies, granola and our baking mixes.”
Tiffany spent a lot of time researching ingredients, then spent hours baking. It was a lot of trial and error, Adrian said. She was testing gluten free flour and starch combinations just to get the right consistency, flavor and texture. Once she perfected the flour blend, the two were able to develop their special recipes.
“We don’t skimp out on cheap ingredients,” Adrian said. “Everything is sprouted grains. It’s organic ingredients, we try to source local farmers for the vegetables, the fruit, the zucchini, the apples.”
Tiffany’s Kitchen uses only gluten free grains: sprouted brown rice, sprouted millet and sprouted oats. Sprouted grains go through an extra process of soaking the grain before it’s milled into flour, Adrian said. That breaks down the phytic acid in the grain. Phytic acid binds to nutrients in our bodies. When grains are sprouted, it’s broken down and the body doesn’t have to try to fight to digest that — it’s easier on the digestion. It’s more nutrient-rich, Adrian explained.
Adrian brings plenty of samples to the Scripps Ranch Farmer’s Market each week. He said a lot of people have had bad experiences with the way gluten free products taste. He’s confident that the products from Tiffany’s Kitchen will win customers over once they get a chance to savor them. Visit tiffanys-kitchen.com.