Tuesday, July 28, 2009

In the Share - Week 12

TOMATOES (F/P) Literally bursting with flavor this week from the frequent rain showers. Treat gingerly.
EGGPLANT (F/P) check out Emily's blog for the prettiest aubergine dish ever
ONIONS (F/P) the last of the Walla Walla and the first of the Ailsa Craig, which is more pungent but a better keeper.
POTATOES (F/P) Bintje, pronounced ben-jee. Very similar to the famous Yukon Gold, but more prolific.
SALSA PACK (F) go to Tom's blog for a roasted recipe
PURPLE PEPPERS (P) Tequila is a green pepper that starts out purple and will have you dancing on the table.
SUMMER SQUASH (F) The last few before we take a break until the next planting kicks in.

ALSO THIS WEEK: Parker Farms delivery

NEXT WEEK: More tomatoes, beans, eggplant, peppers, cucumbers and melons. Carrots and garlic.

THE FIELDS: It's hard for farmers to say that things are going well. Somehow it seems decidely dangerous. The moment I write such a thing I want to take it back before the twister/hail storm comes along to make me wish I'd never been so boastful. But, it cannot be denied that the farm is in much better shape than last season. Same time last year we literally had rivers running through the fields, most of our potatoes had rotted and many crops were barely parsing out enough twisted fruit to fill the shares. In contrast, for most of this season the harvests have been plentiful and the shares full.

The rains have been just generous enough, giving us around an inch per week. In between the rains we've managed to squeeze in the turning under of the finished crops and the preparation of new ones. Thanks to a bit of hustling on the part of the farm crew the fall planting is pretty much on schedule. The far field is filling up with cauliflower, cabbage, broccoli, brussel sprouts and lettuce. The direct seeded carrots, beets and turnips are sprouting. Monday we planted the K family: kale, collards, kohlrabi, and chinese cabbage. To transplant a tender seedling on a summer day we have a definite routine. First, prepare the bed and lay out the irrigation tape. Second, let the sunshine pump water on the beds for a few hours. Next, turn off the water and wait for the wet holes at each emitter to drain until damp but not sticky. Finally, plant the crop right into the wet spot. Oh, one more thing, turn the pump back on and you've got a happy transplant in the heat of the summer.

While we've been busy planting, the sheep have been busy eating. Our little paddock of six Parker Farms sheep are doing a bang-up job of mowing the unused areas of the fields and depositing nutrients at the same time. We move their electro-netting every three days to a new paddock. Here you can see them in their new spot with their old, munched-over spot on the left.

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