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Edible Ojai Ventura Fall 2016 : Page 34

Pomegranate Primer Approximately 40 acres of pomegranates grown commercially in Ventura County Pomegranates aren’t a primary crop here, but there is an important Ventura County link. S. John Chater was passionate about pomegranates and bred them for decades at his Camarillo home. His goal: To create new varieties that would produce fruit in mild weather. Here are some he’s credited with developing in the 1980s: Blaze: Medium-size, tart, shiny, bright red Golden Globe: Very large, honey-sweet, golden-yellow Green Globe: Large, sweet, green-skinned Phoenicia: Large semi-tart Rosamia: Scarlet, sweet, soft-seeded Though Chater passed away in 2001, the original trees are still alive in Camarillo, says his grandson, John Chater, who breeds pomegranates as a doctoral student in the Department of Botany and Plant Sciences at UC Riverside. ½ cup seeds 72 Calories in Pomegranates are rich in in vitamins C and K, folate and potassium “Small studies seem to suggest that drinking pomegranate juice might lower cholesterol. It’s also thought that pomegranate juice may block or slow the buildup of cholesterol in the arteries of people who are at higher risk of heart disease.” —Mayo Clinic 34 Fall 2016 Sources: Henry S. Gonzales, Agricultural Commissioner for the County of Ventura; New York Times ; California Rare Fruit Growers; HortScience, American Society for Horticultural Science; Mary Reilly, chef, publisher and editor in chief of Edible Pioneer Valley , The Kitchn blog. edible ojai & ventura county

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