Well I suppose at this point most of you have had a week of produce, Welcome to Sweet Land! Paul and I and the crew had a good, busy week last week. Shifting gears, getting our harvest wheels back under us again. It's a big mental and physical push to go from straight farm work to incorporating 2 big days of harvest and distribution into the week. The first 4 distributions or so we start at 6, have a swing shift lunch of about 15 minutes, and then don't come in for the night until 8. Work. At the beginning we wonder how we can possibly fit in more work, but then it happens. These past couple of weeks have been an intense blur of planting. A friend drove by the farm at the end of last week and asked if we had planted the entire farm that week. Not quite, but not far from it! We put in all the warm weather transplants at the beginning of June, we grow a bunch of them, so they account for a sizable amount of acreage. Whew! The crew got everything in and then it rained and rained. Glory be, because during that flurry of planting we were also setting up irrigation for the whole farm to make sure that once we planted it we'd get to keep it. Things are growing now. We are sure that each morning the plants are bigger than the day before. It still amazes me that plants grow.
Now I can feel the farm shift from planting to maintenance - irrigating, cultivating (tractor speak for weeding), cover cropping, bare fallowing, harvesting. There's still planting to be done up until around the middle of September, but at a much more spaced out pace.
So! How did all of you like the One Bag Side and the Free Choice Side style of distribution? Let me know with and email. It's a new system and we'd love any kind of feed back. We're always trying to figure out better ways to divide up the harvest so that as many people as possible are happy with their share. Maybe you can imagine how difficult that is - here's the questions we face: what do people like to eat? how do we balance that with the amount of money and time it takes to grow that particular crop? how much will people eat a week? how do we account for everyone's different tastes? (375 families probably don't all eat the same thing for dinner every night), how can we stretch the season to provide as much variety as possible, again balance by the cost of production and how much work it takes?
So, the One Bag and Free Choice is our solution right now. Our idea is that members can really tailor their share to what their household eats because of all the built in choice, and hopefully will not take anything that they don't really want. If you can imagine it from the farmers' side, it takes a leap of faith to put all that food out there and then say "take what you want!". The risk, of course, if that we would have a huge run on something and run out. A CSA farmer's nightmare. But, nothing ran out and it all seems to be working. Again, send us some feed back.
The Veggie Forecast (please note, this is a forecast only)
chard, kale, spinach, komatsuna, green and red mustard, broccoli raab, pac choi, potatoes, cabbage, celeriac, rutabagas, beets, herbs