2018 Week 13, Winter CSA Pickup 9 of 13
What a week ahead! In the field I am set to direct seed beets (with Chioggia by request, and a few other new varieties), radishes, turnips, and more peas and fava/horse/windsor beans, plus potato "seed" by hand. Next up I'll transplant the onions, cabbage, kale, kohlrabi, lettuce, and hardy annual flowers. In the greenhouse I seed our first cucumbers (10 varieties to trial for yield and disease resistance) squash (2x2017's quantity, and 'lemon squash' is back after not having grown it since 2013), corn, eggplant (2x2017), sweet peppers (2x2017), hot peppers (2x2017), husk cherries (so many new types to try this year in search of the Indian 'gooseberry'), celery & celeriac, the basils (with a holy/tulsi/grapao trial in search of the kind the Monsoon Siam restaurant prefers), the summer annual flowers (13 varieties against last year's 3), and some of the fancy herbs like lemongrass and ashwagandha.
EarthTools in Owenton, Kentucky, my walking tractor dealer, repaired -- that is, took apart and rebuilt with a few new pieces -- the engine and miscellaneous handlebar issues for half the cost of shipping. A big sigh of relief and 'Thank you!' to Joel, David, Dennis and the whole crew over there. I am excited to have it back and better than ever. Monday morning will be a long walk behind it clearing all the beds for the above seeds and transplants, plus a brand-new field opening up-top for flowers and herbs.
Funny how the heart works. For the last month I have sometimes felt autumn out there in the fields, even though we were this side of the solstice. But now, whether it is the juiciness of the new green, or the way my day is beginning to end before the sunset, or the actual passing of the equinox, all I feel is spring. And, now, having just my second in Virginia, it feels more like home to have the snowmelt signifying that fact. So, here's to Spring, and that great farmer feeling best known as "joy."
I have been watching the $ out : $ in this winter, and it looks like you all are not quite taking the full $100 you are paying for the month, though it's close. By the end of the season, I will make sure that balances out, most likely by making the 13th week free, and also, if the gods allow, by having a good strawberry harvest! The same will be true for the Summer CSA. If the average $ out/share/wk isn't up to $20, the CSA can go the little bit longer it would take to make sure you're getting more than you paid for. That said, we start a new four-week block this week.
I know I am running on, but note that I have been working on making the Winter CSA better for next year: 20 varieties of beans with appropriate help on how to use them; 24 beds of spinach so that we can all turn green!; a few new tea herbs like nettles, milky oats, and Kentucky Colonel mint; as time goes on and our pasture dirt turns to garden soil, some better looking root crops; and, eventually, some corn for polenta and grits. If we were to sell beyond 30 winter shares, I would also have the farmstand open every Wednesday, with the recommendation that one come every-other week, but have the alternate week as a fall-back. If you have any more suggestions, please let me know!
& see you on the farm,
- Carolina Crowder
- Kenearly Yellow Eye
- Midnight Black Turtle
- Quincy Pinto
Popcorn - Cherokee Long
- Long Island Cheese
Burdock / Gobo
Thai Sweet Basil / Horapa
Tulsi / Holy Basil