Week of July 3rd – CSA Newsletter

Monarch caterpillar snacking on some milkweed

Happy 4th of July!

I’m not exactly sure what happened to June but here we are. Things are rocking and rolling on the farm; transplanting, weeding and harvesting. This past week, we started planting our fall brassicas. It never ceases to amaze me that we plant our fall broccoli and cabbage before we start harvesting our spring plantings. We continued our weekly maintenance of our hoophouse and greenhouse tomatoes. The signs of summer are here because fruits are starting to form on the plants.

Heirloom tomatoes beginning to form!

We are halfway through our summer internship. If you didn’t know, students enrolled in the Sustainable Farming and Food Systems program do an on farm internship in the Fall, Spring and Summer semesters where they are involved all aspects of production on a small-scale farm. During the summer, they spend 135 hours on the TC3 Farm. In addition to farm work, we spend Mondays going on field trips to different farms and businesses in the food system. One of the goals is to get our students wheels turning and give them some ideas of where they can fit the food system after they complete their degree at Tompkins Cortland Community College. So far this summer, we’ve visited GreenTree Garden Supply, Coltivare, Hee Haw Hops Farm, Edible Acres Too and Shared Roots Farm. We’ve got lots of great trips planned for the second half of the semester.

So, strawberry season is over :(. Strawberries are such a hit and miss crop because if it’s a wet spring like this past one, the berries and plants don’t thrive.  But we are moving on to another one of my favorites, snow peas!

Snow peas!

These little babies are really tasty. In addition to snow peas this week, there is another new crop, dandelion greens. And no, we didn’t just pick the dandelions growing around the farm, we are growing a cultivated variety. If you aren’t familiar with eating dandelion greens, they are one of the most nutritious plants out there. They are packed with Vitamin A and C and several B vitamins and many minerals. A really simple recipe is to heat some oil in a pan, chop up some garlic scapes and sautee for a couple of minutes. Add some chopped dandelion and sautee until the greens are just wilted and then season with some salt. You can also just chop them and add them to a salad but some folks (myself included) find them really bitter. There will also be the last of the mondo radishes, hakurei turnips, Tokyo bekana greens, kale, kohlrabi, garlic scapes and lettuce to choose from. This week we are moving on to a lettuce mix. This is a really neat lettuce because it grows as a head but when we harvest it, it is individual leaves and makes a great mix.

In the coming weeks, there will be chard, snap peas, fresh garlic and cucumbers!

Have a great week.

 

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