Southeast Gardens | CHARLESTON Farmers Market, Sights | Travelogue


(cicadas buzzing) (light, fun music) Lyndia dropped me at the Pensacola
airport for a connecting flight to Charleston, where I would be staying for
two nights with another dear friend named Lynda. Charleston is a port city
and surrounded by water and was in full bloom, and I was enchanted before I even
got to their house. First order of business, a family portrait with Ravi and
dogs Stewart and Owen Linda rescued from Los Angeles shelters. I admired a dried
flower art piece by Beth Curry. Inside, fresh sunflowers greeted me in the guest
room. Next morning, I had a glass of water with apple cider vinegar. An hour later, I
was given a smoothie. Off to a healthful start. My visit coincided with the
17-year emergence of the cicadas. The buzz is actually the sound of cicadas
mating. Males use a special organ in their bodies to create the sound
attracting females. They gather in trees to produce a much larger sound. Founded
in 1670, and defined by its cobblestone streets. Antebellum houses, and
horse-drawn carriages, Charleston is the oldest and largest city in South
Carolina. And there are churches, lots of churches. Our first destination was the Charleston
farmers market in Marion square, the place to be on Saturday, where I
discovered a thriving local food movement. My first sampling was raw milk
cheddar cheese. Church bells mingled with the live band
as I sank my teeth into the creamy goodness. I’m Celeste Albers. Tell me about your
farm. We are at Rose Bank Plantation on Wadmalaw Island, which is south of
Charleston. We have Jersey cows, all hundred-percent Jersey cows, with their
horns. We milk them once a day. They are on pasture 24/7.
We actually milk them in the pasture. We have a portable milking parlor, so we
go to them.They’re not spending their time traveling to a barn. And they’re not
confined at all. It’s legal to sell raw milk.. Yes, in South Carolina it is legal. We
have to have a permit. All of our processes have been approved by South
Carolina DHEC. Our milk is regularly tested. It’s really strict. You can’t have
anything in there. That’s the idea with raw milk is to make a clean product that
you don’t have to heat up to kill bacteria, because when you do that, you
kill all the good stuff too. And then we don’t homogenize, the cream is on the top.
And our cows are eating grass and hay so you have all the good conjugated
linoleic acids and the good proteins and fats in there that’s really healthy. And
they’re finally starting to do a lot more tests to show how good dairy fat is
really good for you. You don’t have a little cup I could taste it? Sure,
yeah! These are Anson Mills products Glen
Robert started Anson Mills right here in Charleston. He was a manager for Anson
Restaurant. He couldn’t get grits for his restaurant that were as good as what
his grandmother used to cook for him in Virginia. Part of the reason is the corn
wasn’t as good as it was then. Now we have hybrids and GMO’s and the corn
doesn’t have the flavor, and then also all the modern grits are really
processed. They take out all of the germ and all of the oil, so they’re shelf-stable, but they don’t have any flavor. So we started growing heirloom corns for
him and helped him get his first mill. He actually started milling grits in the
back room of the restaurant for service that night. And he just had a passion for
it, so now all he does is mill grain. He ships grits and rice and peas all
over the world. I think I should get some grits and take them home to LA and cook
them. Yeah! Okay, I’ll take one of those. Okay. Oh, and we get a recipe, okay. Now that’s a sun hat. All my Southern
favorites were there, from tomatoes, to okra, corn, and watermelon, and I wanted to
buy them all. Crickets, not so much. But fresh lima
beans? Oh yes! Almost anything you would want is here. These eggplants were adorable. How much are your eggs? $6 Fresh-cut flowers
and produce from local family farms, to art, and photography, loads of prepared foods, goat milk soaps,
and body scrubs, to pickles. So you like the spicy pickles? Yeah. Oh yeah! We bought them before. You can even get your
garden soil tested. HI, I’m Nancy Wieller. I’m a member of the master gardeners of the Charleston, South Carolina area. There’s a group of us that are working on a wonderful butterfly garden. Part of the Super Land Trust used to preserve our land in South Carolina. Well that sounded good to us, so on the way back to the car,
we decided to visit this butterfly garden located in Mount Pleasant, across
the water from the historic district. Not terribly easy to find, behind the
Public Works building, lies a wooded trail to a dog park, which lies adjacent
to the butterfly garden. Generous donors have provided garden architecture and
seating, and Master Gardeners have planted all the flowers. I photographed
every plant that was blooming, including milkweed for monarchs, but didn’t see
butterflies. Linda and Ravi vowed to return to the dog park with their mutts. Since we were close by, I dropped in unannounced on an old friend from
Capitol Hill that I hadn’t seen in 20 years, since the only other time I’d been
to Charleston. Ravi had to go to work so we stopped back at the house and Lynda
whipped up a fresh salad with my last Yoder’s German yellow tomato I had been
hand-carrying since Los Angeles. Linda and I headed back out to see more
elegant antebellum homes, ornate ironwork, historic buildings, and churches, as the
sun was sinking. We raced to Rainbow Row, a cluster of 13 pastel-painted, Georgian
style, historic row houses dating from 1748 to 1845, decorated with overstuffed
flower boxes. Then we walked on cobblestone streets to Battery Promenade,
lined with more historic homes. The flower-studded promenade overlooks
Charleston Harbor with Fort Sumter in the distance, where the first shots of
the Civil War rang out. We drank in a stunning view of water, and flowers.
Looking back across the street, we marveled at how much upkeep the historic
houses must require, and the constant gawking from tourists. We crossed the street,
walked up the other side, and gawked. I asked Lynda for one more stop,
the fountain at Waterfront Park. Our boys had played in this fountain all those
years ago, which feels so good to children on a steamy hot summer day. (sound of wind and water) (music ends)

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