Farm Journal

Welcome to our farm journal!

Throughout the growing season at Old Fields Farm CSA, members are kept informed of the latest offerings harvested from the fields. The following are excerpts from notes and observations included within weekly updates from the 2014 season.

Spring: A new season begins...

We’ve made it through a cool, soggy start to the spring, then three fine weeks to summer, yes?! Thank you for your patience as we get our feet under us and systems in place, phew! Despite a slow start this spring, we anticipate a bountiful harvest and a long and wonderful growing season! Attached are a few photos.

Without further ado, the news you’ve been waiting for: The farm store will be open for produce pickup starting Saturday, May 31st at noon!

As a reminder to how things will work—this week all produce will be pre-bagged and stored inside the walk-in cooler. Under the big top white hoop house by the walk-in is the open air store. We will provide some directions to introduce you to our evolving system, but hopefully you will find everything you need to record your purchases. 

Pepper transplants

Pepper transplants

Greens and more greens...

Activity abounds here at the farm. We continue to seed, plant, and harvest as this weather triggers new growth, and of course more work! All is good, and especially right now as we have an abundance of greens ready for your next hardy salad of bold color and diverse flavor! Yes, friends, this is a gentle prompt to encourage those caught in the midst of busy lives to come by, slow down, and nourish yourselves. 

Summer: It’s steamy and verdant! 

Heat waves shimmered on the fields today... another way of confirming what we all know; its hot. The sea breeze kicked in weakly for a brief reprieve, but now all is still and the beads of sweat swell and run. We wanted this right?! After the prolonged cold and wet winter into spring, dare we complain?!

Herbs: We have parsley, oregano, cilantro, basil, summer savory, and lemon mint. We will harvest limited amounts by request for now.

Coming this week: carmen, revolution, and jimmy nardello peppers (3 sweet varieties), poblano (a bit hotter), and beans. 

From the Culinary Corner:

Steve has done it again... Spicy Kimchi!! Farm pac choi, farm Swiss chard, daikon radish, scallion, garlic, ginger, fish sauce, and Korean red chili powder.

Steve's kimchi!!!

Steve's kimchi!!!

Spinach Balls made by my sister Marsha. Consider them a vegetarian’s (and omnivore’s) delight either cold as a finger food or warmed with oil on pasta or in your favorite red sauce (instead of a meatball!), truly delicious. Made of spinach, mint, a few bread crumbs, eggs, onions, and assorted herbs!

Yes, condiments for every occasion!

See you soon and keep cool...

Carmen, revolution, and jimmy nardello peppers (3 sweet varieties), poblano (a bit hotter), and eggplants are here and will be steady through October! Tomatoes are large, green, and are bursting into their many shades of red!

We have parsley, oregano, celeriac leaves, cilantro, basil, summer savory, and lemon mint. We have harvested small amounts to keep fresh, but we are most willing to harvest larger quantities if you chase us down; we’re usually somewhere about. You might even enjoy walking out to the gardens and see what you have invested in while scanning for us in the greenery. We have copious amounts of all!

Mighty fine late August weather and the height of produce season! We are teeming with fine vegetables in the walk-in cooler and much more awaits picking in the fields. 

Autumn: Harvest season rolls along...

The harvest season rolls along. Barely mid September... we are in full stride here. We are overflowing, brimming, just plain immersed in a fine assortment of vegetables and fruit both picked and awaiting space to store after picking!! Attached are photos of a few of our bountiful offerings.

It’s your CSA, come on over and immerse in your investment. If you don’t see something you desire, we’re around, find us and we’ll gladly help.

We are offering you nearly 40 varieties of fruits and vegetables, come and indulge!!

Cucumbers: Both slicing and pickling!! Also, Mexican Sour Gherkins! These are incredible little watermelon shaped and colored morsels...check them out...great for any type of pickling!

We had a touch of nip last Thursday night. The lower meadow suffered a light frost, so summer squashes are done growing for the year, but there is still patty pan in the walk-in. We harvested all the butternut down there and most of the pie pumpkins, yet those vines seem fine. The top leaves of the beans in the upper garden browned a bit, but the flowers are fine and the fruit is maturing. Otherwise only the basil seemed a bit tender with the chill. So, we are past the first deep chill and foresee an extensive period of fine growing weather ahead!

Oliver 1955.jpg

End of 2014 season...

First, we wish to thank you for contributing to a successful season of growing produce! Your investment in our CSA provided us all with ample vegetables and fruits through an extensive season over 25 weeks. 

Some initial news for 2015...

We developed new systems for irrigation, plot management, succession growing techniques, compost mineralization, cover crops, and minimal to no-till raised beds during the course of this year. All of our nine plots are now ready to plant next spring! Yes, all are set to raised beds, have been composted, seeded (depending when and our intent) with three different cover crops, and the garlic is planted and mulched! From our perspective this is huge: soil biological activity remains intact; the mineralized compost becomes webbed to the soil structure over the course of the winter; weed pressure will be easily a tenth from those areas tilled this year (based on observations seeding directly into composted no till beds); and all of this allows for intensive nutrient rich growing conditions.

What does this mean for all of us in 2015? We can access beds for seeding much earlier in the season, which allows us to provide a greater variety of greens, alliums, and roots earlier, and this with no disruption to the soils!

In January we will contact all of you about our plans for the 2015 growing season such as crop selection, membership details, and any other pertinent thoughts and a follow up survey.

So again, thank you all and be well.

Brad and Mary