The farm is slowly declining as we linger without our usual September freeze. Even without the frost, many crops have decided to give up for the year, including the chard, kale, summer squash.
We had a fantastic lightning storm the other day, accompanied by lots of rain. I learned something new when talking to a friend: lightning storms fix atmospheric nitrogen, giving free food to the soil and crops. i found an article online on the nitrogen cycle that mentions it, and they say:
Amazingly, salad greens that looked to small to ever harvest this year look noticeably larger after a long storm full of heavy rain and lots of nearby lightning. Its as if the entire field got fertilized.
Alert: We are having a little ‘end of the season’ gathering for farm workers and CSA customers. If you can make it (sorry about the last minute notice) THIS SUNDAY, September 23rd @ 3pm at the farm. Please bring a potluck dish and visit us at the farm on Powell Mesa (approx, 34833 Powell Mesa Rd).
Four weeks of the CSA remain; depending on harvest conditions, the last week may be a double box, (boxes 16 & 17) will come as one big box, with two weeks of items – since everything stores so well at this time of year anyway. On to the crops:
Broccoli – fall broccoli is now coming in
Cauliflower – Orange (cheddar – delicious!) – some White, Purple too.
Carrots (last week)
Tomatoes – more & more until the freeze – if you get overloaded, throw these in a bag and freeze them in a freezer bag. Defrost and stew in winter (add some fresh herbs) for a great sauce.
Lots more Winter squash – so far we have picked acorns (and white and orange acorns) , dalacata, festival and sweet dumpling. Delacata (striped long ovals), Butternut (brown, pear shape), Buttercup and Blue Hubbard all look great this year. Leave these on the shelf for a few weeks for a sweeter flavor. A freeze (soon) will help sweeten up the rest of the crop.
Pumpkins – we will have enough for everyone to get at least a small pumpkin, which you can put on your table or bake in a pie.
Onions – Reds coming on strong (dry these out, they store very well), yellow storage onions ready at the very end.
Peppers – Until it freezes
Chard in extras
Apples – Galas, Jonagold, Jonathan, Golden Delicious and others
Pears – red and others