Elysian Fields Farm
Wednesday June 25th, 2003
|Summer Squash or Cucumbers|
|Sungold Cherry Tomatoes|
| || |
I would like to introduce you all to a different sort of CSA program, different from Elysian Fields at least, in the products that are offered.. This CSA program, in conjunction with my own, could offer you the potential to buy the majority of your families food locally. Nu Horizons Farm, specializing in a variety of locally grown meats, bread, jams and sauces, has started a CSA program in which members can order their produce online and in advance to their pick up date. Here is how the program works. A Share holder will be entitled to select and order the value of their share each week for 18 out of 26 weeks from the selection of products offered on the farms CSA web page. A full share is $30.00 a week ($500.00 total), while a half share is $15.00 per week ($250.00 total). Rolling enrollments of six month periods are available at any time through out the season. The 'season' begins on the first day of the month following your enrollment day date. Nu Horizons products are antibiotic, hormone, steroid and animal byproduct free. The livestock is pasture raised, beef, pork, lamb and chicken. Farm fresh brown eggs are also available from free-range chickens. Personally I can say my own experience with Nu Horizons Farm has been one of great satisfaction. I rarely eat meat, but when I do, I make sure it is local and raised sustainably. Nu Horizon's bacon has become one of my favorite treats, and their bread I buy religiously. So, for all who are interested, please check out the web site as listed above.
Here on the farm this week we have been receiving plenty of sunlight and hot weather. Things are growing well with the onset of this summer weather, and believe it or not irrigation will be going tomorrow. Aside from harvesting, this week and late last week we have been working on more weeding, trellising and fertilizing. We have also started spraying the summer tomatoes with an organically approved insecticide call Dipel. Dipel's active ingredient, BT, Bacillus Thuringiesis, leaves no harmful residue and can be used up to the day of harvest. The Dipel is used to fight Tomato Fruitworms (which bore into the fruit and render it unable to harvest) and the Hornworm (which is a very large green caterpillar that can cause some pretty severe damage to the foliage of the tomato plant).
As a fun side note, we celebrated my 28th birthday yesterday, after a great day of harvesting!
Summer Squash, Cucurbita pepo. Zucchini, patty pan, yellow crookneck and staightneck squash comprise the most popular summer squash available. A new variety in recent years called Zephyr, is half yellow and have green and very sweet. I have grown this variety along with yellow crookneck and zucchini. You have received a mix of the three and will so through the season. Summer squash is approximately 94% water, very low in calories and is a great source of vitamin A, C, potassium and calcium.
To store, put in plastic bag in refrigerator for up to one week. Summer squash can dehydrate quickly. Cooked, pureed summer squash may be frozen for an addition to or as a base for winter soups.
To eat, try raw summer squash sticks with dip, grate or thinly slice into green salads, or shred to make a squash slaw. Steam squash whole or halved to best retain texture. Cook 1-2 inch diameter squash for 10-15 minutes. You can also stir fry summer squash with other summer veggies.
Members have been receiving a good consistent amount of potatoes so far, and case anyone is having trouble eating them all before the next weeks delivery, be assured that most potatoes will hold at room temperature for up to two weeks. You want to store them away from light. For longer storage, potatoes will hold best at 45-50 degrees, high humidity and darkness. If their environment is too warm they will sprout and shrivel, if too cold the starch will turn to sugar.
What to look forward to...
Happy to say that we picked our first ripe red tomato on Monday. So far it is the only one, but once one comes, the others follow in due time. We should have some tomatoes for shares next week, as well as more Sungold cherries for all. The first blueberry was eaten on Monday as well, once again, and just about the only ripe one in the patch so far. I anticipate picking to start early next week here so we may be able to see the blueberries in next week shares. Once the first planting of green beans goes by, we have a crop of purple snap beans coming on. These beauties are deep purple, although they turn greenish when cooked. The summer squash, cucumber, beans and basil are all planted in succession for continual harvest throughout the summer, so you will be seeing plenty more of them. The peppers and eggplants are flowering and putting on small fruits, as well as the winter squash. We will be seeing them later in July to early August. The corn is coming on as well, and planted in succession so that we will have a few weeks of harvest. A little problem with the corn earworm will affect yields from the first planting, which I will describe in more detail next week. Okay all, once again, let me know if you have any thoughts. Elise.
Elysian Fields Farm: Community Supported Agriculture