Fall feels extremely good this year on the farm. It’s not just the deliciously cool nights and the dry air of the past three days, or that the work of the farm is shifting, more and more, to the satisfying work of harvesting. But this year’s final month of the summer CSA will be especially sweet considering how challenging things were earlier in the season. Bill still has to be really careful with his healing back, and I’m actually grateful that due to campaign house visits he has to quit farming a bit early every day. It’s going to be a crazy busy fall, but I think it will all still feel relatively calm compared to the uniquely intense July of 2018. If anyone wants to help drive Bill during his house visiting (most nights from 4-7 pm) or canvass for the campaign for a couple hours (next group canvass is Saturday, September 7th, at 10am), click on the links to sign up.
Since we had to cancel one delivery earlier in the season, we’d love to hear from you what you would like to see happen. Should we keep trying to add “extra” storage vegetables to the remaining four weeks of summer deliveries, or add another (potentially smaller) ‘summer’ share in the first week of October? In other words, do you feel like you will have gotten enough veggies with four more weeks of the season or should we try to add an additional week? We will have to end the fall share at the same time as always, so if we extend the summer share we’ll need to double up on a fall week, but as the crops become more and more storage crops, that would be possible. Let me know what you think and we’ll make a decision based on your input!
Our friend and CSA member Kate helps out a seamstress in Ghana who sews beautiful, strong shopping bags. She sends them to Kate to sell for her here in the U.S., and we thought that these bags might be something that members would want to purchase on days that they forget their own CSA pick-up bags. So if you ever want to check them out, let us know! We’ll have them at every pick-up for $10 ($7 to the seamstress, $3 to the CSA member financial aid fund).
A little tomato info: whenever possible, we try to have a range of ripeness levels available at each pickup. Ideally, we want you to be able to choose a tomato to eat that night, and then be able to choose others that will be perfectly ripe for meals later in the week, if you so wish. A great tomato might still have a green shoulder, since a number of years ago we learned that the gene that gives tomatoes green shoulders is also the gene that gives them incredible flavor (the story can be found here). What is most important is to wait to eat your tomato until it is a deep color (either pink or red, for most of the varieties we grow) and it has a little give and softness. Never store them in the fridge if you can avoid it, for it will permanently change the texture and flavor of the fruit for the worse. If you get your CSA bag out of the walk-in at the farm, you can then add your tomatoes from the table next to the walk-in. Sorry to say that those of you who pick up out of the PBMC cafeteria after 5:15 still have a refrigerated pre-packed bag that includes your tomatoes, because we complicate the cafeteria staff’s lives enough without asking them to babysit our tomatoes. But it’s one more motivation to make it to the Tuesday pick-up!
Have a wonderful week, remember that this is a honey CSA week, and enjoy your early fall veggies!
Reba and the HCF crew
Vegetables Week 13: Carrots, Potatoes, Husk Cherries, Cilantro/Basil/Dill/Parsley, Cherry Tomatoes, Slicing Tomatoes, Zucchini/Zephyr/Patty Pan, Cucumbers, Garlic, Tomatillos, Lettuce Mix or Shishito Peppers or Hakurei Turnips
Week 13 Add-on Shares: Honey, Milk, Yogurt, Tofu, Mushrooms, Oil & Vinegar, Bread, Eggs, Ferments