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814-Lancaster Farming, Saturday, August 14, 1993
These are a few of the carvings that Al Consoli will demonstrate during his work
shop at the Berks County Harvest Show.
And Centerpieces From
Fruits , Vegetables
LOU ANN GOOD
Lancaster Fanning Staff
LEES PORT (Berks Co.)
With a few kitchen knives, a veget
able peeler, ice pick, and a knarler,
Al Consoli carves works of art
from fruits and vegetables.
“It’s simple to team. You need
no special skills, ” Consoli says of
his fruit and vegetable carving.
He's planning to teach others
how to carve during the Berks
County Harvest Show scheduled
for Friday, August 20. The Show
continues into Saturday with many
other lectures, demonstrations and
Consoli said that he became
interested in vegetable carving
after he went on several cruises
and admired the intricate food
carvings aboard. After a brief
introduction on the intricacies of
carving. Consoli started
He became hooked on perfect
ing his skill and purchased several
books on the subject Now, he
deviates from the instructions to
improvise his own designs such as
a penguin and Daffy Duck, made
from egg plants.
Trial and error taught him the
tricks of the trade. He will share
those tricks with the audience at
the Harvest Show.
He will show how an ice pick
can be used to expertly insert the
“clove” eyes of a penguin and how
toothpicks can be used and dis
guised when making a bouquet of
Most of the carvings work best
when the produce is kept at room
“It it’s too cold, it’s too brittle
and it will fall tq pieces," Consoli
said as he carved a candy cane
from a turnip and a red beet
Consoli said that he saves frag
ments from his projects and uses
them in other pieces for garnishing
or for coloring. For example, a
sliver of a red beet brushed across a
rose carved from a turnip changed
its appearance into a delicate pink
Oval-shaped potatoes are good
not only to baking but also to
many of Consoli’s projects. He
uses the brown-skinned-side of the
potato as a base to many projects
and the white side for flowers and
animals. The trunk of apalmtreeis
carved from a carrot its*palm
leaves from a green pepper. Stuck
in a mound of a potato, the palm
tree looks as if it is growing in its
natural habitat of sand.
Apples form the base for the
perfect long-necked swan. Consoli
is adept as he takes a few slices
here and there to form the wings of
the swan. Dipped into lemon juice,
the swan will stay fresh looking for
Spring onions slivered into
pom-pom shapes and dyed with
vegetable dyes appear as red, yel
low, green, and pink flowers in an
arrangement using a squash or egg
plant as the vase. Daises are
formed front turnips and carrots.
While some men send their
wives roses for special occasions,
Consoli gives his wife one almost
every morning for breakfast.
That’s when he eats a grapefruit or
orange, and from the peels he
forms a rose to present to his wife.
“That’s one of the easiest pro
jects to do.” he said. Roses made
from red beets and from turnips are
one of hardest since the vegetables
are quite firm and difficult to
“It’s a lot of work. It takes hours
to make a display,” said Consoli,
who insists that he is not a patient
person when it comes to anything
else that he does.
But, Consoli will spend hours
going to “SO stores” in search of
the right shape eggplant or for the
turnip with the right feel. And. he
works many more hours carving
out displays that have been used as
centerpieces for parties at country
clubs and weddings.
Consoli taught a class at a previ
ous Harvest Show.
“It’s hard work and I got tired of
being on my feet all day. I didn’t
want to do it again, but they
insisted that I must come back due
to popular demand whatever
that means,” Consoli said.
In addition to Consoli’s lecture
on making garnishes and center
pieces from fruits and vegetables,
Sheryl Lyn Henry will describe
plants with natural repellants.
Citrosa is the newest horticul
tural breakthrough. The plant
naturally repels mosquitos without
harming them. The green plant is
easy to grow and reaches a heighth
of four to five feet. One citrosa
plant controls mosquitoes, in
approximately 100 square feet
The plant repels aphids and other
If you have a problem with
fleas, Henry said a pennyroyal
plant will cause the fleas to flee.
For insect control in the garden or
flower bed. plant chives next to
any plant you want to protect from
Santolina is an aromatic plant. A
few sprigs placed among clothing
will repel moths. Mint leaves will
repel ants, beetles, and cabbage
catepillars when planted near
tomatoes and cabbage.
Some of the plants are natural
remedies for aches, pains and
“Grow the lavender herb and
use it as an antiseptic for insect
bites and to keep pests away.”
Feverfew can be used for sto
“There is a whole gamut of
plants that effectively control
insects or can be used for health
purposes,” Henry said. She will
have several specimens for sale.
Workshops will be held on
pruning and composting. Creating
a Wildflower Meadow will be
taught by Dr. David Sanford, pro
fessor of horticulture at Penn State
For those who are serious about
completing a project, several
workshops are offered for a fee.
For a $3O fee and pre
registration. you can participate in
the workshop on Making a Fresh
and Dried Kitchen Herbal Wreath,
taught by Ellen Specter Platt of
Meadow Lark Flower and Herb
For $2O and pre-registration,
learn to make a flower arrange
ment taught by Eugene Burkhart,
florist and Philadelphia Flower
For $ 13.95 and pre-registration,
Sara Hess, master gardener and
florist, will teach you to make a
dried rye heart-shaped wreath with
A special Children’s Comer
workshop teaches children under
12 to plant a cutting, make an orna
ment, and other children’s
Retail sales include plants,
perennials, potting mix, dried
flowers, florist supplies, bulbs,
tubers, shrubs, herbs. T-shirts and
The Harvest Show includes
competition for a blue ribbon in the
(Turn to Pag* BIS)
See your nearest
Dealer for Dependable
ROl, Rte. 934
RAW Equipment Co.
35 East Willow Street
George N. Gross, Inc.
R.D. 2, Dover, PA
Rt. 283 • Rheem’s Exit
R.D. 3, Box 13
Honey Brook, PA
Dependable Motor Co.
East Main Street
Honey Grove, PA
Norman D. Clark
& Son, Inc.
Honey Grove, PA
Ford New Holland, Inc.
Rt. 26 East
Bridgeton, NJ. .
Leslie 6. Fogg, Inc.
Canton & Stow Creek
HI, „ II I
Owen Supply Co.
Broad Street &
103 Cemetery Street
New Holland, PA
A.B.C. Groff, Inc.
110 South Railroad
C.J. Wonsidler Bros.
C.J. Wonsidler Bros.
Charles S. Snyder, Inc.
West Grove, PA
S.G. Lewis & Son, Inc.
R.D. 2, Box 66
Smith Tractor &
15 Hllcrest Ave.