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Monday, July 9, 2012

Hand weeding is awesome!

"superstar" onions! in the share this week!

Hand weeding is awesome!

July is one of the busiest months of our season at Powisset Farm!  Our harvests are starting to become larger, filling our cooler with the heavier fruits of cucumbers, squash and potatoes!  Just as the harvests get larger, we are working hard to get the food out of the fields as quickly as possible, before the day heats up too much, making for a fast-paced, intense harvest morning.

In addition to all the harvesting I mentioned; we are also staking and twining tomatoes, setting up, running and moving irrigation equipment, mowing and discing old crops back into the soil, planting fall crops, cultivating on tractors and hoeing as fast as we can, and hand weeding more than we can even comprehend! We are also seeding our last few plantings of lettuce and brassicas in the greenhouse, harvesting our entire garlic crop and soon harvesting our near-acre of onions.

After harvesting and all those tasks that I listed above, among others, the rest of our time is spend hand weeding!  This season has been a challenging weed season due to all the rain alternating with those super hot days.  Thankfully, we have a wonderful summer crew, part time crew and regular volunteers who help us attack our hand weeding tasks like a swarm of bees—buzzing over the rows, pulling and thinning and changing the landscape of our farm from wicked weedy to sparkling clean.  On our busiest days there are 13 people working out in those fields—saving carrot plantings and freeing next years strawberries from suffocating in amaranth and purslane.  Thank you summer crew!!

Today 600 bales of straw arrived at Powisset farm, unloaded by Tessa and the summer crew for about an hour and a half!  One of our tasks this week will be to hand weed those strawberries planted for next season and mulch them with the straw that just arrived.  Once the straw is down, we’ll have a little brake from hand weeding that crop.  The mulch will keep the weeds down and keep the moisture in the soil.  If we had the time or money, I think that we would try to mulch our entire farm!

My hope for July is that it gets really hot and dry!  I want our tomatoes and melons to take off and stay disease free. I want to feel like all I can do at the end of the day is ride down to hale and fall into the lake.  I want to be forced to pull my cowboy hat out from behind the seat of the farm truck and use it, because a regular brimmed hat won’t cut it!  And I want to hand weed with the summer crew until every weed on the farm is gone.  Those feel like pretty fun goals for July!  Wish me luck!

See you in the fields,

meryl (on behalf of the Powisset farm crew)

What's in the share this week:

in the barn: lettuce, beets, carrots, fancy herb choice, basil, red gold potatoes, white bunching onions, choice of green: kale, chard, mizuna, squash, cucumbers

in the field: fava beans, yellow and green string beans, chard

Flower Garden Open for picking!

Hooray! It is time to pick and enjoy beautiful flowers from Powisset Farm!  As part of your CSA share you are encouraged to take home a small bouquet of pick-yer-own flowers each week from now until the flower garden succumbs to cold, fall weather.  Our farm apprentice, Jen, has selected an interesting and wonderful variety of flowers that are great for cutting.  We will be labelling the varieties so if there is something you want to plant in your own garden, you'll know what it is!  

In addition to pick-your-own flowers, we will be selling bouquets in the farm stand, so when you come for your share, check the egg fridge to see if there are any special bouquets that you would like to take home to enjoy.  We will also be selling sunflowers at the farm stand as well!  Yay flowers!


Here is a kale salad recipe passed to me by a long-time CSA member! (see below)

 If you are stuck and can't figure out what to do with your veggies, remember to check out the Powisset Farm recipe blog!  It's filled with so many delicious ideas for what to do with all this produce!  check it out at:
Kale Salad

1/3 cup Bragg Liquid Aminos or  tamari or I use light soy
1/3 cup lemon juice
1/3 cup flax seed oil or extra virgin olive oil 
1/2 any kind of onion you like. I use red onion and slice half moons
1/4 cup sunflower seeds
1/4 cup pumpkin seeds
1/4 cup sesame seeds
1 pound fresh Kale ( usually one bunch) or a little more
alfalfa (or whatever kind of sprouts you like)

Combine Bragg or tamari, lemon juice and oil, 
slice onions and let marinate in dressing
toast seeds until brown unless you have already toasted seeds
De-Stem Kale and slice into 1/4 in strips
Dress and enjoy.

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