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Seaside Banana Garden

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BUSINESS
May 2, 1995 | LEO SMITH, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
La Conchita's Seaside Banana Garden is back in business after shutting down its retail operation for more than a month, as the town dug out from mudslides created by heavy winter rains. Mud destroyed homes and caused other damage throughout the small coastal town, located along the Ventura Freeway just south of Santa Barbara County. A threat of further damage led to the closure of La Conchita to non-residents from March 4 to April 15, effectively cutting off the garden's retail business.
ARTICLES BY DATE
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 1, 1998
Re "Yes, There Are No Bananas: Plantation Operator, Unable to Meet Rent, Uproots a Dream," Feb. 10. I think the closing of Seaside Banana Gardens in La Conchita is very sad, not just for the beauty of the area but for the forcing out of business of a man, Doug Richardson, who appears to be the kind of person government always wants Californians to be like. Through no fault of his own--and, it appears, with no help from anyone--a good man is put in a dreadful situation. Surely a company like La Conchita Ranch Co. should be helping Mr. Richardson to get back on his feet.
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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 1, 1998
Re "Yes, There Are No Bananas: Plantation Operator, Unable to Meet Rent, Uproots a Dream," Feb. 10. I think the closing of Seaside Banana Gardens in La Conchita is very sad, not just for the beauty of the area but for the forcing out of business of a man, Doug Richardson, who appears to be the kind of person government always wants Californians to be like. Through no fault of his own--and, it appears, with no help from anyone--a good man is put in a dreadful situation. Surely a company like La Conchita Ranch Co. should be helping Mr. Richardson to get back on his feet.
BUSINESS
May 2, 1995 | LEO SMITH, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
La Conchita's Seaside Banana Garden is back in business after shutting down its retail operation for more than a month, as the town dug out from mudslides created by heavy winter rains. Mud destroyed homes and caused other damage throughout the small coastal town, located along the Ventura Freeway just south of Santa Barbara County. A threat of further damage led to the closure of La Conchita to non-residents from March 4 to April 15, effectively cutting off the garden's retail business.
NEWS
November 29, 1990
* Seaside Banana Garden--Offers 50 varieties of locally grown bananas. 6823 Santa Barbara Ave., Ventura. Call 643-4061. * Ventura Farmers Market--Wide variety of locally grown fruits and vegetables, plus produce and other goods brought in by growers from surrounding counties. 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Wednesdays at Main Street and Mills Road, and 8:30 a.m. to noon Saturdays at Santa Clara and Figueroa streets in Ventura. Call 529-6266.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 19, 1991 | CHRISTOPHER PUMMER, TIMES STAFF WRITER
As his banana harvests grew ever more bountiful, Doug Richardson silenced skeptics who claimed the subtropical fruit could not be grown in the continental United States. But in each of the past five winters, the pioneering farmer harbored a fear that a rare frost would descend on his Seaside Banana Garden and prove the naysayers correct. In December, one of the century's worst freezes enveloped California.
NEWS
August 18, 1994 | JANE HULSE, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
If you think a banana is, well, just a banana, a gentle eating adventure, take a drive up to La Conchita and peel yourself a Blue Java, a Brazilian or a delicately diminutive Ladyfinger. Here, on the edge of this tiny beach community, sits the Seaside Banana Garden, the first commercial banana plantation in the continental United States. But you'll find few of the bananas typically found in grocery stores.
NEWS
June 18, 1988 | LINDA FRENCH and DR, JESSIE BAER
Southern California has many microclimates, but on the whole, the area is very good for growing bananas at home. Most edible banana varieties are the result of mixed parentages of Musa .
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
July 9, 1990 | PSYCHE PASCUAL, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Along the Ventura Freeway near the Ventura and Santa Barbara county line lies a small tropical paradise that for years has astonished weather analysts and farmers. Tucked between the ocean and 300-foot-high bluffs is a place called La Conchita, the small seaside community that is also the home of the only commercial banana plantation in the continental United States. There 10,000 banana trees are fanned by balmy ocean breezes, basking in an island of frost-free weather.
FOOD
August 8, 1991 | ROSE DOSTI, TIMES STAFF WRITER
A salsa made with banana? "It was a fun and crazy thing I threw together," says Michael Hutchings, chef-owner of Michael's Waterside restaurant in Santa Barbara. Hutchings first made the salsa when he planned a dinner for banana professional Doug Richardson, operator of the Richardson Seaside Banana Garden in Los Conchitas below Santa Barbara.
NEWS
February 20, 1991 | CHRISTOPHER PUMMER, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
As his banana harvests grew ever more bountiful, Doug Richardson silenced skeptics who claimed that the fruit could not be grown in the continental United States. But in each of the past five winters, the pioneering Ventura County farmer harbored a fear that a rare frost would destroy his Seaside Banana Garden, which banana experts say is the only commercial banana plantation in the continental United States.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 7, 1995 | JANE HULSE, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
Want to give a slice of Ventura County to someone on your holiday list? There are gift ideas right here under your nose--things made here, grown here, or simply fun, even adventurous things to do. For the high-altitude types on your list, how about a sunrise hot-air balloon ride over the hills of Simi Valley and Moorpark? Newbury Park-based Hot Air Balloon Adventure charges $125 per person for this lofty hourlong experience. They top it off with post-flight champagne. Call (800) 346-6444.
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