THIS WEEK'S HARVEST
New Desiree Red Potatoes, Heirloom & Slicing Tomatoes (See Week 9’s newsletter for variety descriptions), Jimmy Nardello Italian Frying Peppers & Sweet Bell Peppers, Red Ace Beets, Baby Celery, Walla Walla Sweet Onions, Italian Late Softneck Garlic, Curly Green Kale, Rainbow Chard, Easter Egg Radishes, Striped Armenian Cucumbers, Olympian Cucumbers, Summer Squash and Zucchini, Rainbow Carrots, Sarah’s Choice Cantaloupe Melons, Salad Mix (with mustards, arugula, and salanova lettuce), Blonde Sweet Romaine Lettuce
Dragon Tongue Green Beans: 8 pint (1 gallon) limit this week! See below for a green bean “dilly bean” pickle recipe
Husk Cherries See week 8’s newsletter for harvest tips
Cherry Tomatoes: No limit this week! See week 7’s newsletter for varieties
Frying Peppers: Shishito, Black Hungarian, Padrón / See Week 2's newsletter for harvest tips
Jalapeños: Located below the frying peppers
Herbs: Italian Basil, Tulsi Basil, Thai Basil, Purple Basil, Italian Parsley, Rosemary, Lemon balm, Lemon Verbena, Perennial Cilantro, Annual Cilantro, French Sorrel, Onion Chives, Garlic Chives, Shiso, Tarragon, Oregano, Thyme, Chamomile, Mints, Dill, Anise Hyssop (*New Italian, Thai, and Purple basil plantings on the west side of the garden.)
New Desiree Potatoes: We dug up our first potatoes this morning! “New” potatoes are potatoes that harvested fresh while the plant is still green and the skins haven’t hardened. They are crisp, turgid, fresh vegetables and something of a delicacy. They’ll be limited to 1.5 lbs per share this week. Try making home-fries to show off their flavor.
Sweet Romaine Lettuce: The Romaine Lettuce coming out of the field this week is exceptional. We’ve been enjoying it drenched in a classic Caesar salad dressing with a hard-boiled egg over quinoa.
Beets: Beets are back! That is all…
One of our favorite ways to preserve the harvest is pickling green beans, aka "Dilly Beans". They are a garlicy, tangy treat to throw on the plate next to pretty much any meal. Our new patch of Green Beans (Dragon Tongue variety) out in the main field is loaded and the picking limit will be 8 pints (1 gallon). It’s a great time to make a batch of dilly beans. Here is a solid dilly bean recipe.
TOMATOES FOR PRESERVING
Pick-up your tomatoes for canning or preserving this week before they are gone! Each share may take a 15 lb (season limit) big batch of tomatoes from the back table. You can take your 15 lb allotment all at once, or in smaller increments (7lbs this week, 8 lbs next week, for example). But get them now, because the late summer avalanche is almost over!
We’ll have a scale out for weighing. Please bring your own bag or box to take them home.
Preserving tomatoes… the easy way: A really yummy way of preserving tomatoes (sauce tomatoes, or heirlooms) that is slightly less involved than canning is… Halve the tomatoes and spread them on a baking sheet. Pour a little olive oil over them, and throw in some garlic and onions. Roast this concoction on on a low temperature until the water is reduced and the flavor concentrated. Take out of the oven and let cool. Put the saucy mixture into pint jars or bags and store them in the freezer for future use!
GARLIC TRIMMERS WANTED
We are looking for lovely volunteers for a meditative farm task — trimming garlic. Wherein… we will set you up with a seat and some nice scissors and you can trim garlic ‘til the cows come home. Literally! Let us know if you are interested!
VOLUNTEER WEDNESDAYS, 8:00-10:00 AM
Interested in some farm therapy? Come out on Wednesday mornings to help us tend the garden and farm together! Find us in the garden or out in the main fields on Wednesdays from 8:00am 'til 10:00 am. People of all abilities welcome, we’ll find something comfortable for you to do!
We had a big, physical week out here on the farm this week... as most weeks in the August-September period seem to be.
We continued our big fall planting push (with beets, cabbage, scallions, escarole, sugar loaf chicories and Bok Choi transplantings); we renovated beds in the east half of the garden (out with the old cosmos and clarkia, and in with some new sunflowers, nasturtium, parsley and cilantro); and we made a big push to mow, compost, and prep about 2,000' of beds for the last round of seedings of plantings in the coming weeks that will feed us until the winter solstice. When we look on the calendar now, we can see the last major field plantings set for September 25th.
After the Autumnal Equinox, as the sun slips further south, the time it takes for crops to mature smears out to become longer and longer. In July, it'll only take 30 days for a transplanted lettuce to reach maturity, whereas a lettuce planted in late September will grow slowly, and then slower, and slower, until it is ready for harvest in early to mid-December. Though it is a bit of a guessing game knowing exactly when these late summer planted crops will eventually mature… given the relativity of how the lower light, shorter days, and affects their growth. But mature they will, and we've got a great Fall shaping up out there.
With that, we’ll leave you with some poetry from our veritable poet in residence…
Untitled — Summer Day
by Rebecca Harris
Was the first day of blackberry picking.
I wore shorts instead of pants
Hoping to be scratched.
I lingered near a bee folded in a white blackberry flower
Hoping to be stung.
Was the gentlest of all other days.
I wonder why.
What happens if I lay over there?
With my head in the sunlight and tall grass?
I can hear now already,
The stirring of small animals,
In places where I cannot see and am not allowed.
I saw a carcass of the smallest fawn I’ve ever seen,
Strewn on the path like a warning.
Where was the animal?
I think of my dreams last night.
How close I was to the mountain lion-
And her doings.
I find that I wanted to move closer,
As close as I moved to the honey bee,
My body aching for venom.
And for sight.
My bowl is only half full of blackberries.
Whey do I feel like am chasing the seasons?
They seem to be moving so fast.
Yet I know
That I am the one
Who will not hear the birds,
Who will not muse about their patterns
As one might try and comprehend
The bright pink of a striped petal,
Translate it into music
Or thoughts as
Smooth as a violin bow.
I know there are
Manzanita trees that have
Dropped their fruit.
Will I not make cider like
I am too fast,
I have to go home because my
And I have work in the morning,
And I have not even washed my face.
When was the last time that
I harvested the ground cherries?
Last week I think.
I imagine the wilting lavender
In front of my house,
Children I planted
As a gardener.
The deer sits alive in my mind on its haunches
Like a dog.
With all the wisdom of its killer.
Like food and liquor in its eyes.
by Rebecca Harris
Here they are,
With their wands of beautifully
Small sorcerers in the waves
Of earth, sky, and sea and the
Fire that helps us end and begin
Again in an orange rage and quiet
Yet they are not waving their hands
With flowers appearing.
They sink their hands into the earth
And start the children of
Of squash and red and yellow
Tomatoes with all the colors of fire
Alive in them.
Like fine teeth the farmers’ bodies
Comb the field as roots grow.
And with all of that work I’m sure
There are setbacks,
A smile turns into a mountain they
They argue with small
Or the dirt
Which has not been elegant.
But if you look at them closely,
You can see that they live within a
World as ancient as we feel inside…
All of the real things
Inside of joy.
Made by earth, sky, sea, fire.
And here we are combing the fields,
Walking as gently and curious
As combing our children’s hair.
Picking flowers and snap peas and
With the red of tomatoes
In their memories.
We remember don’t we?
Even though we may not have fields
Of our own,
I can feel the garden of my life
When I walk through their farm.
Our good friend and neighbor and CSA member Rebecca Harris has lived on this land for many years and walks through or by the farm just about every day. As you can see, she is also an incredible poet…
After a just a little begging, she was kind enough to let us share a couple of her poems in the newsletter this week. Thank you, Rebecca!
If you ever have something to share in the Farmer’s Log (writing, recipes, pictures, etc.) we’d love to share them in this Community Supported Newsletter!
See you in the fields,
David & Kayta
Illustrations by Kayta from the Heart of Tracking by Richard Vacha from Mount Vision Press