FARM NEWSLETTER / / WEEK 9
Happy Labor Day weekend all!
This weekend is a big one for all of us, between prepping for everything entailed with starting our youngsters back at school and spending time with family and friends this weekend, we wish you all the best in your adventures!!
The Labor Day schedule is as follows: Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday CSA deliveries will be made as normally scheduled. The normal Monday deliveries will be delivered on Thursday September 5th (instead of Labor Day). If you know that you’ll be out of town, or otherwise unavailable to get your CSA Share we have a few options for you. First, you can offer your CSA share to a colleague, family or friend to pick up on your behalf. We can also switch the delivery site (to any residential site) this week for you if that makes it easier to get your CSA Share. Another option is donating your CSA Share to the food shelf. If you need to make any changes to your delivery this week please let us know 2 days in advance if possible.
This week in the field we are marveling at all the weeds. Sounds silly right? Well, at this time of year they’ve basically taken over but that’s actually not a bad thing… In the beginning of the season weed control is very important because basically every weed outgrows any plants we grow. We need to keep the weeds down to make sure the veggies get their sunshine! Well at this time of the year, having weeds around these plants is a good thing because they act like insulation.
Having the weeds serve a form of insulation has actually extended our season for years, because if there is a light frost the weeds will get it on the top of the plants and the produce won’t get hit nearly as hard (if at all). For example, if there weren’t any weeds and the squash patch got hit by frost, you’d see that reflected in the coloration and holding capacity of the squashes right away. Weeds are not a bad thing at this time of year, they’re just another tool in the arsenal. ;)
An update on Tomatoes, we will continue to add them into the CSA Shares whenever possible. As I’ve mentioned before, I have a chart to track who is getting what kinds of tomatoes and when. While the harvest is still low, we are expecting to be able to get everyone at least 2 weeks of tomatoes this season. It’s not as much as what we were hoping, but this year we are thankful for everything we’ve got.
Onions! Remember when I told you that the hail went through the Zimmerman field and Ben told me it “looks like they got hit with helicopter blades”? Well, they’re recovering and growing well. Onions actually like the cool weather more than the hot dry weather so the re-growth of these onions is happening at an awesome rate!! We expect to have fresh onions in our CSA Shares in 2 or 3 weeks from now! These are fresh onions; different than the dried onions we see in the store. They’re just pulled from the ground and cleaned up, and then we snip off the top portions of the greens where they browned (which is natural, happens every season). We will still be drying onions, but I would guess it’ll be a month before we have dried onions to offer. These are also known as "yunyuns" according to our little peanut!
The Brussel sprouts have started putting on sprouts! They’re nicknamed mini cabbages, and literally resemble tiny little cabbages. They’re so cute! At each leaf that comes off of the stalk, there is a ‘sprout’. They climb all the way from the bottom to the top of the plant, and look really cool! If you’ve never had these fresh before I can assure you that you’re in for a treat! When we get to put them into the shares, we will most likely have to cut them in half because the stalk is so long. It’s a really cool looking plant, one of my favorite to chat about!
If you're interested in purchasing any honey packages make sure to get your order in before we close down the online ordering on Friday September 13th. We will be delivering all of your honey shares at one time again this fall, we are thinking the last week of September. We will communicate that via email in advance, so it won't be a surprise when they come to you in your CSA Shares.
If you'd like to order Apple or Fall Shares please get your order in by September 13th because we won't be able to add anymore shares after that point due to planning purposes. This will also be communicated via email when your delivery will be coming to you. Thanks!!
This week in your CSA Share, you can expect: Kohlrabi, Buttercup Squash, Broccoli, Cauliflower/ Cabbage, and ROMA TOMATOES!
This is our second week with Kohlrabi this season, and I’ve had a lot of great feedback thus far. We really enjoy these, they’re versatile and can be used in so many recipes. If you don’t like following a recipe, try peeling the kohlrabi, cutting it into strips, tossing with olive oil and salt and then baking until crisp. They make wonderful French fries! A lot of people just peel them and slice them, adding salt and pepper. They are crisp and crunchy, easy to enjoy :)
Buttercup squash is one of the classic squash varieties. It’s dark green, and has a very thick orange flesh. These squash can be kept for months if kept in proper conditions: a cool dark place that is not wet. If your squash is too hard to cut in half (to get the seeds out before baking it), try putting it in the microwave for a couple of minutes and that’ll make it a lot easier to cut through. Some people cook their squash in the microwave start to finish (but I wouldn’t do that if you’re planning on stuffing the squash with anything). If you’re not stuffing it, go ahead and try the microwave trick. It takes about a quarter of the time in the microwave as it does the oven.
Broccoli! I mentioned this last week that the first broccoli planting and the second planting are being harvested at the same time, although they were planted many weeks apart! So, this was actually supposed to be included in a couple of weeks, but it’s ready now so please enjoy! Remember we soak the broccoli to get the worms out (if there are any). FYI we have been seeing a lot less pests in the field than usual at this time of year. Ben and I have talked through it and we think that it’s because of the heavy rain we’ve gotten the past month or so. It’s knocking the larva off of the plants, which is helpful for us because of course we don’t want to share our produce with the bugs.
Cauliflower and Cabbage!! For this week and next week, we will be alternating the cauliflower and cabbage like we did the last couple of weeks with broccoli and cabbage. Nothing grows at the same rate in the field, so if we selectively harvest the larger heads of cauliflower or cabbage, it will get you a better value in the long run. Whomever gets cauliflower this week, will get cabbage next week and vice versa.
Tomatoes! We talked about this above too. We are very thankful we have any tomatoes to share at all after these hail storms. This week we can actually commit to getting them to everyone though, which is amazing!! Roma tomatoes are known for their lower water content. They make wonderful sauce tomatoes because they don’t take as long to cook down (because of lesser water content). Some people ask for Romas specifically for making salsa because these don’t need to be cooked down as fast. They’re also ideal for chopped tomatoes because their seed cavity is long and thin and much smaller comparatively to the traditional large tomatoes. We hope you can find a way to enjoy them!
Have a fun and safe holiday weekend!!
~The Farmer’s Wife