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July 22, 2016
Beans, Potatoes and Tomatoes Grow!
A Note from the Farmer's Wife
Now the serious picking begins. Tomatoes and beans are just starting to roll in. Since we are still picking squash and cucumbers that means we spend a lot of hours on harvest. Still other tasks beg to be done as well, like staking the tomatoes (see above). Those tidy, weed-free plants don't just magically grow that way, as any home gardener can attest to. When the plants are quite young, wooden stakes are driven into the nearby earth. This task on our farm is done with a man-powered post driver
. Not my favorite task, but some people love the workout. Next tomato twine is carefully woven to secure the plants to stakes - one long string down the entire row. A month later, when the plants have begun to flop again, another layer of twine is repeated at the next level. Sometimes a third string is needed, depending on the size of the plants...and how much spare time we have.
Rain early this week blessed the ground with a good soaking, much needed after last week's dog-gone heat. Consequently, the farm looks vibrant and abundant. With a super strong crew this summer, combined with a favorable growing season, we are able to harvest a lot of food. We are grateful to our customers who want to eat it!
As many of you have heard, we have opened our CSA for the second half of the season to new members. Partial shares are currently prorated at $308 and full shares $425. Not only will this keep some wonderful food out of the compost pile, it will help our family farm bear the cost of our GAP
(Good Agricultural Practices) certification process. Our customers are our best source of referrals. Take a minute and think of someone who might benefit from the bounty, and send them our way. Click here
November 21, 2015
Sweet Potato Pie
By Charis Lindrooth
- The stars twinkled brightly against the pitch black sky as the Farmer warmed up the engine of the box truck this morning. His daughter, wrapped in a fuzzy blanket and equipped with a suitcase full of stuffed animals, sat in the passenger’s seat, eyes wide with anticipation.
With a groan and a squeak, laden with the bounty of the fields, the truck slowly rolled out the drive and down the road. Shivering in my pink bathrobe, I stood for a moment and looked at the sky. Stars have an amazing capacity for putting perspective on things. One glance at a zillion of them and I can’t help but feel much less important than my swirling thoughts suggest. A myriad of stars helps one escape a myriad of busy thoughts. A deep breath of crisp, frosty air, and, for a moment I feel absolute peace and thankfulness.
In many ways our markets this weekend trump all others. For us, this is the quintessential moment of bounty. A hardworking Farmer and crew harvests, washes and packs vegetables for almost twelve hours the day before. Today, West Chester Grower’s market will be humming with dedicated local foodies. They will be hunting for premium goods to grace their Thanksgiving tables. Local wine, mushrooms, Artisan cheese, sauces, dips, pies and of course vegetables. Brussels sprouts, parsnips, salad greens and broccoli will be top sellers for us. Oh, and let’s not forget those sweet potatoes for the local version of Walmart’s sweet potato pie (see recipe below).
CSA members are “shopping” too this weekend. Ordering from our online “market” for the very last time this year. Every year we host a Thanksgiving meal at home, the perfect opportunity to celebrate with gratefulness another successful growing season. This year the table will be smaller than usual, just immediate family. We will, however, think of all of you, and feel the connection with the many families eating our vegetables simultaneously. Nourishing us all for another long winter. Connecting us all with the good, brown earth it came from. May the bounty of the season be reflected in your full and happy bellies! Thank you all for another wonderful season!