Week #20 – 2019 CSA Season

What’s in the Box:

Sunflower shoots, pea shoots, garlic, mixed onions, sweet peppers, aji rico pepper, jalapeno pepper, basil, and curly kale.

What’s going on at the farm:  

Week twenty of the CSA season is here!   I’m always a little amazed how quick summer goes by this time of year.   I think I took less than 5 days off all season so far so i’m also grateful for cooler weather and the promise of reduced work hours this time of year.  Never the less I have some of our staple crops for you in this last week of the CSA season.     CSA finishing up should allow me more time to work on clean up and other projects so in reality I don’t think its going to get less busy around here for a few more months.   I also have to prepare the fields for garlic planting and we are preparing some of our hemp crop for oil extraction.  We do now have dry organic hemp flower available too, and will throughout the winter and into next season so let me know if you want to order any, I can even mail it.  Organic CBD oil will be ready in another month or so as we are busy now getting the flowers ready to go to the oil processors. I may send out an e-mail about that to you folks as well as some people have expressed interest in purchasing it.   We are getting way to much precipitation again this week and it looks like a very wet forecast which could cause some trouble accomplishing these tasks.   As a farmer all you can do is your best to cope with those uncontrollable forces so thats the plan.  I’m sure it will all work out and i’ll just take it one day at a time as always.  Next year we should have a very nice strawberry crop in the spring that we worked hard on establishing this year and along with plans for a new barn that will hopefully be taking shape if we can get the old ones torn down soon.   We really need a building and a new cooler to pack all the veggies in after doing it outside for 13 years, with a small walk in those improvements would help our efficiency and work flow quite a bit spot thats the next big goals.   A fourth greenhouse for micro greens is also on the horizon over the next year or two.   Market Share members should know we will have our stand downtown on Saturdays for the remainder of the season.   We will be at Tuesday and Thursday markets one or two more weeks for sure also.

This weeks selection includes.

Sweet peppers  have been a popular crop for us for many years and the usual main theme for us in September.  This current crop is looking great and you will receive a variety of everything we have left this week which may include yellow, red, and orange sweet peppers.  I really like making stuffed peppers or grilling them whole until they char just a tad.  Afterwards they could be eaten as is, frozen with skin peeled off or made into roasted pepper soup.  They are good in salads with the micro greens too.

Sunflower and pea shoots are coming again and these have been my favorite micro green of the year and my go to base for salads at home.  Add a little tomato, sweet pepper, and onion and you have a fantastic salad.

Garlic is of course a staple so more of that coming for you and hopefully you all have a little stash by this point of the year.  It will hold unrefrigerated until spring if need be.

Mixed storage onions are also in that same boat of long storage ability so just hold them at room temp and hopefully you all have a little supply to hold you for a while.

Curly kale is our bunching green this week   My daughters favorite thing to do with this kale is kale chips.  Simply rub them with oil and bake at 250 for 20-30 minutes or so.   You can season them any way you like.

Ají rico is a mild red chili with fruity flavor and tolerable heat level, you can use these raw they are mild enough for it, or sautéed they have even less heat but good flavor.

Jalapeno  these are so good roasted or you can make them into a spicy sauce or marinade by cooking them with some garlic and blending them with oil or other things.

Basil is our herb for the last week and goes well with the peppers, onions or garlic for some great stir fry or on homemade pizza or pasta dishes.

 Thanks to everyone who was with us for our thirteenth season of farming here!  Your support and participation are greatly appreciated and I hope you enjoyed all the veggies and fruits!  There were a lot of great crops and flavors to enjoy throughout the season, both on our plates, and in the fields.   I know I gave it my all this season.  What keeps me going personally is the ultimate goal of providing lots of healthy fresh organic crops to enjoy so all our families can eat locally and to farm the earth sustainably without chemicals, and GMOs.  I would like to think that it makes a small difference which works towards a greater goal then just us.  I am very proud of all of you, all the employees, my family, and myself for being part of this big picture together.   Hopefully we will see the majority of you back for another season next year.   Sign ups for next season from returning members can begin anytime but you will receive e-mail reminders on the progress of sign-ups and preparations around the new year.   Generally early sign-ups are encouraged to help the farm start up again bringing in the seeds, fertilizer, soil, equipment, supplies, etc… that we need to prepare for a successful planting schedule to be executed properly.  These events happen very early in January through March despite the lack of field activity. In fact by February we will then be planting like crazy in the greenhouse again growing thousands and thousands of transplants, stacking up hours of labor again, and spreading tons of plant based compost over the semi-frozen fields. It is all a cycle constantly moving in rhythm to our climate and cycles here in Wisconsin and this late fall early winter months prepare us for reflection, vacations, and continuing education, not to mention healing physically in preparation for a new cycle.  Many other less exciting organizational projects await this winter as well like itemizing seeds and receipts.   Getting to everything that the season did not allow time for is important in the off season as well like vacation before things get crazy busy again including greenhouse and other farm repairs, home repairs, and plenty of paperwork and numbers to crunch.  I will work on clearing out trees and undergrowth which is always creeping in on a few of our fields as well.   The dense undergrowth of some areas always encourages more deer activity and in some areas decreases light too much.   On our 2 acre farm every square yard is valuable space!  Of course I am also looking forward to getting some rest for the body, family time with the kids who have been very patient with working nonstop,55 and the holidays too.   It was a challenging and beautiful journey as always and I enjoyed growing for you all!  Have a great fall and winter, come see me for your veggie needs at market, and from my family to yours, thank you!

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