June 24, 2017
CSA Week 4 – June 26, 28, and 30
CSA Week 5 – Next week of July 4 we will run as usual – July 3, 5 and 7 – Julie and Jack on vacation and Brent holding the fort
Dear 2017 CSA Members,
Speaking of vacations, if you will be away and no one will pick up for you, be sure to let us know not to pick for you on any specific date. That way no food will get wasted.
The gypsy moths continue to eat heartily – we keep watching yet another apple tree become defoliated with subsequent dropping of apples. How sad it is. And they are getting bigger and uglier by the day. But a biologist friend tells me that they are due very soon to move into the next stage – which means no more eating for this year. We saw some on our peaches, but we think they will not damage them. We did a whirlwind attempt to get them off of our blueberries and they may be saved. The red and black raspberries are free of damage.
That’s the challenging news. But truly we are making great progress on the farm and did so this past week. We refilled holes in our cabbage, broccoli and collard beds, planted two more beds of carrots, 2 beds of peppers, and finished turning over our hoop houses so that they are hosting cucumbers and tomatoes. We started more lettuce in the greenhouse, and some beet seedlings. Brent mowed some more hay, and one of our gardens that has been growing a green manure rye crop. We planted some giant pumpkin seeds in a special spot for our friend and colleague Jason who died of an overdose last fall, and also planted our flower boxes and mowed the front lawn. The hydrant which has been out of commission for 6 months was fixed and this week we will fill that hole!
The meat birds were separated into 2 more houses and all 10 houses of chickens now move each day right after the cows in our double manuring strategy that then leaves the hay to grow luxuriantly. The hay is then used for mulching, hay for cows for winter, or to grow back as pasture for the cows. It is a wonderful big loop of fertility.
Lindsay foliar feeds the whole farm each week and also gives each vegetable bed a nice drench. Mario started three days per week this week, and Josh 2 days. Monday is Luke’s first day as a full time summer staff member. He has been helping me with chores on Saturdays for the past 4 weeks. Clare went home early on Friday. We must keep an eye on her as she gets closer to having her baby. She is taking over more office work –most notably ordering, website management and photography. We are still thinning peaches – we set aside ½ hour per tree – once per day. The Solstice speed up has us running every which way to take care of all of our enterprises!
I look forward in this upcoming week to doing some longer term management – weeding and mulching of onions, leeks, carrots, tomatoes and potatoes are on the docket. The chard is all done now, and the others will just have to wait another week as we endeavor to get more peppers, then eggplant, celery, lettuce, basil, kale and melons into the ground
Food for this week –
Just a reminder to store all of your fresh produce in plastic bags in the refrigerator – they will keep their freshness this way
- Garlic scapes – these are great in anything that you use garlic for. We take them off the plant now so that the bulbs will grow bigger. They can also be ground up with olive oil and frozen for pesto later. They will go 2-3 weeks. Chop them fine and use the entire scape
- Dandelions – don’t forget to use a little in your salad, in your soup, as a fresh tea, dried for later, or as a green in your stir fry
- Green onions – use the entire plant – bulb and greens – salad or cooked dishes
- Cilantro – I hope this holds out all week, if not we will find some alternative for later in the week.
- Kohlrabi – these purple beauties are great shredded in salad. You can use the leaves as you would kale
- Collards or lambs quarters or broccoli – all good cooking greens
Recycle your paper and plastic grocery-size bags with us. You can leave them in your CSA bags. We also like rubber bands,. And don’t forget any corrugated cardboard. We can use it.
NOFA Summer Conference coming up August 11-13
I will be pushing this event each week. Here is our latest link for your reading enjoyment.
NOFA is one of the most positive solutions out there for climate change education and advocacy around growing practices that are carbon negative. That is just one of the many topics that will be covered this year.
Enjoy the end of June – one of my most favorite months where summer is still fresh and young!
For The Many Hands Organic Farm staff