Middle Way Farm 2015 CSA - Week 7
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What's in the Share

For Delivery Wednesday, July 12

Standard Share
Also available for custom order unless otherwise noted
Arugula - 6 oz. bag - $3.50/bag or 2 for $6
Cabbage, Savoy - 1 head - $3/head or 2 for $5
Carrots (no tops) - 1.5 lb bag - $3.50/bag or 2 for $6

Cucumber and/or Zucchini - 1 or 2 (Standard Share only)
Garlic, Fresh - 1 head - $1.50/head or 3 for $4
Green Beans - .75
 lb bag - $3.50/bag or 2 for $6
Green Onions - 1 bunch - $2.50/bunch
Lettuce Mix with Baby Kale - 6 oz. bag - $3.50/bag or 2 for $6
New Potatoes, Yellow & Purple - 1 quart - $3.50/quart or 2 for $6

Available for Custom Order
Baby Leeks - $2.50/bunch 
Baby Kale - $3.50/bag or 2 for $6
Cabbage, Chinese - $2.50/head  or 2 for $4

Garlic Scapes - $1.50/bunch or 3 for $4
Kale - $2/bunch or 3 for $5 - choose Winterbor (green curly) or Redbor (red curly)
Turnips - $2.50/quart (1.5 lb) or 2 for $4

Seconds* Produce
Cabbage, Chinese (Small) - $1.50/head or 3 for $4
Cabbage, Green (small) - $1.50/head or 3 for $4
Green-top Beets - $2/bunch or 3 for $5
New Potatoes, Red Skin - $2.50/quart or 2 for $4

*Seconds is a term we use on the farm to describe produce that is not marketable or is leftover from CSA packing, farmers market, etc. This is usually the produce that the crew and I eat. The only thing to be aware of is it will be older and have reduced shelf life than the "firsts" you normally receive, hence the reduced price! Offering seconds is a way to cut down on some of the waste of dealing with a lot of highly perishable produce and while giving you a cheaper price for a still perfectly good to eat product. 
Available for Bulk Order 
Beets - 6 lb - $10.00
Carrots - 6 lb - $10.00
Green Beans - 3 lb - $10.00
Turnips, Spring - 6 lb - $7.00

Berry Patch Farm Fruit Share
Blueberries - 1.5 pints

Every other week share - ODD Number Week

Sandy Hill Farm Egg Share

Every other week share - ODD Number Week

Plant Starts Available for Custom Order

All plants are $2 each or 3 for $5

Perennial Herbs 
Rosemary - tender perennial
Garden Sorrel - early season, perennial lemony green
Winter Savory - perennial version of summary savory

Flat leaf - Italian type
Dear CSA shareholders,

This is more like it...the summer heat. Every year since I started gardening and then working on farms, garlic harvest (early-mid July) has always been accompanied by high heat and humidity, without fail. I was amused that this year's garlic harvest started on one of the coolest July days I can remember experiencing in Iowa. Unfortunately, we didn't finish harvesting all the garlic last week, which means, as usual, we will be harvesting garlic in the true heat of summer. 

Harvesting and other farm tasks must proceed regardless of weather, but we will likely move to what I call a 'siesta' schedule for this week, staring early in the morning, quitting for a few hours mid-day to wait out the heat, and then returning to the farm in the late afternoon to work a few hours into the evening. We also make sure to cover up with loose fitting clothes and sunblock, drink plenty of water, and take periodic breaks from the sun. I've found that with a few precautions and a bit of perseverance, you can work outside, at least for reasonable periods of time, in almost any condition. Stay cool this week. 

Your farmer, 


Fall Planting

While the corn and soybean growers have already wrapped up their planting season weeks ago, planting season on a vegetable farm doesn't really end until the ground freezes. This week I moved the last of the fall transplants (late planting of cucumbers and zucchini, broccoli, kohlrabi, and Chinese cabbage) outside to harden off and began moving freshly dug garlic into the greenhouse to dry and cure for long-term storage. Aside from some late basil and fall head lettuce, this will be the last major planting of transplant of season. However. I continue to direct seed other crops into August and September, and then garlic and perennial onions in October, not to mention planting cover crops such as buckwheat, rye, and oats throughout the late summer and fall. 

Many people are not aware that fall is like a second spring when it comes to garden produce. Most of the crops that we associate with spring can also be sown in the summer and harvested in the fall. In addition, by planting root crops in the summer, I can harvest and store them in the fall for sale throughout the winter and into the spring. You may recall the beets that were in the Week 1 share in early June, which were harvested in October 2014! As the spring crops end in June and July, I can transition these areas of the farm into fall plantings. This increases the land efficiency and profitability of the farm and extends the season of local produce into the non-growing months. 

For all of you who garden, I highly recommend doing some summer planting for fall harvest.  Its wonderful to get spinach, radishes and broccoli in September and October, and great to be able to eat local carrots at Christmas. My experience with summer plantings has challenged some of the conventional gardening wisdom I've received about what is and isn't possible to accomplish in an Iowa growing season. Last year, I transplanted broccoli on August 1, too late by the calendar, but because of a long, mild fall, I ended up with beautiful and heavy yields of broccoli in mid-October. Time and time again, I've found that the only real measure of what is possible and what works is what I discover through my own experience and experimentation. 

Place Your Custom Share Order!

What's New in the Share

Arugula - Although arugula was available early in the summer, this is the first time I've had a planting ready in about a month and the first time arugula is appearing in the standard share. Arugula is related to radishes, turnips and other broccoli family plants. Also known as rocket, it is has a spicy, bold flavor that sometimes turns off those conditioned to milder lettuce and baby spinach. I recommend mixing with your lettuce mix and/or coating with a creamy dressing such as goddess dressing and adding in a flavorful cheese like feta or blue cheese. Arugula can also be cooked like spinach. 

Cucumber & Zucchini -  These crops are just starting to produce and will be much more abundant in the next few weeks. Keep cucumbers in a sealed plastic bag in the fridge and use within a week. Zucchini can be kept out on the counter and used within a few days or refrigerated and used within a week. Smaller, thinner skinned, more tender zucchini dry out and spoil more quickly (particularly at room temperature) than larger, thicker skinned zucchini, so they are best used immediately for peak flavor and quality, or refrigerated for a short period of time. 

Fresh Garlic - You may be wondering what's the difference between fresh garlic and what you normally buy. After harvesting, garlic is typically cured or dried for several weeks. During that time, the layers of wrappers around the garlic cloves become dry and papery and the garlic is then able to be stored at room temperature for several months at least without spoiling. When its fresh, the garlic wrappers are still 'wet'. Leave it out on the counter and DO NOT put it in a plastic bag or other sealed container (it WILL mold). Otherwise, treat it as you would cured garlic. Since its still fresh, it peals very easily, is easy to work with, and has a wonderful strong fragrance.  


Arugula and Carrot Salad with Walnuts and Cheese
Yields 4-6 servings


4 cups arugula
2 cups grated carrots
2 tblsp crushed walnuts
¼ cup grated parmesan/blue cheese
1 tblsp finely chopped tarragon (optional)
1 tblsp fresh lemon juice
1 tblsp red or white wine vinegar
1 tsp balsamic vinegar
1 tsp Dijon mustard
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil

1. Combine salad ingredients in a large bowl
2. Combine lemon juice, vinegars and mustard. Whisk, and then add oil. Salt to taste.
3. Shortly before serving, toss the dressing into the salad. Enjoy!

What's on the Horizon...What's on the Way Out

Despite some fungal problems during a cold and rainy June, the tomatoes are for the most part recovering and look good. Cherry tomatoes should be coming in by the end of the month. Peppers and eggplants also look good. 

Cucumbers and zucchini are just beginning to produce fruit but so far look about as good as I can hope for this time of year. Pest pressure seems to have been a bit lower than usual so far and they have had plenty of water and good weed control. 

There are some very nice, large white and candy onions in the field that should be showing up in shares soon. 
I started out in 2009 growing 1 bulb of Persian Star in my backyard that I bought at the Seed Savers Exchange gift shop. Made it through aster's yellow disease in 2012 that destroyed many growers' whole garlic crop. Harvested approximately 350 bulbs this year.
My housemate Lydia had her 8th birthday party this weekend. For the past seven years in a row, we've prepared an all-local meal for her party, which this year included Chinese cabbage salad, lettuce mix, potato salad, beet burgers, and a 'green' pasta with kale, basil, and garlic scape pesto. 
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