Well that was a pretty intense week of weather we had last week. I think we ended up with over 3 inches of rain and our first sub-40 degree night. In between the chilly temps and wet weather, we had a busy and fulfilling week on the farm. But before I get to that I wanted to talk about the picture above. As I was harvesting parsley for last week’s share, this beauty was in the bunch I was about to put in the harvest bin. Seeing a praying mantis or monarch caterpillars always puts a smile on my face. Not only are they beautiful creatures but they are some of the benefits of farming in an organic system. The diversity that we see in all aspects of the farm on a daily basis truly makes this a worthwhile endeavor.
Ok, so back to the busy week on the farm. In addition to helping with the harvest, the Sustainable Farming and Food Systems students kept busy plugging away at our Fall projects. Almost all of the storage onions are cleaned and ready for distribution. I am extremely happy with our onion crop this year and look forward to adding to the mix next season. Another big project that we worked on last week was topping the tomato plants. It’s been such an incredible tomato year this season but as the temperatures begin to cool it means that there time is coming to an end, even in a greenhouse. Because the plants are still loaded with fruit we cut off their growing points, or “top” them to help ripen the remaining fruit. I’m hopeful that there will still be ripe tomatoes for the next few weeks before we have to start giving out green tomatoes.
We also had 3 different farm tours last week. On Monday we had visitors from Peru. It’s always exciting having different groups out on the farm but it’s extra special to have the opportunity to share our farm with our international friends. On Friday we had two different high school groups come out to the farm for tours. It was another chance for us to recruit future students into the degree program. They both were great groups with lots of enthusiasm.
Alright, on to this week’s CSA share. The yummy summer vegetables continue into the Fall. Tomatoes still run supreme this CSA season, as there will still be beefsteaks, heirlooms and cherries. There will also be some beautiful eggplant to choose from, as well as sweet peppers. The very last of the summer squash will be in the share tomorrow. It’s baby size but not too shabby for October. New potatoes, garlic, and cabbage return to the CSA. There will be more storage onions and I’m hopeful that there will be enough edamame for tomorrow. The new item in this week’s CSA share is Delicata squash. Delicata are one of my favorite winter squashes and are simple to prepare. I usually just roast it with some oil, maple syrup and onions. Just preheat your oven to 425 and cut your squash in half. Scoop out the seeds and then slice the squash in lengthwise strips. Slice an onion and mix with squash in a bowl with oil and maple syrups. Spread evenly out on a baking sheet and bake for about 30 minutes stirring occasionally. Enjoy!!