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Farm News for the week of July 24th

 

Reminders & Announcements

  • This week is a pickup week for weekly Vegetable and Fruit Share members.  Next week is a pick-up week for all Vegetable, Fruit and Egg Share members.
  • Interested in volunteering at the farm?  Gleaning is a great way to volunteer at the farm. Volunteers work with our friends at the Liberty Prairie Foundation to harvest Prairie Wind produce that otherwise would not be harvested from our fields. These fresh vegetables are then delivered to a local food pantry for distribution to their clients. Adults, kids, families and groups are welcomed! Help to increase access to fresh healthy foods for those in need, learn more here.

  Upcoming Dates

  • Week of August 7th -Last week of Early Summer Shares
  • Week of August 14th - First week of Late Summer Shares
  • Week of October 9th - First week of Fall Shares

  This Week's Vegetable Harvest

  • New Potatoes 

  • Beets

  • Tomatoes

  • Peppers

  • Fresh Sweet Onions

  • Zucchini (off farm shares only this week)

  • Cucumbers

  • Lettuce
  • Parsley


This Week's Fruit Share

  • Golden Peaches
  • White Peaches
  • Blueberries

  

Farm Photo Journal After some sober moments amidst flooded fields, we've set our sights towards replanting, reseeding and resetting! Last week, our farm crew spent much of their time seeding in the greenhouse, direct seeding in the field (carrots, beets, beans), transplanting broccoli in the field (as Jeff C. and Jem demonstrate in the picture above), planting lettuces in the hoophouse and weeding our fall crops. We took advantage of every day and ray of sunshine.  

Even though Jeff isn't a lover of taking farmer selfies, he obliged and I found his picture to demonstrate a palpable optimism while sowing seeds in the field.  he picture also nicely showcases the hoppers on the seeders that hold the seeds (filled with green bean seeds) that ride behind him on tractor.     

On my daily farm reviews, I am often struck by the sheer will of our crops to thrive. Even under the stress of too much water, the plants continue to grow new leaves, more fruit and their stems stand up straight to reach for more sunshine and fresh air.  Many of our crops are looking healthier than ever! I peeked in on our upcoming eggplant crop which looks great with plentiful fruit and dark green leaves.  When we pulled the first of this week's onion crop, we were happy to see their solid, healthy roots allowing them to take in the nutrients provided from our rich soils.  

Popcorn is one of our favorite fall plantings, and its thriving standing over six feet tall! This year, we've experimented with planting heirloom flint corn (used for corn meal) which we're testing and considering for seed selection for future years plantings.  Throughout the year, Jeff will also plant red winter wheat, buckwheat and winter rye as a part of our cover crop mix. While we continue to use a variety of legumes and grasses as our cover crops to protect and build the soil, adding these grains into the mix provide diversity and also allow us window into grain crop production.  

Jeff spent Monday at Hazzard Free Farm, which is the farm we've partnered with earlier this season to provide our members with cornmeal. Farmers spent the day touring the farm, learning from each other and exploring the grain production equipment used including beautiful antique mill equipment still in use today. Learning about different crop production techniques is what keeps our curious minds thriving!    

Finally we also find that our farm dog, Winston, is also thriving by taking summer weather in a stride by enjoying evenings spent in the cool farm grass.  He's great at reminding us to lay in the grass and enjoy the cool weather.  Enjoy your week!   

Making the most of your share  

This week's share contains beautiful new red potatoes. Typical potato harvesst involves mowing off the potato leaves with a tractor and then waiting a few weeks for the skins to cure before harvesting the potatoes.  We've found our rich, moisture-holding soils are not as ideal for curing potato crops, but they are perfect for growing rich, delicious new potatoes. This week's new red potatoes (the variety is called Norland Reds) haven't had any curing time. They have awesome flavor and because their skins are very delicate, we leave them unwashed until cooking.  I hold them under water, gently brushing the soil away with my fingers to clean them.  I made a delicious Nicoise Salad for my family the other night with them, and they are also delicious gently boiled alongside a delicate fish.  Store these potatoes in a brown paper bag in a cool, dry place and use within 2 weeks.  

Fresh sweet onions are also making an appearance in shares this week (and Jeff appears to be making a note of it).  These onions were plucked from the field this week and very crisp and fresh tasting. We're beginning to pull in our onion harvest which we will cure to allow for their skins to set and create storage onions for the fall and winter.  In the meantime, enjoy these onions raw on burgers, salads or wherever you use onions.    

Fruit shares will contain two varieties of peaches this week, Early Golden Peaches and White Peaches.  Early Golden peaches have the deep yellow skin with a red blush and the White peaches have more of a pink skin. Inside, the golden flesh of the yellow peach is more acidic, with a tartness that mellows as the peach ripens and softens. White peaches are lower in acid and taste sweet whether firm or soft. I've found white peaches tend to ripen quickly on your counter, so I'd recommend keeping a close eye on them to spot the perfect moment to enjoy.   

Farm Kitchen Recipes

Salad Nicoise
Grilled Pork Chops with Tomato Peach Relish
Raw Beet Salad
Roasted Vegetable Panini with Pesto   

Next Week's Harvest (our best guess)... kohlrabi, broccoli, lettuce, plums, tomatoes, and more!



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