Heat and Good Things

It has been a toasty week for all of us, but full of exciting new things on the farm:  new potatoes, new beets, new baby birds in the nest in our barn, and new words from Cecilia (‘boobeer’—or so we now call blueberries).  A new volunteer, Corinne, will be with us during the next week.

First Potato Harvest

Bill digging Red Norlands — the first new potatoes of the season (and he’s clearly delighted to have his picture taken).

Bill and I admitted to each other this week that it feels strange to have a farming season with no crises in it so far.  We  always tell apprentices, half-jokingly, to ignore us when we get simultaneously, momentarily, deeply anxious over something bad on the farm (i.e. late blight kills all the potatoes, cutworms eat all the broccoli seedlings, etc.).  We tell them that those kind of lows are bound to  happen, that that’s life on the farm, and then we’ll move on.  But so far this year there haven’t been any major problems.  I hope that I’m not wishing some disaster upon us by writing this.  But it sure feels nice for now.

The irony is that, for blueberry farmers in the state, this has been  a rough year (and last year, our tough year,  was a great one for them).  Remember how we had that early, warm stretch around Easter, and then a  late cold snap?  Our friends at Red House Farm, the Waldoboro organic blueberry farm that sold truly gorgeous berries to our members last year, lost nearly half their crop this year to that late frost.  They sent us an email yesterday to say that they’re sorry, but there will not be blueberries for sale to our members this year.  We feel terrible for them, and what a disappointment for all of us.  May next year be both a good berry and a good vegetable year.

Our MOFGA organic certification inspection took place this week.  It’s a two to three hour annual meeting where we walk our fields with the inspector,

Hanni in the wash shed, cleaning up a mountain of beautiful rainbow swiss chard.

talk about our organic management strategy, provide records of everything we’ve planted or sprayed or input on our farm.    It takes a lot of effort and resources, both financially and in terms of our time, to remain certified organic, but we believe it’s worth it.  It’s one of the most important ways we can show the level of our commitment to the environment, the soil, and to the folks who eat our vegetables.

We’ve been eating a lot of amazing salads from  Mark Bittman’s ‘How to Cook Everything Vegetarian’ cookbook this week.  I really can’t recommend that cookbook enough to CSA members.  Hearty salads have been the perfect foil for this hot, but still hungry, time of year!

Have a great week!

Reba & the HCF crew

Week 5 veggies:  New Potatoes, Fennel, Basil, Baby Beets with Beet Greens, Zucchini &/or Zephyr Summer Squash, Cucumber, Swiss Chard

This week’s recipes:  Couscous Salad with Fennel and Raisins, Crumbled Zucchini or Zephyr Summer Squash

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