CSA – Week #12

Yup, purple cauliflower

We hope everyone had a fun and relaxing Labor Day weekend!  We celebrate few holidays here on the farm during the season…well, celebrate in the sense to taking time off…and on Labor Day we labored indeed, harvesting zukes and cukes, beans, and a seemingly endless quantity of field and greenhouse tomatoes.  Today, we grabbed carrots, kale, chard, and some salad mix in a light rain.  It’s certainly not all work around here, though, especially since my cousin, Gulliver, was visiting us for the weekend.  He lives down in Washington D.C., and amazingly, this was his first time up to the farm.  He chipped right in and helped us harvest the veggies mentioned above, and he and I also enjoyed some down time on Sunday, specifically a visit to Wolf’s Neck State Park over in Freeport for a little hiking and later dinner in Portland’s Old Port.  I took him back to the Jetport this morning just after harvest.  Thanks for your help, Gull!  Also, a big “thank you” to CSA member Sue Lassele for harvesting help last Friday!

Labor Day laborers Gulliver, Sonya, and Claire

And the changes just keep on comin’.  Alas, a departure, not an arrival (no baby yet, folks!)  Andrew’s last day on the farm was Saturday, and we’re taking a deep breath and gearing up to finish the season without our ace apprentice.  Thanks in advance to CSA member and friend o’ the farm, Tonya Watson, who will be taking over the Friday afternoon Lewiston/Auburn delivery duties (wholesale orders to Axis and the weekly CSA share pick-up at Bates) for the rest of the season.  I’ll be coming down to Portland for the Saturday markets for the next few weeks, too.  This season has been very successful thus far, and a considerable amount of that success has been due to Andrew’s hard work and dedication.  He’s had a hand in just about every aspect of the farm, from the spring sowing through the planting and weeding of mid-summer and on into the big harvests of recent weeks.  He’ll make a helluva farmer someday if he chooses to walk down that path.  Many thanks, Andrew, and good luck to you!

The Summit Springs Farm CSA share for week #12 includes the following:

2 lb bag of potatoes
1 cucumber
2 lbs of zucchini and/or summer squash
1 lb bag of beans (green or Dragon’s Lingerie)
2 lb bag of carrots
1 sweet onion
1 bulb of garlic
1 pint of husk cherries
CHOOSE ONE: 1/2 lb bag of salad mix -OR- 1 lb bag of broccoli
CHOOSE ONE: bunch of kale -OR- bunch of chard
Up to 10 lbs (!!) of beefsteak and heirloom tomatoes
All the 2nd tomatoes you can carry away!!

Dragon’s what?!  (I like to call them The Dragon’s Underpants.)  It’s a bean, of course, a beautiful bean that can be eaten fresh or shelled once the beans have grown a bit larger.  These are fresh, so prepare and consume them just as you would green beans.  This is the first season we’ve grown them, and the flavor is wonderful!  Also, enjoy the first of the fall carrots.  We planted a few colorful varieties this season to liven things up!

And…tomatoes!  Lots and lots of lots of them.  Now is the time, folks…it’s looking like an intense but short tomato season.  You can take up to ten pounds of tomatoes this week, and we also have a ton of seconds or #2s or sauce tomatoes, various names for slightly damaged tomats, that are free for the taking.  Get your sauce and salsa recipes ready, set aside some time for canning, freezing, etc.  Sonya and Claire plan to can tomorrow afternoon.  We also dry tomats in our dehydrator and make and freeze pasta and pizza sauce.  Another great way to prepare and save tomatoes for the winter is to roast them.  Simply quarter a few tomatoes, spread them on a sheet pan, drizzle with oil, and roast them in the oven.  Then, let them cool and dump the results in freezer bags.  The frozen roasted tomats are great as a wintertime base for soups or sauces.  And, for heaven’s sake, eat them fresh, too.  Here’s some inspiration:

Sonya made this platter with a variety of our heirloom tomatoes...

...nice to look at, better to eat! Sliced and adorned with chopped basil, olive oil, salt, and pepper...simple and perfect.

In last week’s blog post, I gave a shout-out to Vermont.  Numerous towns were hard hit by the remnants of Irene including the town of Plymouth where many generations of my mom’s family came from, and a number of farms were hit hard, too.  I’d like to share a few links in case any of you feel like helping out directly.  It’s encouraging and inspiring to see so much potential help available so quickly to those affected.  These links came to us courtesy of Growing for Market, a wonderful monthly publication for small market farmers and gardeners.

  • Vermont Community Foundation has a Farm Disaster Relief Fund that will provide grants to farms of any size.
  • Regional Farm & Food Project will provide help to farmers in the Hudson and Mohawk valleys of New York. 
  • NOFA-Vermont’s Farmer Emergency Fund will make grants and no-interest loans available to organic farmers as funds are donated.
  • Look who's living in one of our cherry tomato plants!

    Baby birds in the greenhouse tomatoes.

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    4 Responses to CSA – Week #12

    1. Terri Trepanier says:

      Your kind words about Andrew are very much appreciated. Thank you for giving him a safe place to learn about farming and share your love for it. My continued prayers for all of you for the rest of the reason and the birth of your new son. May God Bless you all.

    2. Auntie Mere says:

      That fellah in the Caps hat looks like a real fahmah!

    3. John says:

      Don’t he? He did a good job running around with us yesterday and a bit this AM. Nice to catch up with the Gull and glad he finally got to see this farm!

    4. John says:

      Thanks for your kind words!

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