Middle Way Farm 2015 CSA - Week 9
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What's in the Share - Week 9 (odd)

For Delivery Wednesday, July 29

Standard Share
Also available for custom order unless otherwise noted
Basil - 1 pint (1.5 oz) - $2.50/pint or 2 for $4
Beets - 1.5 lb bag $3.50 for 1.5 lb bag or 3 lb for $6
Chard - 1 bunch (Standard Share Only)
Cucumber - 3 cukes - $1.50 each or 3 for $4 (Limited availability)
Garlic, Fresh - 1 head - $1/head or 3 for $2.50

Onions, White Fresh - 1 pound - $2.50/pound
New Potatoes, Red Gold - 1 quart - $3.50/quart (1.5 lb) or 2 quarts for $6

Parsley - 1 bunch - $2/bunch or 3 for $5
Tomatoes, Assorted - 1 pint (Standard Share Only)
Zucchini - 3 zukes ($1 each or 3 for $2.50)

Available for Custom Order
Cabbage - Savoy, green or red - $3 per head or 2 for $5
Carrots - $3.50 for 1.5 lb bag or 3 lb for $6

Carrots, Rainbow - $3.50/1.5 lb bag or 2 bags for $6
Collard Greens - $2.50/bunch or 2 for $4
Kale - $2.50/bunch or 2 for $4 - choose Winterbor (green curly) or Lacinato (heirloom flat-leaf)

Onions, Green - $2.50/bunch or 2 for $4
New Potatoes, Purple Viking or Yukon Gold- $3.50/quart (1.5 lb) or 2 quarts for $6
Parsley - $2/bunch
Turnips - $2.50/quart (1.5 lb) or 2 for $4

Sunflowers - 3 stem bunch - $4
Seconds Produce
Cabbage (small) - $1.50/head or 3 for $4
Available for Bulk Order 
Basil - 8 oz. - $10.00
Beets - 6 lb - $10.00
Beets, Small Pickling - 3 lb - $6.00
Carrots - 6 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
Mid-Season Reminders

Boxes! -
If you've been squirreling these away at home, now is the time to return them! Also, please take care when opening and unfolding the boxes. If done incorrectly, they will be ripped and I will have to throw them out when they are returned. If you're not sure how to unfold them, just leave them folded. Please also take care to protect your boxes from dirt, dust, pet hair and other contaminants and don't use them for household uses like recycling. Don't leave them outside except on the day when they will be picked up. Remember that whatever gets in the box is something that will get on food! We do our best to clean boxes and throw out ruined ones, but your assistance in keeping them in good condition is greatly appreciated!

Paper or plastic pints & quarts - As long as they are good condition (plastic containers can be washed) I will take them back. I reuse the paper containers and Berry Patch Farm has told me they reuse their plastic containers

Plastic bags - Please reuse these at home or throw them out. I can't reliably reuse these on the farm. 

Twist ties - If still in good condition, I can reuse these so feel free to return them. 

CSA Ordering - Custom shareholders, remember that your order has not been submitted to me unless you get a confirmation e-mail. If you do not get that e-mail, your order has not been submitted and you may be surprised to not have a share available that week!

Mistakes - If you think you might have missed something in your box, didn't get a fruit or egg share when you should have, or otherwise have a question or concern about something in your share, don't hesitate to contact me. I occasionally make mistakes or overlook something when packing shares and I want to know when I do so I can make it right!

Water Makes the Difference

A few years ago at the Practical Farmers of Iowa annual conference, I was able to attend a presentation by Paul and Sandy Arnold from New York state. This couple has been pioneers in organic vegetable growing in their region, influencing many other growers with their methods. In their presentation, they talked about how the year they added a heavy duty irrigation system to their farm they increased their gross sales by $30,000 because of increased yield! They hadn't realized how much yield and revenue they were losing because of inadequate water. 

Harvesting big, beautiful onions on Friday, it was clear to me once again how much water makes the difference in crop yield. Soil nutrients, weed control, temperature, and many other factors are important, but when a vegetable is made up primarily of water, its clear that rainfall and irrigation is absolutely key. We received over 10 inches of rain in June, which felt like too much, but when I look at the carrots, potatoes, onions, and cucumbers coming out of the field, I know that they certainly didn't share that sentiment. When we talk about soil fertility and the three major nutrients (nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium), we should talk about a fourth - H20!

With the drier weather this month (and lighter rains when they do come) we've made a lot of progress in weeding, mowing, tilling and planting. There's nothing I like more than to pull a crop out of a bed and then immediately mow down the weeds and crop stalks. Keeping the farm constantly turning over and keeping roots in the ground whenever possible is an important goal each season.The squash family crops (watermelons, winter squash, and melons) and sweet potatoes are really starting to grow and spread across the field (see photos below) and we got some timely hand weeding done this week. The cucumbers and zucchini are at their peaks, so enjoy the abundance! I've done second planting of both to hopefully extend their season deeper into the fall than usual. Tomatoes have just begun to produce and will be available for all shareholders soon. Eggplants and peppers are also just getting started and look excellent! 

We are approaching mid-season in our 22 week CSA share. Have you had too much of something? Too little of something else? Has something been just right? Wondering what will be available later in the season? Let me know! 

Place Your Custom Share Order!

What's New in the Share

Red Gold Potatoes -  These round tubers have light red skin and delicious yellow flesh. Excellent for roasting, boiling, or steaming and tossed with butter, salt, and parsley. The taste of a Yukon Gold with the qualities of a red skin potato!

White Onions - These are large, fully mature onions just harvested from the field. They are still not cured so are best stored in the fridge. Check out the cucumber recipes below, which both use white onion. 

Tomatoes -  As the season progresses, there will be number of types of tomatoes available: sungold cherry, roma or paste or sauce tomatoes, juliets (mini-romas), hybrid slicers, and heirloom slicers. Until each of these varieties starts to produce a larger quantity individually, they will be distributed as assorted pints with mixes of several different types of tomatoes together. Later in the season, you will be able to order individual types. 


Two of the best cucumber recipes I know courtesy of my former employers at Grinnell Heritage Farm. 

Cucumber Salad
3 cucumbers
 Â½ teaspoon of salt
1 teaspoon of sugar
2-3 tablespoons of white vinegar – or to taste
3 tablespoons of mayo (optional or replace with creamy yogurt)
2 small white onions - diced
Slice cucumbers and place them in medium sized bowl. Add salt, sugar, vinegar, mayo, and onion. Mix thoroughly.  Chill in refrigerator for approx. ½ hour. 
Excellent Refrigerator Pickles
1 cup sugar
1 cup vinegar
1/8 cup salt 
1/3 tsp. turmeric
1/3 tsp. celery seed and/or 1 celery stalk, sliced thinly
1/3 tsp. mustard seed
1 onion, sliced thinly 
1 tsp. fresh chopped dill
Enough cucumbers sliced thinly to fill a quart jar
Mix sugar, vinegar, and spices with a whisk (do not boil).  Stuff a clean quart jar with thinly sliced cucumbers and onion.  Pour vinegar solution over cucumbers in the jar until the jar is full.  Refrigerate for at least five days before serving.  This will keep for months in the fridge.  

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

Chinese cabbage is done for the spring, but I have nice planting going which will be ready in the fall, along with more broccoli, kohlrabi, and radishes. 

Taking a break from green beans for this week while a new planting matures. 

Cucumbers and zucchini should be abundant for the next few weeks, with tomatoes, peppers, and eggplants getting ready to explode. 

Watermelons look great in the field, with lots of fruit set! Melons, not so much, but you can't win them all. 

All the candy, white, and cippolini onions have been harvested, with just the yellow storage onions to follow. Its the best onion year I've had so far. 
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