Starting Sunday, Aug. 11, the Pepperfield Project will be hosting open-farm garden tours followed by "Sunday Dinners on the Farm," family style meals created by Chef Lee Chapman from whatever happens to be harvested from the garden that day.

In spite of a late, cold and record-wet spring, the food gardens at Pepperfield are lush and productive now. Many unusual varieties from the Seed Savers Exchange collection are growing in the garden this year, and visitors will be able to follow the progress of specific vegetables being grown for special "history dinners" planned for later in the fall.

Pepperfield saves all its own seed from both flowers and vegetables, providing other gardeners a chance to see seed-saving strategies in action.

The Sunday dinners also are open to anyone interested in sharing their musical talents or interesting topics of conversation later in the evening.

Trish Bruxvoort Colligan, who recently recorded her new album "Wild Acre" on a Steinway grand piano in the barn at SSE's Heritage Farm, will be singing (minus the Steinway) with her husband, Richard, after dinner Aug. 25, and Sept. 8.

Decorah student Micheal Foster will be at one of the dinners to share his conversation with President Obama about his National History Day project researching the humanitarian mission of the USS Kirk rescuing Vietnamese refugees after the fall of Saigon in 1975.

Host and Pepperfield President David Cavagnaro can always be prompted to share stories from his past as a roving naturalist in the Galapagos Islands and other far corners of the globe.

Members of the community also are encouraged to visit this year's "Edible Landscape" in the courtyard on the north side of Winneshiek Medical Center.

Pepperfield produces over 2000 pounds of produce for the hospital food service each year as well as cut flowers which grace the cafeteria and other places in the hospital.

The garden is designed in part as an example of how home gardens can combine flowers and vegetables in attractive ways. Pepperfield also assists in planting a small special-needs garden for the clients of Spectrum Network, located behind the Depot Outlet.

For further information and reservations, call Pepperfield at 563-382-8833 or email