CSA Newsletter: Summer 2010 – Week 13

 In CSA Newsletter

Hello folks! Week 13 is here, and so is back to school. Good luck for all you moms and dads getting your kids back into the swing of things.  In the hustle and bustle of the first day back, please don’t forget to pick up your share!

From the Fields: It’s definitely starting to look and feel like September out there.  Melons and tomatoes are waning, the conventional fields surrounding us are all yellowing as the corn begins to dry out, and meanwhile we are out doing very typical late summer activities. We’re beginning to take down some of our tomato trellis in beds that have stopped producing. The fall brassicas (cabbage family) are beginning to come in. Meanwhile, we are harvesting leeks and potatoes, as well as dreaming about soups, as the cooler nights begin to descend.

The weather has been downright pleasant lately, though a little dry. As farmer’s we almost always have something to say about rain – either too much or too little. In a perfect world, we would have a nice, soft 1 inch of rain fall every week…. on Sunday. Rarely this is the case, however.  For the last eight days we’ve been moving pipes around the field to give our thirsty plants a drink. This week’s rain will be welcomed with open arms on the farm.

The Winter Share: As promised last week, I’m going to talk about our winter share this week. We are one of a handful of farms that offers a winter share. The idea of the winter share is to help you keep eating locally even though the warm weather has passed. There are quite a few different vegetables that will store well into the winter. Since few folks have root cellars these days, we do the work of storing the veggies and then get them out to you via our winter share.  Vegetables to expect in a winter share include: winter squash (butternut, acorn, delicata, spaghetti), onions, potatoes, beets, carrots, beauty heart radishes, celeriac (celery root), brussel sprouts, garlic, rutabaga, parsnips, and often some greens that we grow in our hoophouse (tatsoi, spinach, sometimes lettuce).

2009 winter share box

The winter share begins in November and ends just before Christmas. The winter share works much like the summer share: pick-ups are on Wednesdays at the same sites we use for the summer share, and there are two share options – Regular and Everyother. The big difference is that a regular share member picks up two boxes per month, while the everyother picks up one box per month. The boxes are larger than the summer shares and have an average value of $50 per box. Regular shares are $225, and everyother shares are $120.  If you are interested in signing up, you do just as you did to sign up for the summer. Registrations forms can be downloaded from the site and sent into us with payment. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate! We plan to accept about 175 members for the winter share this year.

This Week’s Share: New this week: a poblano pepper. These are a a mild hot pepper, used most commonly in the dish, chillies rellenos. With just one, you may want to use it for salsa. The tomatoes are still hanging on. We are delighted. When we first spotted late blight a few weeks back, we expected the worst. Luckily, it hasn’t been nearly so bad! Another bag of tomatoes is coming your way this week. In your share you will also be receiving red peppers – either red bell or sweet carmen. We are at the height of them right now. Last week we made the lentil tomato soup that was in the newsletter and added the sweet carmen red peppers – it was fantastic. Try it if you haven’t yet! Like last week, we will put your hot peppers in with the green beans.  This week you will also receive some of the last sweet corn. This corn comes from our 4th planting.We know you all love sweet corn and we’re sad we haven’t been able to get more to you this year. Our 2nd and 3rd plantings really didn’t do much. Remember earlier in the season when it just wouldn’t stop raining and we wrote about how we couldn’t get the corn in the ground? Our 3rd planting produced just 300 ears of corn out of 4,000 plants. The plants just weren’t able to snap out of the stress they experienced from their delayed transplanting.  We don’t usually do a 4th planting, but with the failure of the other ones we thought we’d give it a shot this year. It’s rare to have sweet corn so late in the season, so enjoy this special treat! You should expect the typical corn borer bugs on the tips like before, and perhaps some uneven pollination due to the high heat during which it pollinated. (We can’t see this when we’re harvesting).

Community News: Did you mark your calendar yet for the 1st Annual Barn Party on Saturday, October 16th? We’d love to see you there! We’ve just booked the band, called the Point Five Band. Click on their name and check them out!

In other news, we need your ideas… Cassie serves as the president of the Westside Community Market board.  For a couple of years now we’ve been looking for a suitable westside location for a winter farmer’s market somewhere near our current summer market on Segoe and Sheboygan Ave, across from Hilldale. We’ve had several leads here and there that haven’t quite panned out. If any of you have ideas of a large open space that vendors could easily load and unload their local food wares for sale on Saturdays during the cold winter months, please share your idea with me!

Enjoy your veggies!

Sincerely, Mike, Cassie, Zea and crew

In the Box

  • Basil
  • Broccoli – REGs
  • Carrots
  • Garlic
  • Green Beans
  • Kale – EOs
  • Jalapeno
  • Poblano Pepper
  • Red Onion – EOs
  • Sweet Corn
  • Sweet Red Peppers
  • Tomatoes (Heirlooms & Slicers)
  • Yellow Onion – REGs
  • Zucchini

This Week’s Recipes:

Summer Week 13: Wednesday, September 1st – Everyother Group A