Native berries, native bees.

We’ve been fretting over the share this week. It seems we are stuck in a quiet space between harvests. Spinach and mustard greens, that we had planned on including in these early baskets, have long since gone either to seed or to flea beetles. And the juicy, fruity, summer fun things – green beans, tomatoes, summer squash – aren’t quite here yet. And why are the carrots taking so long?  In our winter seed ordering and calendar planning, we had glorious visions of each weekly basket being evenly stocked with an allium, a fresh root vegetable, a cooking root, fresh greens, and braising greens. Yes, well. We are working on it still and we’ve since learned some things.

One thing we’ve learned is how to make sunshine out of flea beetles in the mustard greens: collect chokecherries instead. Over the past couple days, we harvested 17 pounds of chokecherries from trees on the farm. Neither of us had ever done anything with chokecherries, so we did some quick internet searches and sat down with the native plants and foraging books. Turns out chokecherries are a mega antioxidant and they make for fantastic sorbet. The recipe we used is in this week’s CSA newsletter.

And Cycle Farm CSA has new, lovingly handcrafted, produce bags. Hooray!  One of our wonderful CSA members and my mother volunteered to make these for us – THANK YOU. These are fantastic. We’ve been working hard on minimizing our off-farm inputs. Being able to use and reuse these cloth bags instead of plastic bags will make a big difference.

On a side note. We’ve been seeing LOTS of these little metallic green bees (Agapostemon) around recently. They dig the chicory. Native pollinators. Totally rad.

New friends, enthusiasm, and kale chips.

We’re in a bit of a dreamy daze around here since yesterday’s incredible turnout at the farm. Jeremy and I were looking forward to maybe a handful of people coming over. At the very last minute, Jeremy called his father to ask for some extra folding chairs – just in case. I figured, poor Jeremy, he’s a little stressed, maybe nervous, he’s plum lost his mind. There’s no way we’re going to need more chairs. So I set to making cookies, to buffer the disappointment if no one came; at least we’d have a whole lot of cookies to hang out with. Turns out we needed the chairs. And then some. We had over 20 people cuddled up into our cozy living room. Wow.

There were friendly, familiar faces and so many wonderful, new folks – and everyone excited about local agriculture and delicious, healthy foods. People so excited they are even eager to come out and volunteer! Willing weeders – right in our living room! Imagine.

CSA shares have started filling up. In efforts to try and keep things simple this year, we are limiting our shares.  Please contact us if you are interested. Here’s a link to a newsletter describing our CSA plan: Feb19_CSAnews.

Thank you all for joining us yesterday – for all your interest and enthusiasm. Up until yesterday, all our planning and ideas have been mostly limited to a Trish & Jeremy dialogue. Getting to meet everyone and share ideas was such a boost of momentum. We can do this. We’re all fired up.

Although, I might actually hear the brakes squealing a little this morning, as I am looking out the window at this new, thick, white blanket of snow. Slow down. Tomatoes in due time.

Thanks again – we are looking forward to growing vegetables and getting to know you all this season!