Rio Vista – Tortilla fossils

photo 1

Hello Garden Friends,

photo 2Today at Rio Vista we made edible fossils out of corn flour. This gluten free geology lesson started out with a chat about how we are all brothers and sisters – all coming from a common ancestor. Some have green eyes, some have black hair, some are born with six toes! The differences between us are what make us special and sometimes these differences give us an advantage that we can pass down to our children. “Well,” I said “plants are all related too! – all starting with algae”

The fossils we find tell us when certain plants and animals started appearing on this earth. By photo 3approximating the age of the rocks the fossils are found in, we can see which came first and when.

Next, I had them wash their hands and find a leaf while I prepared the dough:

1 cup water, 1 cup flour, 1 teaspoon salt

Next the students rolled out a bit of dough, pressed the leaf into the tortilla, and lined up in front of my cast iron so we could seal the fossil in place. Then, Presto! A tasty tortilla fresh off the grill.

Until next week,

-Jeff Mailes


Jeff Mailes

Jeff Mailes is a garden designer and environmental educator working out of Woodland Hills, CA. A Los Angeles County Master Gardener and UC Davis Alumni, Jeff earned his B.S. in Environmental Resource Science in 2012 and has been growing edibles and natives for the past 6 years. Jeff's passion for plants and garden education has led him to school gardens from Los Angeles to Sacramento and all the way up to Portland, Oregon. Now familiar with ecosystems across the West Coast, Jeff has settled back home and works to bring people together over food and inspire the next generation of earth stewards to leave it better than they found it. When not writing about himself in the third person, Jeff enjoys singing with his guitar, going on camping and hiking excursions, and tossing a frisbee around with his friends.

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