CSA distribution #5 & newsletter

Our next CSA distribution will be Monday April 30 and Thursday May 3. Below we’ll give more information on upcoming shares, events on and around the farm, and more ideas for using share contents. This week’s theme is “coming soon”, as it will likely be the last thin share for a while, with many more produce items getting very close to ready. However, milk & egg production are both quite high and we’d love to have people give these a try. We’ll also be hosting a last-minute birding/nature walk for CSA members Saturday morning, as conditions are perfect with lots of species arriving and active (see below for details).

BIRDING WALK SATURDAY 4/28
Given how active the migrating warblers and other birds have been, we’re intending to take a couple hours off and go birding on the farm Saturday morning. Our mix of forest edge and pasture (above left) offers a wide variety of habitats for warblers and more, and we’ve been observing nesting behaviors in species like Blue Jays and Bluebirds (above right). CSA members are welcome to join us from 8-10am, a great way to see the place and learn more about our natural ecosystems. We can almost guarantee a lesson in Broad-winged Hawk behavior, as last year’s nesting pair seems to have returned and have been quite visible lately. Please let us know by 7am Saturday morning if you want to come (email or phone), so we know how many to expect, and please arrive around 8 as we’ll be away from the roads after that and won’t be able to greet and guide latecomers.

PRODUCE

Garlic scallions
One more appearance for these; we expect to start seeing garlic scapes around mid-May.

Radishes
These are going strong with great flavor. Try roasting, braising, or pickling them, though we can eat many salads with radishes sliced on top.

Lettuce mix
Similar to last week’s mix. Quick reminder to always wash salad greens: a stink bug made it through our kitching rinsing and onto Joanna’s salad plate, and more distressingly, into her mouth. We sincerely hope that hasn’t happened to any of you. The amount this week will be slightly smaller, balanced by the next item:

Saute mix
One of our most popular items at market over the last few years, a mix of flavorful baby greens such as tat soi, arugula, mustard, beet greens, and more. These can be used raw, mixed with lettuce or alone as a rich-flavored salad, especially for those who like salads on the spicy side. They can also be cooked, especially sauteed with garlic and other flavors as a topping for pasta, a side dish, and so much more.

HERBS
Thyme
Oregano
Sage
Tarragon
Kentucky Colonel mint
Orange mint
Garlic chives
Chives
Catnip – this has a few aphids on it, but we’re assuming cats don’t care. Tell us if you’re taking it for tea.
Lemon balm

EGGS (SOLD SEPARATELY)
From pastured hens fed certified organic feed mix, fresh weed trimmings from fields, cooked on-farm meat & fat scraps, kitchen wastes, and other on-farm supplements. Eggs are $6/dozen and will be no more than a week old when distributed (usually just a couple of days). Yolks are bright yellow-orange; these birds are great foragers. There will be 4-5 dozen available on each distribution day.

FRESH GOAT’S MILK (SOLD SEPARATELY)
Milked every morning from goats now living day & night on pasture (until late fall), and fed light supplements of hay and organic grain. Milk is $6/ half-gallon, no more than 2 days old, great for all sorts of home cooking. Those interested will need to sign our raw milk agreement (which we can email to you) and then have it returned in your cooler in exchange for a milk delivery. There will be 3-4 half-gallon jars available on each distribution day.

COMING SOON
By next week and beyond, we expect a lot more diversity to start appearing in the shares. We ate the first ripe strawberry on Thursday, and expect those to be yielding well enough by distribution a week from now to get some to members (these will be a real treat). Leaf lettuce heads, spring turnips, spinach, kale, and more are also expected soon.

RECENTLY ON THE FARM
April has been a glorious month. Seasonal weather, the right amount of rain, no strong storms…it feels great. The fact that everything is far ahead due to March has created a variety of extra work such as covering things like strawberries from quite a few nighttime frosts and freezes, but overall we’re really happy with this month. It’s been extra-tiring, but as we enter May, we feel like we’re in good shape. The next few weeks will likely be a frenzy of transplanting as we begin/continue setting out tomatoes, squash, peppers, and so much more on the expectation/calculated gamble that we’re finally past serious frost danger. We’re also doing extra work to protect the strawberries from their next danger, raccoons and possums. Electrified fences similar to the one shown above center have worked well for us in the past.

We hope many members join us for the mid-May farm tour & cheese-making demonstration. There’s so much to see here and earlier attendees have seemed to enjoy the visits. The late May dinner is full but all others have slots remaining.

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