Wednesday, June 19, 2013

June 19, 2013

In Your Share
·         Buttercrunch Lettuce
·         Onions
·         Kale
·         Carrots
·         Kohlrabi
·         Snow Peas (large, flat, edible pods) or
·         Sugar Snap Peas (plump edible pods)

Glazed Snow Peas
Melt 2 Tbsp. butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat.  Add 8 ounces snow peas, 1 bunch chopped scallions, a pinch of sugar and ¼ c water.  Cover and simmer 2 minutes, then uncover and boil until the water evaporates, 2 more minutes.  Season well with salt.

What’s Happening on the Farm
It’s hard to believe it is mid-June already.  Weeding and cultivating keep us pretty busy as well as shooing those pesky gnats away.  Will they ever leave?  It’s great to see flowering peas, and nothing tastes better than a pea picked and eaten in the garden! 
The last of the cabbages have been planted (I think I mentioned that before, but they finally, really did all get planted).  Another bed of green beans has been planted and the tomato cages have been put up.  Many of the heirloom varieties of tomatoes are indeterminate which means that they can grow to be eight feet tall or more.  Determinate are bushy plants.  Bushy plants would be much easier to manage, but I am partial to the Amish Paste Roma and Rose Tomatoes, so I use concrete reinforcing wire to make sturdy cages to try to contain their voluptuous growth habits.
The eggplants, peppers and tomatoes have really hit a growth spurt with the recent sun and heat.  They are loving life!  Cucumbers are just starting to come on.  On the agenda are finding the carrots and beets – among the weeds.  The garden is never totally weed free.
I will be out of town so there won’t be a newsletter next week, but you will still get your CSA share.  Enjoy!

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

June 12, 2013

In Your Share
·         Romaine Lettuce
·         Onions
·         Kale
·         Carrots
All of these items are greenhouse grown – except the kale, to get an earlier start.

Panfried Kale-makes 6-8 servings
I large bunch kale                                                           3 or 4 garlic cloves
3 tbsp. olive oil                                                                Salt and black pepper to taste
1.      Thoroughly rinse the kale in cold water and tear into pieces
2.      Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium high heat.  Add the garlic and quickly stir it around to avoid burning.
3.      Throw in the kale and use tongs to move it around the skillet.
4.      Sprinkle in plenty of salt and pepper and continue cooking until slightly wilted but still a little crisp, about 2 minutes.
5.      Remove the kale to a plate and serve.
Kale is high in carotene and vitamin K.

What’s Happening on the Farm

Most plants and seeds are in the ground except some herbs.  Just when you think you can take a respite from all the work, it’s time to plant the second round of vegetables!  The cooler weather has been great to get work done outside like weeding and cultivating,  and the gentle rains have kept the ground soft.  Unfortunately the tomatoes, peppers, eggplant and zucchini would love some sun and heat!
Because of the cool, wet spring, many vegetables were put into the ground late, definitely later than last year, but last year was quite an anomaly and not the standard.  This year we took all of the hay  mulch off and used it on the tomatoes and the pathways.  I have created permanent beds and even squared the garden using the Pythagorean Theorem – remember that from geometry?  The permanent beds will make crop rotation a much simpler process (as long as I keep copious notes about what was planted the year before).  It also seems like it makes it easier to maintain the garden and keep the weeds at a minimum, except the pathways.  There are more weeds there than anywhere.  Always a work in progress!  We are also using a tractor pulled cultivator to keep the potatoes and sweet corn nearly free of weeds – which saves a lot of tilling and hoeing!  I admit, I have never spent too much time on the sweet corn, but I HAVE spent loads of time weeding potatoes. 
The early lettuce and spinach grown in the overwintering greenhouse are nearly finished and are being pulled out.  The heat loving crops have taken their place.  The cucumbers and some tomatoes are starting to flower as well as the peas outside.