Tuesday, June 29, 2010

In the Share - Week 8

pea wash

LETTUCE (F) The first of the summer lettuce, 'crisp' types that can take the heat.
SUMMER SQUASH (F/P) The summer squash grew quick on us this week! Full shares get 2 nice ones, partial shares one.
FRESH GARLIC (F/P) The garlic harvest is in full swing. These are freshly dug, not cured, so keep them in the fridge until you use them.
CUCUMBERS OR PEPPERS/BROCCOLI (F/P) The cucumbers are being shy so far. Full shares get a choice with the first sweet green peppers, partial shares with the last of the spring broccoli.
FRESH ONIONS (F/P) Keep these in the fridge too.
HERB CHOICE (F/P) Summer savory, parsley, basil or a dried herb.
SUGARSNAP PEAS OR KOHLRABI (F) The last of the sugarsnaps and kohlrabi.
SWISS CHARD OR KALE (F) Add either to your standard pasta sauce and enjoy.

ALSO THIS WEEK: Parker Farms meat and egg share delivery

NEXT WEEK: More squash, cucumbers and lettuce. The delayed new potato harvest.

The crops continue to be about a week behind their regular schedule due to the cold temps in the springtime (it's hard to remember now, but, yes, it was cold not too long ago!). We are hopeful that the cucumbers, tomatoes and beans will be coming on soon. There are tons of flowers and green fruit. The summer squash is the notable exception. Squash has a reputation for bountiful crops and we are happy to have them right now while we wait for everything else to catch up. Enjoy the big beauties this week as we will be harvesting them at a smaller stage from now on.

The last two days have been filled with the garlic harvest. Garlic is a crop that holds a special place in the heart of the farmer. While most of our crop seed is purchased from the seed companies every year, we save our own garlic seed. The garlic grown at Fair Share Farm then, is unique to our farm, it's soil, climate and the abilities of the farmers that tend it. The heads of garlic we are harvesting now began as individual cloves planted last fall. These cloves came from our best heads that were harvested a year ago. Thus the garlic crop continues from year to year, from clove to head and back again. As we harvest, we set aside the largest heads for 'seed'. About a tenth of the crop each year is not sold, but saved for seed.
one-third of the crop

This year's crop is a good one. The heads are not enormous, but there are plenty of good-sized ones for the shares and large ones for seed. We have almost no rot this year which has been a problem in the past. The dry weather that we have had leading up to the harvest was ideal. Once harvested, the garlic is sorted, strung up and hung in the barn. In a few week's time they will be fully cured and good for long-term keeping. We like to hand out garlic every other week for the rest of the season.

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