2012 CSA share #5

The rain has stayed away, the sun is shining, and we’re feeling downright spoiled around here with the abundance of help on harvest days.  Today, we had 8 (!) people blanketing the fields:  Sonya!  John!  Charlie!  Rachael!  Donna!  Glen!  Brittany!  And Brittany’s friend, Anna, who is now on board as our new Friday workshare harvester!  Oh, the humanity!  We banged out the harvesting in no time then got most of the crew going on some much-needed hand-weeding, plus a little weed-wacking and cucumber trellising.  Thanks, everyone!  Also, a special thank you to Tonya Watson and family for doing our Friday wholesale and CSA deliveries last week!

We’re thrilled that the farm is getting some time to dry out.  The excessive moisture has been our biggest concern, but right behind that was the annual summer crescendo of pests.  The potato bugs are bad again this year…they are chowing both the potato plants and the eggplant…and the squash bugs are bad, too.  We’ve also noticed the arrival of leaf hoppers out on the beans and potatoes.  All this means that I will have to get out and begin spraying this week, a task I hate and always hope to avoid.  However, when the damage reaches a certain point, there’s really no other alternative.

After last week’s announcement about the end of the CSA, we were pleased and grateful for the words of support and encouragement we received from friends, family, and CSA members.  Quite a few people commented via this blog, or on Facebook, or in person, and we appreciate your kind words.  It’s an ending but also a beginning…we plan to sit down sometime soon and make a whole list of projects, ideas, and plans to try out in the years to come, and we’re excited for the possibilities.  Again, we’ll be commenting on all this regularly throughout the rest of the season, I’m sure.

CSA share #5 for the 2012 season includes the following goodies:

1 qt. of Red Gold potatoes
1 bunch of beets
1/2 lb bag of French Breakfast radishes
1 head of lettuce
1 Napa cabbage -or- 1 kohlrabi
The Big Choice: 1/2 pint of raspberries -or- 1 pint of snow peas -or- 1 bag of zucchini -or- 1 bag of eggplant
1 small green bell pepper
1/2 pint of cherry tomatoes
1 beefsteak tomato
1 fresh garlic bulb
The herb choice: 1 bunch of basil -or- 1 bunch of parsley -or- 1 bunch of scallions

Many things are coming in all at once…”lots of variety in small quantities” might be the theme this week.  Peppers should size up, and big tomato and cherry tomato yields are on the rise.  We grow two varieties of cherry tomatoes here, by the way:  the red are Super Sweet 100s, and the orange are Sungolds.  The latter are to die for…like little sweet suns in your mouth.  Heirloom tomatoes will be coming later in the summer.  The garlic in your share this week is fresh, so it should be stored in the fridge and used fairly quickly.  Later in the season, we’ll harvest all the garlic, hang it to dry for a few weeks, and distribute it in cured form…dry, and storable at room temp. for months.

Not much to report in animal news…at least, you know, comparatively speaking (no animals were tackled this week).  The egg production from the girls has been slowly but steadily increasing, and we’re pleased to finally offer some dozens for sale at pick-up this week.  We have only 18 hens this year, so even at full production strength, we won’t have as many eggs available as in years past.  Try to come early if you want eggs!

Lydi helps pack eggs after washing.

The perfect food?

The sheep are pretty much always in 2 groups now:  Sienna, Lake, and Palmer out in the field behaving themselves; and Savannah and Coco locked in the winter pen making mischief.  While I was out of town this weekend, Savannah managed to butt/work her way through the fence where it connects to the back of their shed.  Sonya was able to chase her back in.  Son also got one of our chicken fences set up around the winter pen to allow the duo access to some fresh grass.  Our troublemaker, Savannah, has a date with the butcher in a little over two weeks.  We really don’t know what else to do at this point, but I’m still trying to figure out a less permanent solution to this escaping problem.

We hope everyone had a wonderful 4th of July (it was mellow here…my dad was visiting, and we lounged around, had a cookout, etc.)  Have a great week, and enjoy the veggies!

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