The Fall CSA has arrived! The barns are full of winter squash, onions, garlic and shallots just waiting to get sorted, cleaned and sent out to members. The root crops, held back by the earlier dry weather, are sizing up in the fields. If we have a few more weeks of warm weather, we should be able to get them to you before the end of the fall. The greenhouses and fields are full of cabbage, salad greens, kale, and so much more. We even have a final taste of summer for you this week: husk cherries and tomatoes. Fall bounty is upon us!
We went out to Vinalhaven last Wednesday to see the amazing farm of our dear friends (and 2011 apprentices) Sara and John, of Sparkplug Farm. They’re moving off of Vinalhaven this winter after five seasons on the island, and we’re so impressed by all they’ve accomplished there. They’ll be selling their farm business, so hopefully some new farmer will step into their crucial role in the island’s food system.
A few free PYO opportunities are now available on the farm:
- Cilantro: There is plenty of gorgeous cilantro still in the field, but it is also swamped by two types of insidious weeds (Galinsoga and Henbane). If you want to make a whole bunch of salsa, or to blend cilantro up with oil and salt and put it in ice cube trays in the freezer for winter cooking (that’s what I do), please feel free to come by and harvest! When coming down our driveway, the cilantro is located on the right after the hoophouse that is closest to the house. It is between the beets and the dead cucumber plants. Bring a knife to cut the cilantro off at its base and bring something to harvest it into. It’ll be hard to find amongst the weeds but it’s there and it’s beautiful!
- Kale and Chard: We freeze bags and bags of kale and chard for the winter, and with a little spare time you can, too! This location is a little more tricky to explain (and is located in a remote field), so please send me an email if you’re interested and I’ll explain how to find it. If you want to wait, at the end of the fall CSA a greens field at the farm will be available for PYO, so you are also welcome to wait till then when it’s a little more accessible.
Remember to Save The Date! Our favorite afternoon of the year is approaching on Saturday, October 22nd. Starting at noon you can come to the farm to pop apart garlic bulbs, eat delicious potluck food, press apple cider, and hang out with some of the nicest people (our members!) in the Midcoast. We hope to see you there!
If you were a Summer Honey member and did not receive your second and final jar last week, please let me know.
Have a wonderful week, enjoy the fall bounty, and please be in touch with any questions!
Reba, Bill and the HCF crew
Fall CSA Week 1 of 6: Salad Greens, Green/Red/White Sweet Peppers, Garlic, Red Onions, Cherry and/or Slicing Tomatoes, Collard Greens, Delicata Winter Squash, Husk Cherries, Broccoli, Cauliflower, Green Cabbage
Fall Week One Add-ons: Eggs, Grain, Mushrooms, Cheese, Milk, Fiore, Bread, Tofu