It’s always a bittersweet week; saying goodbye to everyone. We had a great and dedicated work-force this year and it was our pleasure to have workers return and new workers become part of the farm crew. We also enjoyed meeting everyone that stopped out to meet us and came to the farm events. You helped make it a great year and an inspiration for next year’s planning!
Even though there is a chill in the air and the regular season is over, there are still plenty of fantastic veggies to harvest! Our Extended Season shares are nearly sold out, but there are a few Winter Storage shares still available. See the descriptions in the “Join Us!” tab and contact us via email or phone.
Saturday’s crew cleaning up the tomato field
Getting ready to plant garlic
Cleaning onions and Celeriac
Spreading wonderful steaming, hot compost on the fields
Olivia, the hill-cat, enjoying a nice fall day
There is a hoop-house and a turkey tractor under that snow!
I know that there are delicious greens under that snow, just waiting for a few sunny, warm days! In a few weeks, we will harvest what is ready and begin re-planting for our spring greens.
Another sign of spring is Matt’s return to Wisconsin after a few relaxing months in Central America. Well-rested, he handled the 2 day layover in Dallas remarkably well as he waited to find the first southern Wisconsin airport that would re-open after the big blizzard of 2011. Now he seems ready to start planting some seeds!
We are excited about the veggies that we are planning on for 2011. We are looking forward to some of our old favorites and some mouth-watering new varieties. As we look out the window at all the deep snow, our eyes always seem to turn towards the fields as we daydream about feeding the soil that will grow healthy and nutritious vegetables for out next season. I know that those days will be here before we know it and there is plenty to do before the snow melts!
The membership is growing this year, and we look forward to meeting all of our new farm friends! There is still room in the CSA for more members and we have added another share size for members who enjoy canning or have large families. Although we are adding a few additional shares this year, we expect to fill up again fairly early in the season.
We still have some nice organically grown potatoes for sale, and we almost always have eggs available for sale before the CSA season starts. Feel free to call if you need eggs or potatoes or if you have questions about the CSA: 920-699-3658.
I know it is incredibly cold out there, but the sunshine and the seed catalogs and everyone’s excitement about the new season has me anxious to start planting. We are now accepting memership for the 2011 season!
Please visit the “Our Shares” page for information about this season’s shares and see “Join Us” to do just that! We are looking forward to another amazing season of veggies, farm events and to seeing our farm friends again! We hope that you will join us!
- Evan, Matt and Darrell picking cucumbers
From green beans to cucumbers, Cukes to corn. Just when we’ve had our fill of something, there is another to replace it. The early corn went out this week, and the delicious bi-color will be coming soon. Corn is easy to freeze and make other dishes with, but me-thinks you grow weary of cucumbers?
We’re taking a break from the green beans for now, but there will be more in a few weeks. What I am looking forward to the most is the edamame! The delicious soy beans (edamame) are filling out nicely and are sure to be a favorite for many of our new members soon. All of the summer melons are ripening and look great, although the vines are reaching far outside of their designated area and into the celery and celeriac. We’re keeping a close eye on that situation. You can expect to see some great melons in your boxes soon.
We still have several weeks of summer to look forward to and 11 more weeks of veggies, but our days are getting shorter. Last night was the most noticable to me. I was in at 8:30 and the light felt like 9:00. Although the cool-weather crops are something to look forward to, the short days are not. I am definitely a long-day variety.
All of the garlic has been pulled and is curing in the barn and the onions will be pulled next. The late-season crops are in the ground for the most part, although we will still be planting greens. Summer marches on and soon we’ll be thinking of autumn.
We still have green beans, summer squash and cucumbers available at the farm. Just give us a call if you need them!
So it appears that keeping the blog updated during the growing season wasn’t quite as likely as we had thought. Now our CSA season has come to a close, and we are already excited and looking forward to next year!
Sunday was a terrific day to end our season with many of our members, friends and potato-club enthusiasts helping us to bring the last of our potatoes in from the field. We had around 16 people picking up potatoes, and several more joining us for a baked potato lunch. All and all, about 35 people stopped by throughout the day! The sun was even out for the perfect fall day, and not a snowflake in sight. (Saturday farmer’s market was a bit chilly and blustery.) We harvested several more crates of ‘Dark Red Norland’, Yukon Gold’ and those creamy ‘French Fingerling’ potatoes.
Dark Red Norland potatoes
Thank you Casey and Evan for taking it upon yourselves to start washing all of those potatoes after lunch! (I wish we could offer a picture.) You are not only pro’s at veggie washing, but passionate about it!
And thank you to everyone who made it out here for the potato roast. We’re sure it will be a regular event in the future!
Part of our Wednesday crew; always smiling, Christy and Lynn Stuve.
Matt washing beets. What's that on the pallet?
One extremely large beet.
We are looking forward to having a new area to wash and box the veggies next year. Most of this barn addition will be used for that.
While the chickens are cleaning up the garden, the turkey’s are busy cleaning the crabapples off of my ‘Sargent’ crab.
And acting like big shots.
The weather seems a little more summer-like this week, but for last week’s deliveries, we were wearing fleece!
Fall crops are all planted and hoping for rain. I think all of the farm is hoping for rain. We have been irrigating daily, but there is nothing like a nice steady rain. The forecast looks like there may be some potential for that in the next few days.
Matt and company have been keeping up with the weeding thanks to some hard-working worker shares. it is such a pleasure to work with such good people!
We have begun the restoration/addition to our 100 yr old + barn during the past weeks. The barn has been in need of repair, so while we are doing that, we will also be adding on a vegetable washing and packing area.
Missing a milk house
The first to go was the old milk house that had been home to our smaller first flock of 9-12 chickens for the past 20 years or so. The milkhouse still had remnants of the water trough that was used to cool the milk in milk cans. The 2 ft thick walls were pretty much taken down single-handedly by our friend Dan, who has clearly had experience in demolition. On that day it was 97 degrees and humid!
Now, parts of the thick barn walls are gone too. I’ve been imagining what it was like for the people that were picking the rocks, making mortar, squaring the walls, hewing timbers and raising the barn over a century ago. Those must have been the “good old days”.
Next, we’ll be putting in water lines and pouring footings. I hope that we can re-use the same rocks for the new walls.
The following pictures are of the garden over the last few weeks. It changes daily, but each day is another pretty one.
Box 7, June 24 Peas, Beets, Carrots, Purslane, Cauliflower, Head lettuce, Boc Choi, Parsley, Green onions
Leah and Casey washing beets and carrots
The Stuves washing and bagging lettuce early Wednesday morning
Wednesday was a hot one. Many thanks to the worker shares for their help in harvesting, washing, and boxing all those veggies.
I hope you all are enjoying your food! We your appreciate feedback!
The last expected frost date has meant long days in the garden, planting and weeding and watching it all grow. Completed tasks this week have been laying out long rows of plastic covered mounds, transplanting 175 tomato plants, planting beans, purslane, beets, and lettuce, cutting, washing, and bagging lettuce and spinach for two farmers markets and our third delivery, plus lots and lots of weeding.
A special thanks to our six worker shares who have been indispensible in keeping the weeds at bay and in getting all of the lettuce from the field to the bags. The worker shares make a big difference, not only in terms of labor, but in the feel of the farm. It feels like a community effort and not just a business.
Cheryl mulching the garlic with newspaper and hay
Mike, Evan, and Leo laying the irrigation tape before the plastic mulch
Covering the plastic
Planting sweet corn
Rows of potatoes looking good