Last CSA Box this week! I repeat – THIS IS THE LAST WEEK!
Its been a great year on the farm and I am always a little sad to see it end. This year I actually did a pretty good job with my planning and we have managed to use nearly everything from the field. The last few weeks there have been some nice bonuses like radishes and cilantro, and we have also filled in with crops from other growers – including winter squash from Austin Family Farm and celery and carrots from Rendezvous Farm.
A big thanks from me goes out to Crystal, Lara, Valerie, Anastacia and the rest of the harvest crew for keeping the farm harvest humming along, and for Emily who kept the truck going over the pass. Their help was indispensable.
We finally got a freeze and the timing was perfect for the end of the season. Please note that the winter squash is ‘fresh’ and needs at least a few weeks of storage to cure and really sweeten up. Most winter squash will store for several months if kept in a cool, well ventilated space.
Thank you again to everyone for being a part of the 2013 season!
If you are interested in getting a fall box or boxes delivered, please give Jack a call at (970) 778-6026 – he does regular deliveries to basalt/aspen and would happily come to CB/Gunnison or stop in Redstone/Marble for a delivery if enough people are interested.
Here are some recent and older pictures to help you remember the year – click an image to enlarge.
This week, things have really turned the corner to fall. The air is a bit crisper, the leaves look a bit brown and the field has started its slow descent towards winter. Everything has slowed down and crops are all past their peak (except perhaps tomatoes which are now at their max). Peppers and eggplant should also continue for several more weeks. You will see this decrease reflected in decreasing box sizes for the remainder of the season.
Winter squash is maturing slowly, but should be ready starting in 2 weeks, then we will have it every week until the end. Summer squash is in decline and will end soon. Cucumbers are also declining but will last a few more weeks. Herbs continue for a bit more.
We started picking potatoes last week (with leeks!) and after a break this week you will have them for most/all remaining weeks. Salad is back this week and for several more weeks. Broccoli and cauliflower are done, but broccoli might be back with an encore appearance (side shoots) in a few weeks. We picked the last of the carrots this week and may have one more beet crop. Onions, oh the onions! So many to pick! This week we have reds, we will have yellows & whites thru the rest of the season and hopefully one more round of leeks towards the end.
Kale and chard continue on, I hope you still enjoy these crops! I know some of you are done, but I also know others who happily freeze their weekly supply for winter use. Remember – all this abundance will fade away with the season, so preserve what you can! Speaking of preserving – we do have roma tomatoes by the case, please email if you are interested.
Fruit: every crop is late, so we continue with peaches this week, nectarines next week, early apples and pears the following week and apples until the end.
The End Approaches
The final pickup day will be as follow: Farm Friday Oct. 6th, Marble/Gunnison Sat Oct. 7th, Crested Butte: Sunday Oct. 8th. Please try to return any boxes/totes you have on this final day; we will also try to swing back to get the final boxes a week or so after the final delivery.
The peak of the season has arrived! Everything is coming in at once and the boxes are packed. There were over a dozen items in this weeks box and most of these items will continue coming in for several more weeks. The crops are all well established and the weeding is nearly done.
The latest farm pictures, click to enlarge:
Important billing note all accounts now Due!
All accounts are now due in full. I will email final invoices shortly – please send a check for your full balance (or pay online with paypal or a credit card). call or email me if you have any questions. If you can’t pay in full, please contact me to arrange a payment plan.
Here is whats in the box this week:
Broccoli – lots more coming for several more weeks
Beans – last week on these
Carrots – will last for several more weeks
Chard – still plenty
Cucumbers – more and more coming in over the next few weeks
Corn – couple for weeks of corn
Eggplant – really coming in now, will last a few more weeks
Garlic – we will dole this out over next month little by little
Herbs – many herbs coming in now – a mix for the remainder of the season, chives & parsley this week
Kale – still looks great, lots more coming – blanche and freeze what you caqn’t use right away
Onions – started picking red & yellow onions this week, will last all season, storage types last
Peppers – just started, waiting on many types to turn colors, many more to come, sweet & hot
Salad Mix – still coming, we will take a break soon then have more for the end of the season.
Squash – a steady supply, only a few varieties this year because a few types failed
Tomatoes, tomatillos – just starting, more and more until it freezes
Fruit: Peaches – lots more coming!
What still hasn’t come in yet?
Artichichokes – just starting to produce may have enough by the end for everyone to get some
Cabbage – plenty out there but coming in slowly, fulls only this week
Cauliflower – starting soon, we should have for a few weeks.
Leeks – a nice stand, waiting for potato digging to dig leeks, will have for 2 weeks towards the end
Melons – if the frost is late we may have a crop for everyone
Potatoes – beautiful stand, we will have potatoes in abundance for the last several weeks of the season
Winter Squash – a nice stand, we will start picking in early September and have for the rest of the season
Fruit: Apples, Pears, Nectarines
Call to special order: Gladioli, Sunflowers, Basil for pesto.
Everything is happening at once and I got a little behind, so this newsletter covers weeks 5 & 6 (last week and this week).
What herbs are those? One CSA member emailed to find out what the herbs in last week’s box were. I can’t tell you for sure because every box got dill, but the rest got one or more (fulls) of several different herbs – thyme (small tight bundles), oregano (long leafy branches in bundles), basil or flavored basil (zip-top bags), chives (everyone got those the previous week) or parsley. dill and cilantro are mostly done for the season.
A crop update – We have had some incredible heat this summer and a few rainstorms as well. The main field crops are slowly catching up, but everything is a bit later than usual. It does look like we will have sweet corn this week from Austin farms, and cucumbers and squash are shifting from a trickle to a flood as we shift from early planting to main plantings over the next few weeks.
The first broccoli is ready this week, and I have more than the usual amount planted so it should be abundant later in the season. ( Note: the early broccoli is often not quite as nice as the later harvests which happen in the cooling weather of fall).
Along with the broccoli, Cabbage is almost ready and we may pick some small ones for the CSA in a week or so, just to give you some – more in later boxes.
We started picking onions last week, sweet white ‘Sierra Blancas’. The were a little small, but we have thousands of onions planted and I knew you would appreciate some. The rest of the garlic is getting harvested this week for packing next week, and we will have scallions this week (one week only)! Regular onions continue next week for most of the rest of the season.
I dug up a few feet of potato row and wasn’t impressed; the plants look incredible, but the potatoes themselves aren’t ready. I will try again for early potatoes in a couple of weeks, or see if I can get some from another local grower.
Cucumbers are coming in well, but we are only picking the early varieties we have planted in the hoop-house. The field varieties start next week and we have a much larger planting there, so get your cucumber salad recipes ready. Last week I included picking cukes (which are a little tougher than slicers) because there weren’t many slicers, but this is unusual. If you want picklers for pickling, email me for a 10 or 20lb. box.
Summer squash is starting and we will have a steady, but hopefully not overwhelming supply of zucchini, yellow sunburst and middle eastern summer squash. Winter squash looks great this year, needed some thinning actually! Covering the squash early with floating row cover kept the squash bugs away and although i see them now, the squash have a huge head start.
Eggplant, peppers and tomatoes all look good although it will be a while before we have many ripe tomatoes. We have a nice melon crop so we should have those for a couple of weeks late in the season.
Did I miss anything? email me your questions!
A slideshow tells the story – click any image to start the full screen slideshow!
Week 5 & 6 ~ In the Box –
salad mix – plentiful
fresh or dried garlic
carrots (sizing up for a week)
beans – green, purlpe & yellow fresh beans
squash – more and more
FRUIT: cherries from First Fruits, Peaches from Domingez canyon
A little gallery to show you how everything looks these days on the farm, click any image to enlarge:
In the field we are busy picking, picking and picking. The weeding and planting are mostly done excepting some salad mix beds and pathways. This time of year everything seems to be getting ready at the same time.
New things: In the next few weeks, many new crops will be ready including green (and purple and yellow) beans, broccoli, squash (more varieties), cucumbers and early potatoes and onions as well as scallions (green onions). We should finally have enough carrots for everyone and these should continue for a while. Eggplant and peppers are also starting to size up. Sweet corn from Austin farms should be ready in the next week or two, and Peaches from The Palisade Peach Company should be ready this week.
Old things: The head lettuce is done this week, and we are going to dig the rest of the garlic up. The heat and weeds have mostly finished the peas, although a seconds patch should let us harvest shelling peas for one more week.
Money things: If you haven’t paid your membership in full already, I will be emailing you a invoice in the next day. Please send a check for 50% of the balance, or the full balance. If you have any questions about your bill, please call me at 970-872-4413.
Week 4 ~ In the Box –
Head lettuce – last week
fresh or dried garlic
baby carrots (full members)
FRUIT: more delicious cherries from First Fruits (ends soon, this week or next)
Not much new to report this week – almost a lull in the heat. Everything continues along in the field. The second patch of beets, peas, beans, dill and cilantro has been weeded, and the peas and beets are finally coming in. I’m keeping at the salad mix planting, and we are doubling back to weed the crops that need it – onions, kale, squash and a few others. What are you waiting for and excited about?
The kale was big enough to bunch this week and most of the damage is gone from the flea beetles attacking the lancinato (dino) and red russian kale. Head lettuce is almost done, 1-2 more weeks. The peas are just starting, same with the baby beets in this week’s box; carrots should be ready next week and green beans, squash and cucumbers are all a few weeks off, eggplant in the hoop house will be ready in 1-2 weeks as well.
The garlic is ready to get picked and despite several weedings, seems have to been slightly overrun – meaning smaller sized (but still delicious) garlic heads. These early fresh heads have soft skins and a fresher flavor than dried garlic; we should have garlic regularly throughout the season.
I gave the culinary herbs a break this week to let them size up, but we will continue next week with a rotation of cilantro, dill, oregano, thyme, basil and parsley.
The head lettuce lasts just a couple more weeks, then the summer crops really start to hit!
Cherries! We will have cherries from fruit members for the next few weeks, maybe 3-4 weeks total. We are very fortunate to have a long term purchasing history with one of the few growers with a sizable cherry crop this year – First Fruits. Quantities are a little lighter than past years for the CSA because the price is incredibly high this year ($80/box wholesale!), but we feel lucky to get them at all – so enjoy them deeply.
Week 3 –
note: full members may get doubles, half members may not get all items
I hope you aren’t tired of greens yet, because this week we continue with the same type of vegetables as last week. We do have some beautiful new varieties of head lettuce, including green and red butter and green and red oakleaf. We also had radishes for everybody to get a bunch this week, the purple large round radishes are surprisingly sweet. If you find radishes too spicy, try cutting them very thinly and adding to a salad.
Don’t worry – we have plenty of summer crops ahead: corn, cucumbers, tomatoes, peppers & more are all in store!
We got more kale this week, so everybody gets at least one bag. We also have early summer squash this week from Austin farms – our own squash is still a few weeks off. the garlic just isn’t quite ready, but we picked a little ‘green’ immature garlic anyway (full members). We have more spinach this week and the cilantro has sized up enough to bunch. we picked the kohlrabi, some hasn’t sized up so i’m not certain we have enough for everyone this week (if not we will give those who missed it kohlrabi next week). whats kohlrabi, you ask? check my past newsletters for more! we should have beets starting next week.
Some pictures from packing last week’s box and from the field!
Ironing out the kinks!
Please let me know if you had any troubles with the delivery last week. I want to correct any mistakes I may have made quickly!
Cherries! I have confirmed that i will be able to get cherries for at least one or two weeks. I won’t have them this week, but should by week 3’s deliveries. These will be delicious fruit from First Fruits in Paonia and we are lucky to get them!
Week 2 –
note: full members may get doubles, half members may not get all items
Baby Kale (Bagged)
Head lettuce – assorted mini sleeved green & red butter, green & red oakleaf
Read on for first pickup details, what’s in the box and recent farm pictures…
First Pickup Details
Important: please read the details below and call or email if you have any questions. Farm phone number is 970-872-4413.
First harvest pickup and delivery dates –
Farm Pickup starts Friday June 21st – 3-7pm
Marble/Redstone pickups starts Saturday June 22nd – Sat AM pickup
Gunnison delivery starts Saturday June 22nd @ Gunnison farmers market – Saturdays from 9:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.
Crested Butte delivery starts Sunday June 23rd – 11am @ 421 White Rock
Farm pickup members – pickup is at the farm on Powell Mesa (just down the hill from our home at 34830 Powell Mesa Rd.) on Fridays from 3-7 pm. A whiteboard lists the items you get for your membership type (half/full, fruit) – grab a box or bags if you need them, then pack your box from the produce in the deli coolers or table area. If you can’t make it to pick up during the regular time, please call. I will box your produce up and place it in the walk in (please close door hard until it clicks).
All other areas – Each box is labeled with your name and veg/fruit size (half/full) – if anything is wrong in week one please call so we can correct. Please return the boxes and totes for reuse. Totes collapse with two thumbs pushing tabs in, cardboard boxes can stay intact and stack neatly.
Gunnison – Mark from Thistle Whistle Farm will be bringing your boxes to the Gunnison farmers market. Please thank him and buy some of his yummy veggies.
Crested Butte members – Hosted by Stacee Vanaernem at 421 White Rock. Deliveries are Sundays @ 11 am. If you can’t meet the truck, please send a friend; if we don’t see you we will leave your box on the shaded porch on the right of the building. Please help keep Stacee’s porch as neat as possible between pickups, thanks!
Marble/Redstone – standard pickup time is Saturday mornings, your boxes will be inside the walk-in, first door on our right – please close door hard until it clicks. All boxes will be labeled with an [M] for Marble and have the same color. If you know exactly when you are coming please email or call ahead so I can meet you and help load the boxes. Contact Gina (firstname.lastname@example.org) to find out your pickup slots, call me with questions or for directions.
What’s in the Box?
This spring featured some cool weather and even though my planting was on schedule or early, several crops are a week or two late – including peas, baby beets, carrots, and radishes. some of the early kale has damage we have to pick off.
What we do have ready is tons of beautiful, tender head lettuce including green romaine, red & green crisp head, red and green butter lettuce and red and green oak leaf – at least ten varieties that we will harvest for 4-6 weeks. We have nice sized rainbow chard without any of the usual early leaf damage. We have delicious, tender spinach and cilantro – we will be bagging these two to extend their harvest until the later planting comes in.
We have some culinary herbs ready including garlic scapes (Garlic scapes are the curling tops of garlic plants, which are as edible as the garlic bulbs), early (green) garlic, oregano, chives and parsley – you will get one or more of these in your early box. Also in this weeks box: crunch bok choi from rain crow farms in paonia.
In short – please be patient – lots of greens this spring, enjoy their freshness and vitality – lots of squash, cucumbers, peppers, corn will arrive later in the season, and possibly a week or two later than usual. the early boxes will be a bit smaller than usual, but we will make it up to you later in the seasonn.
Fruit members note: there are no cherries to be had, so we won’t have fruit for several weeks. We do have a good peach, nectarine pear and apple crop and possibly plums. Don’t worry, you will get your full $$$ value of fruit, just a little more a little later in the season. Once again, please be patient!
Week 1 –
note: full members may get doubles, half members may not get all items
Baby Kale (Bagged) – full members
Bok Choi (rain crow farm)
Head lettuce – assorted mini sleeved g. romaine, g. oakleaf, r. oakleaf, g. butter
SO MUCH has happened on the farm in the last few weeks it is startling.
Lots of people suddenly wanted to help out on the farm and we had several huge planting days, with eight or more people helping out.
We had two consecutive visits from large groups of Crested Butte CSA members trading for their produce – coming down for the weekend they put in long days paying off most or all of their summer produce & fruit! Many huge tasks were accomplished, including planting the two large hoop houses we use to grow tomatoes, peppers, eggplant, cucumbers, melons and more.
Then a couple of other large crew days at the farm and everything was in. Soon I had my direct seeding completed as well. Interestingly, I was a little behind on planting just a month ago as cold, wet weather kept us out of the fields in April.
The big task for the next few weeks is WEEDING and my weeding crew is up for task, continually crossing the field with hoes to keep down the burgeoning weed populations… for the most part weeding is complete by July – once most crops are established, their planting pattern forms a canopy that keeps weeds from growing.
First Harvest Update
Note that I will email with complete details and call each of you to confirm your membership type and details foor the first week of pickup/delivery.
Currently first harvest is planned for the following dates:
Farm – Friday June 21st; Marble/Redstone & Gunnison – Saturday June 22nd; Crested Butte – Sunday June 23rd
That means there is still time – if you have not signed up yet or have a friend you think may be interested there is still time to sign up before the first harvest!
We encourage all of our out of town CSA members to plan a visit at least once during the growing season – and local pickup members are encouraged to walk into the fields!
For now here’s some pictures so you can see what’s been going on, click any image to start a large slideshow: