This is the final week of spring. Next week summer starts and the days actually start to get shorter again. In today’s share we’ve got: Yellow Collards, Italian Flat Leaf parsley, Oregon Giant snow peas, Azure kohlrabi, Napoli carrots, hakurei turnips, Pink Beauty radishes, Sugar Snap peas, and Nevada lettuce.
If you haven’t had kohlrabi before it’s great raw or cooked, but I highly recommend peeling it, which unfortunately will eliminate the purple color but will make it much easier to chew. Tips on using all of the herbs and vegetables are always in abundance over at @cookwithwhatyouhave’s website so remember to take advantage of that perk of being a member of the farm.
In the field today we got more lettuce planted, and more trellising up. We still have a bit to go, but I’m hopeful that all of the climbing plants will be tied up and supported by the end of the week.
If you’re a summer CSA member remember to check your email for details on picking up. That should be in your inbox by Wednesday of this week.
Next week is the final week of spring. The week after we’ll transition to our summer shares.
For the final week of spring here’s what we’re looking at including in the share: pink beauty radishes, hakurei turnips, Nevada lettuce, parsley, peas, kale, carrots and kohlrabi are all possibilities. Summer squash and cucumbers will be here soon, but maybe not until summer.
I’ve been looking at the long term harvests, not just next week’s harvest. Many of the crops are looking great right now, potatoes and greens in particular, also the carrots and beets. I just reseeded parsnips to try to augment the thin germination/survival from the early seeding. Winter squash is also looking a little thin and we may try to reseed some of that, but it might be too late at this point. Our first crop of green beans may be a failure due to some pest (rabbits?).
We’re behind on trellising tomatoes, cucumbers and beans but those are all looking pretty good right now. Some of the lemon cucumbers didn’t make it but it’s still looking good for a good crop of slicers and we have a new Japanese variety in the hoop house I’m excited to try. We also did get quite a bit of the initial trellising done on Thursday – note the above photo of Laura pounding in posts in the tomatoes. With some luck we’ll be caught up on that by the end of next week.
As predicted, a bunch of new items in todays share to go with the shift in the weather. The snow peas are pretty solidly producing now and the snap peas are just about to take off. We’ve got some nice chard bunches, Samantha lettuce, and the first pinches of basil. Beets make their first appearance, both red and just a few gold beets too. The tops on all of the beets are good for cooking, and are essentially more chard. Two medium sized heads of fennel are in the share today, and we left the tops on for folks who want to cook with them or put them in salads. Green onions round out the share, making it the most diverse yet this season.
In the field we’re continuing our regular plantings of lettuce, endless irrigations, and our never-ending cultivating of the beds and pathways to keep the weeds down and to make room for expanding crops. With a little luck we’ll have some time later this week to start building trellises for the summer crops.
The summer CSA season starts in two weeks. We still have one or two spots left so if you haven’t reserved one yet let us know you want one by filling out the online sign up form. If you have signed up, great! And, I’ll be sending out an email to all of the summer CSA members next week so look for that in your in-boxes soon.
We got a little bit of a late start this winter, and it turned out there were some late cold snaps so that kind of worked out nicely. It does mean we’re about a week behind with our harvest plan on some things – like peas. On the other hand, we’re a little ahead on others, like spinach. With Basil it looks like we might be right on. The photo above is our newest farm hand, Chanelle hoeing the basil in our hoop house. We’re going to see if we can get the first pinch of basil in the share next week – just a little taste as primary purpose of pinching back the plants will be to get them to fill out and produce more basil in the coming weeks.
We’ll definitely have lettuce next week, probably our red leaf “Samantha”, more green onions, and more peas! I don’t usually like putting beets and chard in the same share because the tops are so similar, but it looks like those two are both possibilities. The chard has been hit hard by slugs and leaf miner this spring, but I think we’ll have enough. If not, the collards will slip in there. Radishes are on the list for next week, but might take another week. The fennel has been sizing up very, very slowly but I think next week we’ll harvest it no matter the size. Kohlrabi is also on the possible list, but that might need another week, too.
On our field work list, we made some good progress on hoeing this week but there’s always more of that to do. Our tomatoes and cucumbers are ready to start getting tied up so we have lots of trellising to put in. Only two more weeks of spring and it’s starting to feel more and more like summer!
The peas have just started this week and today’s share has the first of the snow peas. Our second plantings of spinach and arugula are looking great so there’s a good quantity of those. Lettuce continues with a new variety for us, Brown Goldring, that comes highly recommended for its flavor – the insects seem to like it too and there’s a bit of chewing on the wrapper leaves but I’m hoping the hearts will be a hit. Hakurei turnips continue, and we’re giving out the last of the choi this week.
In more news from the field: The beets were weeded today and are looking good. We also finally got around to planting some cut flowers in the you pick section for later in the year. We also already turned in the first of the spring planted cover crops to get ready for some summer plantings of cabbage and beets and the earliest bed has already been reseeded to beans. Summer is coming quickly.
Here’s my best guess at next week’s share, with the caveat that my batting average so far on these has been mediocre:
Romaine lettuce (or at least some sort of lettuce), and Hakurei turnips are the two items I’m pretty sure of. Lots of possibilities on greens and I’m not sure which yet but chard, spinach, arugula and kale are all in the running. I’ve been hearing good responses to the fava greens so I’m tempted to include those one last time before we let the plants put all of their energy into making beans. The fennel has been sizing up slowly, might still be a few weeks out on that. Similarly carrots and peas are looking close, but probably still have a couple of weeks. Beets are another that are on the cusp. There’s probably at least one more thing I’m forgetting.
Today we finally got all of the drip tape down for the season and we even had some time to start hoeing the mad flush of weeds that wet weather brought on. The fields are looking pretty good and the weather looks very promising for the near future.
This week’s share has the finest of the Hakurei salad turnips, Pirat butter lettuce, bok choi, collard greens, fava greens and green onions – a very green share.
Monday folks got fewer radishes than Thursday last week and we still had a few in the field so Monday gets the last of the D’Avignon radishes as well.
Beyond the herbs in the you-pick area this week we’ve opened up the last of the first round of spinach to you pick, and some regrowth on arugula. At the farm stand we have a bit of extra lettuce (pretty much a standard every week), and some chard. We may have a few other items as well on Thursday.
In the field today we managed to plant out the eggplant and get a lot of mowing done. We’re also back to irrigation duties as it look like we’re done with any significant rain for a bit.
Stay tuned Thursday for more notes from the field and predictions for next week’s CSA share.