Thursday, July 30, 2009

Here we are at the end of July already, about halfway through summer, and we've hardly had any summerlike weather. I'm no expert on these things, and I'm not originally from these parts... but it seems this has been an exceptionally cold summer around here. Being from the upper peninsula of Michigan, I don't mind the cool weather. Surprisingly, the veggies don't seem to mind it too much either. They just keep on coming. Even tomatoes and peppers are starting to ripen.
Everything moves so fast here that it can be hard to keep track of all the vegetables coming and going. As soon as one vegetable is done for the season (bye, ramps. see you next year, asparagus) it is replaced by a new vegetable just coming into season (hi, eggplant. good to see you again, tomatoes).
To date, this is a list of all the veggies I have gotten to know for the first time on the farm this year:
Beauty heart radish
Black Spanish radish
Fresh horseradish (I know all about horseradish in a jar.)
Yukina savoy
Sweetheart cabbage
Green garlic

My brain has been very busy with all of this learning going on. It's kind of exciting to think about- when this season is over and I graduate from the Harmony Valley Vegetable Academy, I will be such a pro at seasonal cooking and eating. What a cool job.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Eat your Veggies!

Just a list of June & July CSA box contents, to match up with the pictures: Red leaf lettuce, Red Boston lettuce, Kohlrabi, Spinach, French Breakfast Radishes, Purple & White Scallions, Garlic Scapes, Yukina Savoy, Asparagus, Rhubarb, Arugula, Sauté Mix, Basil, Strawberries, Red Radish, Broccoli, Salad Mix, Napa Cabbage, Red Komatsuna, Yukina Savoy, Romaine Lettuce, Sugar Snap and Snow Peas, Summer Squash & Zucchini, Chard, Amaranth, Red Beets, Fennel, Fresh Garlic, Sweetheart Cabbage, White Cipollini Onions, Chioggia Beets, Carrots, Thai Basil, Cucumbers, Baby Bok Choi, Cauliflower, Sweet Spanish Onions, Green Savoy Cabbage, Gold Beets, Green Beans.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

July update

Happy Summer! We are definitely in the midst of the peak season here at the farm and are keeping busy, busy, busy!

We had another hatching of chicks last night, so will have to do some rearranging in the chicken coop. The last bunch of chicks are ready to join the outside world and general poultry population, just in time to make room for these fluffballs.

Last week we started digging the garlic and sending it as fresh garlic to the CSA, as well as drying the bulk of it for later in the season. This week's CSA newsletter tells the whole Harmony Valley Farm garlic story. It's not easy, but it is so worth it!

The other animals are doing well and getting bigger every day! Adam & Darin rave about the beautiful pastures our cattle graze on and how well they are filling out. Dan keeps an eye on the goats and pigs - the pigs are fat & happy in their big pasture! Besides a whole bunch of veggie trimmings and compostables, they also get a couple buckets of organic grain each day.

Flame Weeder

I finally got to see the flame weeder in action! On Wednesday Richard trained José in on the art of burning up weeds in the carrot field. The carrots were planted about a week ago and some were just sprouting, but Richard said they were planted pretty densely so if some got burnt the field could afford that loss.

Basically the flame weeder is used when little weeds come up before your crop - you can burn the weeds off, leaving a clean field. A far more dramatic operation when done at night, but still pretty cool.