West Hartford CSA Pickup- August 13

August 13, 2015 at 1:29 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

So, What Else is New?

You don’t need to read a newsletter to hear the biggest news from the farm. You encounter it each week when you arrive at the vegetable pageant that is Beth David’s social hall on Thursday afternoons. You experience it almost everyday when you make your own tomato sauce out of fresh heirlooms or bring an enormous cucumber salad to a potluck or send your kids to school with a lunch bag full of vegetables in every color of the rainbow or get creative enough to use every last zucchini in your share. You are aware- it has been a bountiful season. So what else is new on the farm?

We have begun the process of planting millions (yes, you read that right, millions) of cover crop seeds in areas where our 2015 harvest is complete. Remember the cauliflower, turnips, salad greens, and other early season crops? The ground that produced them is now covered in the little green sprouts of oats, vetch and buckwheat. Photosynthesis captures carbon from the air, so when we grow cover crops to build up organic matter in our soil we are both feeding next season’s vegetables and capturing the most troubling greenhouse gas from our warming atmosphere to store it safely in the earth.

Millions (yes, I did a little math) of pollinating insects feast on nectar from the farm’s flowering plants. Apparently the flower that comes before the tomato or melon is as delicious to the bees as the resulting fruits are to us. In a world where these essential species have an increasingly difficult time finding suitable habitat, our spray-free ecosystem full of wild and cultivated flowers is providing a much needed service.

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A butterfly visits a monarda flower on the farm.

Thousands of pounds of food waste have made their way from the Isabella Freedman dining hall to our seven foot tall compost heaps (those chicken bones, zucchini tops, and unfinished sandwiches really add up!). Through this holy mission of schlepping, the Adamah fellows have produced one of the finest organic fertilizers in New England while learning to be better leaders, community members, and change makers by rooting themselves in the land. They have sung hundreds of songs, pedaled thousands of rotations when cycling from farm field to farm field, studied dozens of texts, discussed countless world altering ideas, and eaten at least one squash a day all summer.

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Talya watches the sunset over the compost piles and fields on Beebe Hill.

Hundreds of guests have seen food growing in the ground, eggs popping out of chickens, and warm goat milk streaming steadily into metal buckets during farm tours and Jewish environmental programming here at Isabella Freedman. Time and again, I watch the same look of surprised recognition as kids and adults alike identify growing cilantro by the smell or beets by digging down in the soil.

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We have pickled over one thousand jars of cucumbers, harvested at least 100,000 (rough count) berries, and made hundreds of jars of jam. You can purchase our products at our next CSA pickup market on Thursday, September 10th.IMG_6999

 

The farm here at Adamah does many things, not the least of which is to feed you and hundreds of other people a diverse diet of fresh, nutrient-rich, organic produce. Thank you. Your support helps us be the best farm/wildlife refuge/educational space/picklearium we can be!

-Janna Siller and the Adamah Farm Crew

Join us next week for Adamah Farm Vacations. Call the Isabella Freedman registrar (860.824.5991) for a special CSA member rate to come up for the day!

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Harvest Notes- Week 10

Sun Jewel Melon This single serving, Asian melon has a crisp, mild flavor. They may look like a funny cucumber, and that is because they are closely related. Cut them as you would a cantaloupe.
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Cantaloupe These are some of the sweetest I’ve ever tasted! Enjoy them while they last as we have a short melon season here in CT.
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Green Bell Pepper We are excited to welcome one more heat loving crop to high summer harvest! Store in fridge in a tight crisper or bag.

Garlic This garlic is now dry enough to be considered “cured” so you are free to store it outside of the fridge without compromising quality.

Cucumbers Still going strong!

Summer Squash You’ll find yourselves less inundated with these notoriously prolific early summer veggies as August advances. Only the two green varieties of squash are left for the rest of the season.

Green Beans Try these lightly steamed to maintain their bright green color and nutritional profile, roast them, sauté them with garlic, or just eat them raw! This is likely the last week of beans.
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Cherry Tomato As with all tomatoes, these will hold their flavor best if you don’t refrigerate them. If you don’t eat them in the next couple of days, however, you will need to do so.

Eggplant These Italian eggplant are growing beautifully. Unfortunately, the long, thin Asian variety didn’t germinate so we won’t have any of those for the season. There is always next year!

Tomato Why do these tomatoes taste so much better than grocery store tomatoes? Freshness helps, of course, but the fact that they are heirloom varieties bred for taste rather than ship-ability is key. Savor them as we may only have a few more weeks!

Parsley This would be a good week to make tabouli out of parsley, tomatoes, cucumbers and bulgar.

Basil Keep your basil dry to avoid blackening of the leaves and use sooner rather than later.

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