A hot, then cold, then wet, then dry start to the 2011 CSA season…

Already this year has been an unusual one. We had our first heat wave in March, and we got cold in late April. Most of the year has been amply wet, pushing back our planting times and leading to this start date, one week later than usual. Let’s not forget the ongoing distraction of the chicken battle, which also has taken time from farming. Finally though, we are on track and things are really growing fast now.

I want to extend a hearty “welcome” to all the new members this season, and a joyous “welcome back” to all returning members. We are planning a 29-week season this year, with the last pickup expected to be December 19th. If you wonder why I use less-than-definitive language when I talk about the season, it is because we, as a farm, are at the mercy of many variables we have no control over. Subsequently, that means you can expect some degree of unpredictability, and my language reflects that.

As usual, we will try to make extras available for the food preservers out there, and I hope to get a few more members to preserve food for the off-season. To that end, there will be many opportunities to learn various preservation techniques, from web links, to informal chats at the pickup, to formal workshops, to recipes on the newsletter.

I try to make the newsletter a valuable source of information. It has the harvest list for the week, which I’ll try to get out on Sunday so you know what’s likely to be in your share, plus info about the farm, local events, tips on using the less familiar foods we grow, Jeff’s articles, my rants and ramblings, and links to food-related news. I do welcome your input, as well as recipes you want to share. While I do print a few copies and make them available to you, my goal is to use as little paper as possible.

Another feature of the CSA I try to grow each year is to make other products available at the pickup. These are usually from other local producers, some who set up themselves, some we sell, and others we take orders for. The current vendors are vegan raw foods from Flameless Chef Jeff, cheeses from the Bloomy Rind, and lentil sprouts from Green Market Farm. Products we will try and have for sale each week include local free-range eggs (various sources), shiitake mushrooms from Pete’s Shiitakes, and biodynamic honey (later in the season). We will be taking orders for blueberries from Hidden Springs, local free-range chicken from Wedge Oak Farm, and who-knows-what else as the season rolls on. Oh yeah, free day-old bread from Panera most weeks, beef for sale on occasion, and much more.

Welcome everyone… and let the eating begin!

–Alan

Announcements:

The Summer Solstice Festival at the farm is June 17-19. CSA members can attend free. No dogs.

Plastic Grocery Bags- we use them all the time, so feel free to bring some, and please, clean and intact.

Here are a few links that may interest you:

Organic Ag Still Growing

Damaging Earth to Feed Its People

Certified Organic GMO’s?

This Week’s Harvest:

Lettuce, Garlic Scapes, Green Onions, Swiss Chard, Spearmint, Thyme, Oregano, Catnip, Lemon Balm, Stinging Nettles

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