In your box:
–Cucumber or summer squash
–Eggplant or cherry tomatoes
–Sweet onion or red onion
After weeks of nearly perfect growing weather, we finally had our first real weather worthy of complaint last week Monday night. A very isolated hail storm passed over at dinner time and sent down marble-sized hail for about ten minutes. This was the first real hail storm we’ve ever experienced, and the timing wasn’t all that bad, considering. While a spring hail storm can kill off small plants for the whole year, at this point most of the garden is established enough to handle getting pelted with hail. We did have a lot of “cosmetic” damage that doesn’t effect the quality of the crops. So if you see some dents on the summer squash and peppers, it’s just from hail and not bugs. It also shredded some of the leaves of the basil and lettuce, but the quality of these didn’t suffer from the storm. And at least we aren’t dealing with a series of hurricanes or four feet of rain!
Last week I mentioned that there was no “scientific” reason to not harvest beans after Labor Day, but I had a very strange experience this week that provided just the scientific, rational basis I needed. I headed out to pick just a few beans for our family two days after Labor Day, and as I approached I nearly stumbled upon a male pheasant who was nesting in the bean field. He took flight, almost from under my feet, and in doing so he…..loosened his bowels from the air. I know this sounds ridiculous, but the scared bird completely tainted the remaining beans in perhaps the most disturbing way possible, thankfully sparing me in the process.
A few years ago I was completely at one with nature when a sparrow landed on my arm while I picked raspberries. Spooking a pheasant with excretory problems definitely falls on the opposite end of the spectrum. But at least now I know to stay out of the bean patch after Labor Day!
This week we offer Celery for the first time of the season. For our first few years we grew a tough, dark green variety that had many small stalks. We just stumbled upon this “Tall Utah” variety a couple years ago, and it has easily become a favorite. Celery is great as a raw snack, and is also essential in soups. If you have more than you can use, just chop it into fine pieces and freeze for up to six months.
We are finally getting a decent crop of eggplant, so many of you will receive one this week. I don’t plant a lot of eggplant since they’ve never been widely popular with our audience. Unless you indicated a love for eggplant on your membership form at the beginning of the year, you will just be receiving one this year. Those of you not receiving eggplant will get cherry tomatoes this week and hopefully an eggplant over the next few weeks.
Mark your calendars—our annual Fall Festival will be on Sunday, October 1st from 3pm until 6:30pm. We hope you can join us for a beautiful day on the farm and a celebration of the nearing end of the growing season. We will have yard games, farm tours, hopefully some pumpkins to take home, and a potluck dinner. Please bring a dish to pass, table settings, and lawn chairs. Hope to see you on the farm!
Even after our late fall gathering, we will still have a few more weeks of fresh veggies from the garden. I’m still optimistic that we can deliver a box on the 19th week of the season, which will be in mid-late October. More details on that as we get closer. It looks like we’ll have a great harvest of Brussels sprouts and winter squash, as well as the usual salad greens and roots of fall during our last few weeks.
Expected next week: Garlic, Cucumbers, onion, summer squash, pepper, tomatoes, bok choy, parsley, potatoes, and lettuce.