CSA Week 17 Happenings

Wow. It’s hard to believe how quickly this season shot past – it’s already October, and next week will be the final box of 2017. What!?

It may not be all that cold, but the weather still makes it clear that big changes are afoot; lots of wind, storms, and rain – last night alone we had over 3 inches fall.
impressive overnight rainfall!
impressive overnight rainfall!
You know it rained a lot when there are puddles atop a hill that’s essentially a sand dune!
wind and rain took this tree out - and very nearly our outhouse
wind and rain took this tree out – and very nearly our outhouse
And when we went to harvest the salad greens for the farmer’s market on Saturday, we discovered that a patchy frost had left thin crusts of ice on the lowest-lying leaves. This forced us to delay salad harvest until the sunshine hit the field, thawing the tender greens while still attached to their roots (if picked when icy, they wilt when they thaw out). First frost of the year … the countdown to the Killing Frost is on now for sure.
Let’s see, what else … a 3-week old baby goat from the Munch Bunch came to stay with us over the weekend, and it was just as cute as you’d expect.
We’ve been busy preserving the autumn bounty – smoking and dehydrating peppers, and making ground cherry jam and spicy salsa.
apple prep squad - peelers, cutters, and crushers
apple prep squad – peelers, cutters, and crushers
And just when we could see the end of the apple pile, neighbor Russ Hanson let us come forage another four bushels from the many dozens of trees that his father had planted.
smoker in the background full of peppers, pressed-out apple pulp in the foreground
smoker in the background full of peppers, pressed-out apple pulp in the foreground
Ripe raspberries have been popping up from the scraggly little bushes we planted a couple years ago, grapes in an unprecedented abundance from the vines our friend Paula gave us  around the same time, shiitakes from the log pile, and apples on one of the old and one of the new trees.
Kristin harvesting apples while Gabe juices a different batch
Kristin harvesting apples while Gabe juices a different batch
The voles tunnel network has been found passing right on through the potatoes, and the turnips, and the carrots … fortunately, we planted far more than the tiny little terrorists can devour. The deer are everywhere you drive in the dusk, and they’ve have been sneaking in to eat the leaves from our baby strawberry plants – but leaving us the fruit, which is a nice concession. Or maybe it’s a rabbit?
Kingsbury watches for intruders from his favorite perch
Kingsbury watches for intruders from his favorite perch
The home invader mice are scarce, compared to last year’s rodent blitzkrieg. A big pileated woodpecker flies from oak to oak in the front yard when he thinks no one is around.
The week went by quickly, looking back – but at the time, every moment was forever, and it sure was a nice time.

the Second to Last Box:

Butternut Squash – Great for soup, and this here’s soup season fo sho.  It’s a darn versatile squash, you can go sweet or savory with it … let us know if you do an experiment that rocks!
Leeks –  hey, these are great with soup, too … and we included potatoes so you could do potato leek soup, a fall favorite. Maybe I’ll rename this this Soup Box?
Red Potatoes yep
tater-dry-washing crew
tater-dry-washing crew
Fall Chop Salad Mix – torrential rain, or maybe hail,  blasted the spinach and tat soi in the night last night, but most other stuff was unharmed ….
Tomatillos –  you could make tomatillo soup perhaps? These also pair well with your peppers and cilantro.
Jalepenos – these are hot if used whole, but you can declaw their heat by removing the seeds and their surrounding membrane, if you are cooking for anyone sensitive to spice.
Assorted Sweet Peppers – if it’s not a jalepeno, it’s not spicy!
Cilantro –  best cilantro we’ve ever grown. Sorry if you’re one of the unfortunate folks who lack the ability to enjoy this flavor.
Cutting Celery –  chop up finely for the tasty celery flavor (it’s not easy to eat whole, due to the strong fibers)
Tomatoes –  we only had room in your boxes for a few this week … but also, the plants have definitely felt the coming of autumn; the field tomatoes are almost all kaput, and even the high tunnel plants are slowing way down now/
Widget's paw print in a tomato that got in her way
Widget’s paw print in a tomato that got in her way
Ground Cherries –  if you can avoid simply eating them all plain, these are great in salads, pancakes, muffins, oatmeal …
ground cherries on their way toward jam
ground cherries on their way toward jam
Kristin's dad Jim helping install the solar panels, using a frame he and his son Joe welded for us
Kristin’s dad Jim helping install the solar panels, using a frame he and his son Joe welded for us
wood-fired bathtub season is upon us
wood-fired bathtub season is upon us

a flower ... no, it's the stub of a bok choi
a flower … no, it’s the stub of a bok choi
Azela's "Shrek" farm feet
Azela’s “Shrek” farm feet

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