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Friday, February 24, 2017

National CSA Day

Howdy Folks,

Today is National CSA Day! If you haven't already signed up for your 2017 CSA share today is a great day to do so. Follow the link below for CSA registration information.

https://secure3.convio.net/ttor/site/SPageServer?pagename=PowissetFarmCSA

We still have full and half shares available but they are going quickly. Don't miss out on your opportunity to share in the 2017 season.



News from the fields:

It's hard to believe we had multiple feet of snow on the ground just last week. It feels like spring outside today and it is downright hot in the greenhouse. As the snow melts away we are prepping the greenhouse and high tunnel for seeding. We are on the cusp of the 2017 growing! Next week we will start pressing thousands of tiny onion seeds into hundreds of potting trays.

With this blog post I am continuing my theme of "what a farmer does in the winter time". This morning Andrew and I headed to Ashland  to help some friends of mine skin their new greenhouse. "Skinning" just means installing the plastic sheet (or sheets) that cover greenhouses. These sheets are enormous. It takes a lot of planning, set up, and many hands to properly place a 100x40 sheet of plastic over the ribs of a greenhouse. With even the slightest breeze things can go south quickly. I've seen people lifted clear off the ground by an unexpected gust. Fortunately this morning we had ideal weather for the project.

Greenhouse skinning is reminiscent of a barn raising. A farmer puts the word out and folks come from far and wide to lend a hand. This morning we had a couple come from as far as southern Maine. We are really fortunate to have a strong and collaborative farming community in Eastern Massachusetts. People show up for one another in a way that I find refreshing and inspiring.

This winter we also have some major infrastructure upgrades we are working on at Powisset. Work will start soon to renovate our root cellar to replace the walls and framing damaged by the flood. We are also working with a well specialist to increase our well capacity and flow rate. I learned a lot last year about the limits of the existing infrastructure at Powisset Farm. We are taking those lessons and applying them to making smart investments in infrastructure and equipment to help improve and streamline our systems.

Until next time,

Farmer Z

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Sun set over the garlic field
 
Howdy Folks,

This is a mid-winter check in from the farm.

In case you missed it, CSA sign-ups are live! If you haven't yet renewed you can follow this link to the sign up page:

https://secure3.convio.net/ttor/site/SPageServer?pagename=PowissetFarmCSA


Over wintering scallions
This year we are offering two share sizes. The full share is a 20-week share. It is large enough to feed a family of four that likes vegetables. We are also offering a 10-week share, which will be the same size as the full size 20-week share, but will be picked up every other week. The 10-week shareholder will be assigned to pick up either even weeks or odd weeks for the duration of the summer. All shares must be picked up at the farm, and there will be opportunities to harvest pick-your-own crops. Please note that there are only a limited number of 10-week shares available, and they will be sold on a first come, first served basis until all slots are filled.

News from the fields:

Winter is the time for fixing equipment, hiring seasonal staff, professional development, budgeting, crop planning, providing a warm lap for the barn cats, etc. We have been busy attending to all of these tasks as well as taking some time to rest up so that we are able to deliver an exceptional CSA experience for you this season.


Picking up our bike powered root washer
after a much need overhaul
Spreading leaf mulch on the 2017 garlic field












The farm stand is closed during the winter months, though we do have self-serve eggs for sale in the bottle cooler. Eggs are $7 a dozen.

Livestock Manager Connor Young is also offering meat for sale to the public during meat share distribution hours at Powisset. The hours are 2-6, every other Thursday. The next distribution will be February 16th from 2-6.

For more information about the meat program follow this  link:

http://www.thetrustees.org/places-to-visit/csa/meat/meat-csa.html



We look forward to seeing you all this summer!

Zannah, on behalf of the farm staff

Friday, February 3, 2017

Powisset Past +Upcoming Events

Last week, we held a wonderful Indian cooking class led by Shruti Mehta. In the class, we made lentil fritters accompanied by lentil chutney (shown to the right), dahl, palek paneer and falooda (an interesting milk-based drink with rose syrup, basil seeds, topped with ice cream). Our next Indian cooking class will be held on a Saturday for once and will focus on the South India cuisine. It will be held on April 29th. The class should be posted on our web site within a few weeks.

Hopefully now that it is February, you are all aware that Valentines Day is right around the corner! We have several events lined up for both kids and adults. 
And we still have spots at our Ethnic Cooking Series: Italian & Pasta 101 class on Wednesday, February 8th. In this class, we will make several different types of pasta from scratch and sauce, of course. 

Looking for some activities for your kids during February Vacation week (which, by the way, is also right around the corner, February 21-24th). We have an array of activities from Donut Making, to Pizza & Board Games, to Kids Create a Complete Dinner (chicken tenders, root veggie fries, and more).

Chef Wanted - Powisset & Appleton Farms!

Are you a chef looking for a part-time opportunity this summer to serve up fresh, local food straight off the farm on Friday nights?  We are looking for two such people or one business that can be in two places at once to take on our Friday Farm Dinners- from the menu creation to the clean up.  You’ll need to ability to bring support staff (paid by you) and we provide the equipment, kitchens, the guests, and the beautiful farm settings.  These dinners are family friendly and casual with seasonal menus that match the atmosphere.  Check out this link for a taste of what we’re talking about: https://vimeo.com/132889856. If you are interested in learning more, please contact me at nnacamuli@thetrustees.org.

Meat Sale! 

On Saturday, February 18th from 10-2pm, Connor Young, our Livestock Manager, will be hosting Powisset's 3rd and final Meat Sale! Get our delicious grass-fed beef, free range poultry and our very own Powisset pork. We will also of course have eggs for sale.

Friday, January 20, 2017

Powisset Past + Future Happenins!

Last weekend, we hosted 4 families for "From Nest to Table" where we hung out with the chickens, learned about what they eat, what they do, collected their eggs, fed them some treats...and we even had some brave souls, hold them, despite their large flapping wings. After we were done in the chicken coop, we came back into the warmth of the kitchen to make mini-quiches with Chef Sara! Everyone got to choose what went into their quiche, but they all included our just-collected Powisset Farm eggs. Some included some Powisset Farm bacon and others stuck to just veggies. Our next session of "From Nest to Table" will be held on Saturday, April 15th (just in time for Easter)!

What's Coming Up?

Marathon Fundraising by Margie + Ariel (our awesome Thursday farm stand volunteers)
Our awesome volunteers are running the Boston marathon...yes, 26.2 miles! And to reach their fundraising goals, they are offering these fun events. I hope you can join one or both to support them!

Spin Class @ CycleBar in Wellesley - Wed, Jan. 26th, 7pm

And...a Valentines Day Dinner here at Powisset! 
Valentine's day is always tricky - bad, over priced food, crowded restaurants and impossible reservations.  We would like to offer you an alternative.  An intimate, four course dinner of local and sustainable foods.  Couples welcome, but we would love to host the non-partnered as well.  The night will include walks around the farm, bundled up fire pit cuddles, and beer and wine pairings to compliment each course.  The cost is $50/pp, $65 with pairings, and more alcohol for purchase.  All proceeds will go to Hale reservation.  The menu is attached, but subject to alterations based on what is locally flourishing.  This dinner will be limited to 20 spots, so reserve your place early.  

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Happy New Year! 2017 Events + Programs!


We hope you had a wonderful holiday and spent some relaxing time with family & friends! After our final program of 2016, Latkes & Lanterns (picture below), we are excited for all of the programs that we have lined up for 2017! 
Lovely latke makers grate potatoes

The first exciting bit of news for all of you meat lovers is that on Saturday from 10-2pm, we will be hosting our 2nd Meat Sale! Connor Young, our Livestock Manager will be on hand to chat with you about all things meat. We will be selling pasture-raised poultry, various cuts of pork and grass-fed beef.

And don't miss this week's awesome programs! Join Nicole Lewis on Sunday at 1pm for goal and intention setting at Revive, Refresh & Renew with Vision Board. No creative experience necessary.

Wednesday, Jan. 11th  is Tod Dimmick's Whole Grain Bread Workshop. If any of you have had Tod's bread which is sold from time to time in the farm stand, you know how addicting it is. If you would like to learn his secrets and also take your own loaf home, sign up now! His class has been known to sell out so don't wait.

We hope to see you around the farm!


Thursday, December 22, 2016

Happy Holidays + 2017 Events & Programs!


Last night we celebrated the winter solstice with Fondue Night! Our amazing French & Swiss volunteer, Christiane, led a demo, where we learned the process, which cheeses and wine are the best to use, and what can accompany all this cheese. Our cutest attendee (to the right) really enjoyed his first fondue meal!

Tuesday (Dec. 27th) is our last class on 2016! Come with the kids for Latkes & Lanterns. First we will grate, fry, & eat some traditional (and not so traditional) potato pancakes, then we will create our very own mason jar lantern!

And to give you a sense of what is coming in January....we have a full calendar:
We wish you the happiest of holidays and hope to see you in 2017!

Thursday, December 15, 2016

Winter Share 4

Wintery oat and pea cover crop
Winter Share 4

Our 2016 farm season wraps up this season with our final winter share distribution this Friday (12-4) and Saturday(10-2). Yesterday we had our final harvest of the year. Andrew, volunteer extraordinaire Mark, and I brought in the last of the kale and carrots. It is always bittersweet to reach this point in the season. It's another aspect of farming that we plan for and yet have no control over. This year we have experienced a mild fall and a decent amount of moisture. This has meant bountiful greens and big beautiful heads of cauliflower and broccoli. Carrots, a crop that was hit so hard by the drought, have reached a harvestable size and are sugary sweet. Yesterday as we rushed to pull the last carrots from the ground before it froze solid we witnessed a fox trotting through the fields. This is the time of year when the  farm is turned back over to the wild creatures that call Powisset home. A friend asked me the other day what my favorite season is and my response, somewhat to my own surprise, was winter. I love the quiet it brings and the wild rawness that envelopes the land. One of the questions I get asked most often is "what do you do in the winter". The answer is I keep farming. There are so many facets to farming that keep me busy through the winter; fixing equipment, ordering seeds, planning what to plant and where next season, hiring staff, writing my budget, attending professional development workshops, etc. The winter to do list is a long one.

The bountiful harvest of greens has also softened the impact of the loss of our crops stored in the root cellar. We take food safety very seriously and have zero tolerance when it comes to potential food contamination. The food in the root cellar had the potential of being contaminated by the leak therefore it was not distributed and has been composted. We are fixing the problem so that this issue does not happen again.


As it ends it begins. 2017 potting soil delivery.
We are expecting sever temperature lows tomorrow during distribution time. Because of this, on Friday only, we are moving the operation into the barn kitchen and classroom space. Temperatures are supposed to be more moderate on Saturday and the classroom space is being utilized for other activities.

This weeks share will be comprised of cauliflower, potatoes, carrots, kale, watermelon radishes, daikon radishes, rutabaga, popcorn, and spinach.

Farm Stand:
The farm stand will be open Friday and Saturday with all your favorite Powisset items

Jordan Brothers Seafood will be joining us on Friday from 1-4.

Pop Up Meat Sale and Demo:
This Saturday Livestock Manager Connor Young will be selling beef, pork, and chicken from The Trustees livestock program. He will also be performing a cooking demo with some samples and a q&a in the kitchen at 11am.

This will be last blog post for a few weeks. We will miss you all this winter but look forward to seeing you back on the farm next summer.

Be well,

Zannah, On behalf of the farm staff.