If there was one word to describe this season, “almost” would be it. All season long I’ve felt like we are almost over the hump. The greenhouse was almost ready in time, but it wasn’t so everything got delayed. The field was almost ready to be planted in early April…and then it rained cats and dogs for 10 straight days so we didn’t get back in until May, which further delayed everything. The deer fence was almost ready when the heat forced me to remove the covers over everything. The irrigation was almost set up in time for the first dry stretch we had. Although the plants have been heroic in trying to catch up from all the delays, summer abundance hasn’t quite come to the hill yet. We had the first modest pick of rainbow carrots, beets, bell peppers, eggplant, and cherry tomatoes for the CSA on Saturday, and they are available in limited quantities this week on the website. The second planting of cucumber and squash/zucchini is almost ready as well, so they are still limited. I tried a watermelon and it was almost ready. Sorry I’ll stop now!
As frustrating as being almost there is, the garden looks great. The variety is impressive, while the quantities not so much. One thing we have nailed this year is lettuce, which is making up for last season’s constant shortages with more lettuce than I know what to do with this year. And it’s been REALLY good if I do say so myself…not easy to do in the middle of the summer! Our leek, onion, and herb game is going strong as well, specifically some incredible basil and cilantro. We picked 60 bunches of basil for the CSA and didn’t even make a dent in it. If you like to stock up on pesto for the winter like we do, now is the time because I spotted the first signs of basil downy mildew. A relatively new (to the Northeast) disease , it pretty quickly wipes out the entire basil crop. The discount won’t show up on the website because I’m a farmer not a web designer, but buy 2 and get 1 free. Buy 4 and get 2 free. Buy 6 and get 3 free. You get the idea, no limits – stock up! Just make sure to confirm the right quantities are in your cart before checkout – there is a glitch (again farmer not web designer) that won’t allow you to add multiple of some veggies to your cart, but you can increase the quantities if you click on View Cart before checkout.
Also this week only, April is back making flower bunches. The first sunflowers started to open up and the marigold are popping like crazy. She always mixes in some beautiful wild flowers and intoxicating basil. They’re quite a treat, make sure to add one to your order!
Veggie Ordering and Pickup Procedures: Put your veggie orders in online before 8pm Sunday. The website is a little buggy so if you don’t see a wide variety of items or you see items out of stock, try refreshing your browser. Also confirm on checkout that you have the correct number of each item in your cart. The two pickup windows are working well so far, so we’ll keep it going. Choose your pickup window while checking out online: 1-2pm and 4-6pm Monday on the farm at 64 Potter Hill Rd in Grafton. Pickups are in the long white garage on the left across from the beat up tan and red barn at the crest of the hill.