Summer’s Slow, Sweet Farewell – CSA Week 16 Newsletter

 

Wanna talk about the weather?

We do that a lot these days. It’s not bad. It’s more meaningful than many popular conversational topics, I reckon.

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So. I love this weather. And I love this summer’s slow fade. After the intense spring season, this feels like a hammock in the sunny breeze.

IMG_2229 Sometimes, literally.

There is still so much work to do, and sure, we’ve been doing a lot of it. But it feels much more relaxed, less life-and-death. Pull a clump or two of tall grass seedheads out every trip out of the field, but not launch a project to weed out entire rows, or commit total weed genocide.

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The mellower temps make harvest less intense as well – things aren’t going to wilt in minutes if not cooled, and ice blocks survive for much longer in the unpowered old chest freezers. Waking with the sunrise now often means sleeping in by springtime standards, and the skies darken absurdly early. Is this really so surprising, year after year?

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So it is cooler, but still surprisingly and wonderfully warm. We’re past the average first frost date by a week now, and haven’t given in to firing up the woodstove yet. The WWOOFer musicians have been sleeping out in the starry breeze in The Clearing on The Hill. The literal snowbirds fly over our heads and make us contemplate our own coming migration … as we sit out comfortably in the t-shirt sundowns.

doing dishes at sunset
doing dishes at sunset

Hopefully it holds to some extent through the first couple weeks of October, because we’re going to have our first ever event on the farm –  a potluck for friends of the farm.  (If you’re reading this, that almost certainly includes you.)

After a month with us, WWOOFer Bryan is heading back to Chicago today – with plans to return for the potluck. I love the connections that WWOOFing forges; there is just something about living within a farm, maintaining the living system, together.  Here’s some of the things Bryan saw and captured over the last two weeks … followed by a haiku he left behind for us:

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Goodbye to tickling
black flies, friends fresh as summer
fruits of sun-washed love.

CSA Box 16

Harvest went smoothly today, even with the return of salad mix. We had a big crew that all know the ropes, and things are just simpler at this time of year – we can harvest some crops the evening before, and overall, the field is settling down. It was still a challenge to get everything in the boxes, even as Kristin started harvesting more stuff in case they were too empty …

  • September Salad Mix (lettuce, pea tips, spinach, arugula, tat soi, mizuna)
  • Green Tomatoes – it is time for Fried Green Tomatoes! Maybe? Or try one of these green tomato recipes.
  • Tomatoes – the last of the season!
  • Ground Cherries – I like opening up several at a time and munching them all at once, to blend the varied flavors.
  • Kale – Put a little in everything. Or get creative, and try one of these recipes that have been deemed creative.
  • Butternut Squash – easy to peel if you want to cube it up and sautee it. Or halve it and roast the whole thing.
  • Pepper Party – Those late bloomers are finally starting to produce! If they are orange, they are hot, but other than that you get to play Pepper Roulette, same as I do (today’s lesson for me was that yes unripe green cayenne peppers are just as hot as ripe ones are).
  • Broccoli – This has been the best year yet for broccoli on our farm – perhaps due to the regular rains and/or our improving soil and composting … hopefully having a little broccoli regularly is something you enjoy as much as we do.
  • Beets (mostly Chiogga variety)

Shareholders Paul & Elizabeth sent in these pics:

“Elizabeth cooked up a gem!! QSF halved squash baked at 350 with  sausage. At 45 minutes 90% of previously diced QSF eggplant, three kinds of diced QSF tomatoes, diced QSF onion (all mixed with olive oil and a bit of vinegar). At 1 hour the last 10% of the diced veggies and some of the mozzarella we made for five more minutes.”

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YUM.

 

More pics from this week:

 

prints in the muck - they lowered the Croix by 8 feet upstream of the dam for repairs, so we went to check it out with Kristin's folks
prints in the muck – they lowered the Croix by 8 feet upstream of the dam for repairs, so we went to check it out with Kristin’s folks

 

this snake may have bitten off more than it can swallow
this snake may have bitten off more than it can swallow

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stacking the free insulative firebricks we scored for the greenhouse rocket mass heater (TBD)
stacking the free insulative firebricks we scored for the greenhouse rocket mass heater (TBD)
holy basil hillbilly hottub bath remnants
holy basil hillbilly hottub bath remnants

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