Tuesday, June 30, 2009

SHARE # 7 - July 3 Delivery and July 6 Pickup

Good morning, farm members!


The growing season is rolling along in the garden. Last week Heather and I picked the first of the peas and we've started adding them to the shares. At the same time, we pulled the last of the spinach for now. There are lots of beautiful head lettuces getting bigger every day. It's a bit of a question for me. Which will happen first, the arrival of heat and potential bolting or the forming of full sized heads? Time will tell.

We currently have our eyes on:
many pea pods
small green raspberries
young squash plants
tomato flowers and tiny tomatoes
itty bitty carrots
dahlia buds
woodchucks! (I welcome your suggestions on these critters.)

So far the woodchuck damage has been small but they have a fondness for eating the flowers. The result is that many things that might be in bloom have been topped off and are now branching but not blooming. Bouquets are a bit questionable this week. On the other hand, the dahlias are just starting to bloom and once they get going we'll have lots of them. We just have to wait and see.

Each week I find that there are surprises in store in the garden. It's just impossible to tell what will be ready or not and what will be over, especially while looking ahead to the following Monday pick up day. I appreciate that you folks have been so flexible.

I am always interested in feedback about the shares. Farming is still so new to me. I know I will never stop learning things and there is so much I don't know. So let me know if there are ways the shares could improve and if there are things you especially appreciate.

Healthy eating,

SHARE # 7 - July 3 Delivery and July 6 Pickup

head lettuce
chard or kale or collards, depending on what's ready that day
radish thinnings to add to your salads
wild peppermint - a very strong flavored mint, great for tea and chopped in tabouli
wild flower bouquet

MINI-SHARES - 2 of these
head lettuce
peppermint (Let me know if this interests you or not.)
snap peas?

Saturday, June 27, 2009

YESTERDAY'S DELIVERY - Friday, June 26, 2009

Good morning, farm folks,

It's bright and sunny for the moment. What a treat!

Yesterday Heather and I did a fair amount of thinning/picking for the shares. We pulled most of the spinach and cut off the leaves for you to eat. Today we will be turning that bed and replanting with basil plants and broccoli seeds. The chard got one more thinning and most of the mini-shares got chard yesterday. The peas were just starting to be ready to pick so some shares got snap peas, some got snow peas and some also got shell peas. There are lots more on the way. We also did another thinning on collards and kale, leaving fewer plants to grow larger leaves. Happily, we found a few more garlic scapes and a new row of cilantro coming in. Plus we decided to pull some of the Upland Cress to add to the herbs. Cress is very peppery in flavor. You could add it to eggs or soup or whatever needs a little extra zip. Use it raw or cooked.

We seem to be in a bit of a mesclun lull. We plan on replanting and there is some, but not a ton at the moment. There are a bunch of head lettuces coming along so that may be the salad green for a bit. We'll see...

Thanks to all for the bags and jars and boxes. Keep it up! We used the very last produce bag yesterday so it's time to get creative.

SHARE # 6 - June 26 Delivery
(I seem to have forgotten to notate the quantities as we picked. oops.)


"baby" spinach - 1 lb
arugula - 1/2 lb?
2 -3 small head lettuces
kale or collards - Breedy's Camden kale, Champion collards, Red and White Russian kale, Red Chidori kale
Snap peas or snow peas
Shell peas (only some shares) Coral and Maestro
garlic scapes, cilantro, Upland cress

Swiss chard - 1 lb.
Russian kale or lettuce


Tuesday, June 23, 2009

FARM SHARE # 6 - June 26 - Delivery and June 29 - Pickup

RED CHIDORI KALE - growing bigger and more beautiful every day.

Hello farm members,

Heather and I seem to be in a good routine with picking the shares. It proceeds easily and the two of us are always thinking ahead to the next picking and what needs to happen for that and beyond. Right now we are organizing our replanting plans. We need to plant more mesclun, arugula, and lettuce and it's also time to start some of the fall crops such as beets, carrots, broccoli, cauliflower and Chinese cabbage. The planting just goes on and on. To tell the truth, I have not noticed any particular lull in the planting. We just keep planting and planting. Our next focus will be weeding, mulching and panting, errr, I mean planting!

The peas are getting fatter every day so one day soon there will be snap peas, shell peas and snow peas. (Which will be ready first, I wonder.) There are tiny tomatoes on the greenhouse tomatoes. The various kale plants are growing fast. The beans of all kinds, green, shell, soy, bush and pole are all looking green and vigorous. On the down side, the woodchucks ate some tomato leaves and 'pruned' the sweet pea plants. And something ate the tops off the first kolrabi planting and some of the annual flowers. Hopefully there will be enough for everyone.

On Monday we thinned the turnips and found some turnips that were filled out as well as plenty of turnip greens. So the Monday full shares got some turnips and the Monday mini-shares got some greens. Cook your turnip greens like any other green, either saute or steam them until tender but not mushy. Many people enjoy a bit of ham hock or bacon added to their turnip greens or you could mix in some of the turnips themselves or some chopped onion or whatever you like. Oh yes, if you get turnips, you can certainly eat the tops as well!




SHARE # 6 - June 26 Delivery and June 29 Pickup

mesclun/baby spinach
lettuce? we are waiting for the next batch to get big...
turnip greens and/or turnips
kale or collards
peas?? these are starting to fill out.
Swiss chard

greens of some kind
lettuce? or mesclun

*We really need bags for greens. Please return your clean dry bags if possible or provide reusable containers if you can.*

See you soon.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

YESTERDAY'S DELIVERY - Friday, June 19, 2009

Dear Farm Members,

Picking and delivery went smoothly once again. (This will never get boring. Everything being fine is ok by me.)
The escarole and head lettuce looked like it wanted to bolt soon so we picked all that looked ready. There will be another round of lettuce ready in a few weeks. Until then, we'll be eating mesclun for our salads.

I am still getting over a strained hip joint but it is getting better. My plan is to avoid all digging for a long time. So a special thank you to Robin Creamer, Nate and Marie Bartlett, Nick and Fritz Mesloh, Tim Richter and as always, Heather Loomis, for all your hard work getting the digging done. Soon we can plant the last of the peppers and the rest of the storage roots and flowers. Yay! Thank you.

Heather has been posting some yummy recipes, including some using turnips, at the recipe part of the blog.

Please remember to return your clean, dry bags and jars. We are already running low on bags.

SHARE # 5 - June 19 Delivery and June 22 Pickup
(Heather and I do weigh your items but these weights are approximate.)

mesclun - 8 oz
head lettuce 2 - 3
arugula - 8 oz
spinach - 1 lb
kale or rapa turnips - around 1 lb
escarole - 10 oz
leeks - 1 lb
white turnips 1 lb
cilantro and dill
garlic scapes 3.5 oz
bouquet - Peonies, Sweet William, Daisies, Yarrow, Lady's Mantle, Veronica, Snapdragons.

MINI-SHARES - 2 of these:
mesclun - 8 oz.
head lettuce - 1
arugula - 8 oz
spinach - 1 lb

and a mini-bouquet


Saturday, June 13, 2009

YESTERDAY'S Delivery - Friday, June 12, 2009

Hello folks,

Yesterday's picking was a bit of a hustle for the picking crew. Because of the recent rains, the plants were splashed with soil and everything needed washing. (LOVE THAT RAIN THOUGH) Plus we did a fair amount of thinning for this picking, good for the garden and tasty tender greens but it takes longer to pick that way. BUT we did finish in time for Heather to get to work and for the shares to be delivered the usual time and the kitchen is nearly cleaned up so things are good.

For those of you who got chard thinnings, I found them relatively easy to prepare. Just put them in a tub of water, cut off their roots, wash again in the salad spinner. Very tender. They cook down alot.

mesclun - 8 oz
head lettuce 1
arugula 7.5 oz
baby greens - 1 lb. chard thinnings plus 1 more of these: kale, mustard, spinach
endive - 2 heads - watch the recipe blog for cooking ideas. I like to saute it with olive oil and garlic.
bouquet - Iris, Peonies, Lady's Mantle, Salvia, Valerian, Kousa Dogwood, Doronicum

MINI-SHARES - 2 of these:
head lettuce
and a mini-bouquet

Enjoy your vegetables and flowers!

Farm Share # 4 - June 12 - Delivery and June 15 - Pickup

Dear Farm Members,

Sorry to be a bit late with this email this week. I was feeling under the weather on Monday and got behind schedule. (all better now)


The peas and fava beans are in bloom. The favas are very interesting. Their flowers look a bit like pea blossums and they are black and white. Odd but attractive. The squashes and bush beans (14 rows!) are up. The tomato plants are in and getting greener and bigger every day. The peppers and eggplant go in this week plus we are planting the fall storage roots: rutabagas, beets, carrots and parsnips. Soon our focus will turn towards weeding and fencing although we've been doing some of these as we go along so it's not TOO weedy out there.

The first Monday picking for pickup members was this week and it was very easy and smooth. The shares were in the stand by 10 and everyone had picked up by 5. I was home that afternoon resting so I actually slept through a bunch of pickups. Good work, folks. Soon I will post a bit about what was in those Monday shares here: http://lastingimpressionscsa.blogspot.com/ (I got behind on posting too!)

I have worked out a system of keeping track of people's preferences and what they get each week. Sometimes the harvest is tiny and needs to be spread over a few weeks. I will try to see that each share gets a share. Also, for the mini-shares, I will try to vary your items from week to week. For example, mesclun one week, head lettuce the next, etc. Of course if there is something you love and want every time it's available, just let me know.

SHARE # 4 - June 12 Delivery and June 15 Pickup

mesclun - starting to include nasturium leaves and marigold flowers.
head lettuce 1-2
baby greens - kale, mustard, chard, spinach - 1-2 of these
leeks - these are small, carryovers from last summer that want to bolt instead of getting bigger.
turnips - some are ready. If you don't get any this time, you will get them in your next share.
garlic scapes? these are just appearing but they grow very quickly. They are the stems and unopened buds of the garlic plants. A nice addition to stirfrys and soup.
endive? - We are still waiting for these to be 'just right'. I want to try blanching them for extra tenderness.
bouquet - Iris, Peonies, Lady's Mantle, Salvia, Valerian, Kousa Dogwood, Snapdragons, whatever is ready.

MINI-SHARES - 2 of these:
head lettuce
garlic chives

and a mini-bouquet

Mini-Share folks: If you let me know a preference by Thursday, I will factor that in to the picking, otherwise it's pot luck. One item will either be mesclun, lettuce or arugula.



Everything went smoothly with our very first pick-up-at-the-farm shares. We were actually done picking and getting the shares out by 10 and everyone had picked up by 5 so that was great!

The shares were essentially the same as what was delivered on Friday except that the leeks have started coming in so I gave the one half share pickup some of those as well as the last of the rhubarb. The minis got a bit of cilantro as well.

Friday, June 5, 2009

TODAYS FARM SHARE # 3 - June 5, 2009 Delivery

Hello folks,

The picking and the delivery went smoothly today. Somehow Heather and I have been able to finish prepping by 11:30 each time. Those of you who get delivery West of town center should know that your share may come as early as 11:30. I hope all the new folks are enjoying their vegies and that everything is in good condition. Thanks for setting out your coolers in easy places. Please remember to leave clean jars and bags if you have them. That way I won't need to keep finding more and more of these.

More on the weeds in your mesclun: Bear in mind that although Heather and I very careful, it is certainly possible for us to make mistakes and include untasty weeds as well as yummy ones. If you are ever uncertain about a particular leaf's edibility, set it aside, call or write, I would be happy to help you identify the item. Most likely it will be something tasty and nutritious, just unfamiliar. Sometime soon I will post to the farm blog with photos of the various items in this year's mesclun mixture. The leaves are beautiful.

This week's mix includes thinnings from Swiss chard, Yukina Savoy (a dark green, thick leaf with a peppery taste), Red and White Russian Kale, kolrabi and spinach. Plus the usual lettuce leaves, mizuna, cress, 2 kinds of arugula and more.


mesclun 1 1/4 #
head lettuce - 1
radishes - 16 - 18
arugula 6 oz.
apple mint
a sprig of Sweet Cicely
baby greens - 2 kinds, about 12 oz each - Winterbor Kale, Red Russian Kale, spinach, Rapa turnips, mustard mix

MINI SHARES - 2 items plus a sprig of Sweet Cicely
head lettuce - 2 small
mesclun - 8 oz
arugula - 6 oz
radishes - 1 bunch
mini bouquet

Monday's pick up shares will be similar. I will post that to the blog only so you don't get overloaded with emails.

I also post photos to facebook. If you happen to have an account there, look for me. I have my preferences set so that everyone can see the farm photos.

Enjoy the weekend.