2011 CSA Newsletter, Week 3 – State of the Farm

A panoramic shot of the main field, early July 2011

The State of the Farm Post

Each year around this time I like to give a detailed report of the crops we have this year and what and when you might expect them. An alphabetical list will follow, but first here are some pictures from the main field, showing how far the crops have progressed!

Click any image to enlarge!

In the foreground is a bed of head lettuce. you can make out the many types of lettuce in the beds by their different color and texture. This bed has no insect damage and the heads look beautiful! Beyond the lettuce is cabbage, kohlrabi, broccoli and potatoes.
Directly ahead is the garlic, you can make out three types of garlic by their maturity time. the ones in the back left are the ripest, very close to ready - they are starting to turn brown on top - these are a pink garlic called 'garden rose'; the front left is 'purple glazier' and not quite ready, the bed on the right is the soft-neck white garlic we grow the most of. We will start picking garlic next week and have dried, cured bulbs in 4-5 weeks.

Peas and carrots before getting weeded for the second time. We picked the first peas this week and will have more in the coming weeks. The carrots are just about to get further thinned for baby carrot bunches
Artichokes in the front - this picture was taken a few weeks ago and they are actually getting much bigger now. I'm still hoping for a crop this fall. To the right is another patch of broccoli, then beyond sight second plantings of carrots, cilantro, dill and beets, plus corn, beans, squash, basil and more.

Another view across the final section of the field. What looks like brown soil are the smallest seedlings, recently emerged and fiercely competing with the heavy weed load. Our job is to keep them weeded and watered!

 


What’s in the Box!

Lots of new head lettuce types coming in this week. one bed’s green leaf & green romains have been getting MUNCHED by (i suspect) grasshoppers. Amazingly, the red lettuce remains untouched, and other beds of lettuce further out in the field look just fine. we took some of the smaller romains and stripped the outer leaves – these are bagged up three to a sleeve as ‘baby romain hearts’. The Kohlrabi really sized up this week, and we will have kohlrabi again at least once or twice. We gave you purple and green kohlrabi, peel and cut the bulb/round stem part. Steam, use in a stir fry or soup – the flavor is similar to a sweet broccoli stem.

The beets this week are not only baby sized (around ping pong ball sized or smaller), they are a special variety cultivated for harvest as baby beets. This means they are especially tender and tasty as early baby beets. I was a bit skeptical myself when i read about the variety in the seed catalog, but I have since become convinced! I suggest boiling these up and eating them whole when soft.

Also new this week is dill – if you don’t want to use it this week, just hang the bundle until dry and store in a jar or bag for use later. This week the Kale and Chard have started to become abundant, the bags are much larger and we have extras. For half members you will get one or the other every week. Fulls get one of each.

Extras!

Throughout the season we will have certain items in abundance and are happy to pass them on if you want more! Right now we have extra cooking greens. If you want more cooking greens, you can get more – farm pickup there is usually extra – check the board; Crested Butte pickup – there is extra on the truck, meet the truck sundays between 11 and 11:30 to meet your farmers and take advantage of the extras. Marble/Redstone/Gunnison members please wait until you get your box this week and then email me to tell me if you can use more greens!

In The Box

NEW: Dill – great in soups, salad dressing, marinade…
NEW: Beets –
amazing pablo baby beets with a few goldens mixed in
NEW: Kohlrabi –
green and purple bunches (fulls 2)
Baby Salad Mix 
– we should have this all summer -yum
Radishes – a few more still coming in
Kale – Bagged leaves – fulls get 2
Chard  – Bagged leaves – fulls get 2
Head Lettuce – romaine, red speckled green romaine, romaine hearts; red butter more red oak leaf, some green butter
Peas – some members get them, if you don’t get them this week you will get them next week, we are keeping track!

Fruit

Cherries & Apricots from Domingez Canyon

Coming soon

Onions
Summer Squash
Cucumbers
Broccoli
more lettuce varieties


The State of the Farm

Here is a quick run down of the main vegetable crops, how they are doing this year and when to expect them!

All the Crops, A-Z

Here is a word on the status of each major crop (I may leave out a few), how does it look, when will we have it?
Basil –  a bit later than usual, we will have basil in mid august until the 1st freeze; pest quantities available
Beans, Green, Yellow, Purple  – no early crop, but a good main crop, starts in 3-4 weeks, lasts 3-4 weeks !
Beets – plenty more to come, we will take a break for a few weeks soon, then have some more mid-season. consider canning!
Broccoli – just starting, we have a very good looking crop this year
Cabbage, Napa, Red, Savoy, Green – a good crop, we should have some cabbage every few weeks, napas in 2 weeks, regular red and green cabbages start in 3-4 weeks.
Carrots – starts next week with baby carrots, then goes for a long time, usually 8 weeks, starting with bunched, then topped carrots. a good crop in the field, just a bit later than usual.
Cauliflower – a good crop of purple, white & orange cauliflower – starts in mid august and goes for rest of the season with some breaks.
Celery – a good crop, i’m hilling these up like the potatoes to try to blanch them –  we will have for 1-2 weeks in late september/early october
Chard –  bagged baby chard now, we will have bunches starting in 1-2 weeks and have nearly every week for the rest of the season – let me know if you like tons!
Chois – we had two bok choi one weeks, that was it!
Corn, Field & Sweet – we will have our own corn at the end of the season. we will have organic olathe sweet corn for the csa boxes for 4-5 weeks once it starts in mid august.
Cucumber – an unbelevievably large crop, prepare your cucumber salad recipes. a bit this week, lots starting in 2-3 weeks and lasting until the freeze. picklers available by pre-order @ $1.50/lb.
Eggplant – starts mid august, a nice solid crop this year in the new hoop house will last into fall
Flowers – a good crop of gladioli, sunflowers, snapdragons and other flowers for sale
Garlic – a great crop – more green garlic the next few weeks, then dried garlic (3 varieties!) that will show up in your box all season long to keep you well supplied with garlic
Kale – bunches start soon, lasts a long time – into fall, multiple plantings look good
Lettuce – head lettuce for a few more weeks, LOTS of varieties 15-20 or more, try them all!
Melons – a nice looking planting in the hoop house that i’m hopeful about. these trickle in so you might find one in your box some week this fall.
Onions – a great crop, including many shallots, lots of sweet walla wallas, red oniond, hard storage onions, small ‘coin’ onions and scallions – we will start in 2-3 weeks with early onions, then onions in the box nearly every week until the end.
Onions, Bunching, Pearl we have one bed of these and should have bunches in 3-4 weeks (we already had one round)
Peas – starting now and will last for 3-4 weeks
Peppers, Hot & Sweet – starts late august, a nice looking crop – in the hoop house will last into fall!
Potatoes –  a small but excellent looking planting –  we will start with new potatoes by late-august, then pick the main crop at the very end of the season
Pumpkins – a late planting, so we need a late freeze to have a good crop this year!
Salad Mix – plenty more to come, we’ll have this for almost every week of the season
Spinach – one more planting that will last 1-2 weeks still to come
Squash, Summer – lots of variety barely starting next week, then lots starting by mid august –  green, yellow, zucchini, crook neck, starburst, round, etc…
Squash, Winter – looks like a solid crop, but its late so longer squash will need a longer season to ripen
Tomatoes – growing very well, especially the hoop house planting just waiting for them to start to ripen! a solid looking crop this year.
We will have a few other crops I didn’t mention (bulb fennel, romanesco!) – there are just too many – did i miss one of your favorites? send me an email!

Fruit

Fruit runs for 15 weeks; no fruit in the 1st & last boxes
Cherries – we will have cherries for a couple more weeks
Peaches – early crop from Palisaide and the rest from the valley, lots of varieties
Pears – mostly red & green bartletts
Plums – still not sure
Raspberries/Blackberries – will have for CSA boxes later in the season
Apples – lots of varieties made it, these start in mid august
Please call the farm if you have any questions!

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