2015_may_week2

Winter 2015 – May, Week 2

What’s in the Box:

Artichokes, Mixed farm potatoes*, Leeks*
Asparagus, Fuji Apples, Baby bok choy
Spinach, Red Kale, Cranberry beans-dried*, Oregano*
Strawberries*, Peonies
*from our farm, all other produce is organic & NW grown

Dear Members,

PLEASE TAKE ONE BUNCH OF FLOWERS!

This is the final delivery of our Winter/Spring shares.  Thank you for participating with us!

If you haven’t joined our Summer CSA yet, there’s still time to sign up:  http://boistfortvalleyfarm.csaware.com/2015-summer-share-C6308.  We anticipate starting in late June.

While it’s always a little sad to finish out a delivery season, it’s also a bit of a relief.  May is the most challenging Spring month for us on the farm, as we are simultaneously organizing the harvest and delivery of produce, as well as coordinating field preparation, fertilizing, seeding, and transplant of all the greenhouse starts (and repairing the tractors and equipment…).  So after this week’s delivery, we are able to focus our attention more directly on getting all the seeds and seedlings into the field for Summer.

In today’s delivery, we have several items from our farm, including leeks, oregano, potatoes, dry beans, and flowers!  We have also included more Northwest grown organic asparagus, greens, baby bok choy, and apples.

But I forgot one thing.  The strawberries…Oh, the strawberries!

This is the earliest that we have ever harvested strawberries.  In a good season, we get approximately four weeks of harvest, but I’m not sure what to expect this season, as it’s so early and the weather is so varied.  Regardless of the duration of their presence, we are glad to have them for you this week!

Please, oh please, eat your strawberries right away.  They will not last in your fridge, or on your countertop.  We have harvested them especially for you, so that they will be lovely as long as possible, but that still isn’t very long. The variety that we grow is a classic, with amazing flavor, but as one local writer put it, you can’t ship them across the street. These odd little bursts of rain that we have enjoyed of late make them particularly soft and juicy.

Yours,

Heidi

Summer 2014 – Week 11

What’s in the Box:

Petite Share:
Lettuce, Eggplant, Green Peppers, Purplette Onions,
Artichokes, Corn, Cherry Tomatoes, Zucchini, Lemon Cucumbers,
Cucumbers & 5 Stems of Sunflowers.
Small Share:
Lettuce, Eggplant, Green Peppers, Purplette Onions,
Artichokes, Beets, Cherry Tomatoes, Corn, Lemon Cucumbers,
Cucumbers & 5 Stems of Sunflowers.
Family Share:
Green Cabbage, Eggplant, Green Peppers, Beans, Corn,
Purplette Onions, Artichokes, Beets, Cherry Tomatoes,
Cucumbers & 5 Stems of Sunflowers.
Please remember to take: 5 Stems of Sunflowers

 

Dear Friends,

This week I would like to talk about the flowers.  We include flowers almost every week, either as individual stems or bouquets.  The flowers are beautiful and sometimes quite unique, but in the midst of all the vegetables, they sometimes get overlooked.

This year at Boistfort Valley Farm, Galilee is our Florist Extraordinaire.  A longtime farmer and certified teacher by trade, Galilee says flowers have always been a part of whatever she is doing; in 2004 she helped start a CSA especially for flowers.

“Flowers are not food, but they are food for us, in a way.  They are beautiful to look at and make our homes more inviting…”  Food for the soul, I might add.

Here at the Farm, Galilee harvests the flowers each week, and arranges them to accompany the boxes.  This takes some expert decision-making on her part, careful forethought on what will be in bloom tomorrow, later in the week, and next week.  Which comes to a tricky issue:  It is very difficult to transport flowers in full bloom.

“Flowers are delicate.  When they are fully open, they get bashed-up,” Galilee says.  “While the blooms are closed, or partially closed, they are still taking up water.  Any slight damage in the handling or delivery will heal as the water is brought up through the veins in the process of the flower opening.  If the flower is damaged while already open, the water is no longer flowing throughout the flower, and therefore will not heal.”

This is partly the reason that you, the customer, often receives closed flowers along with your box.  The other reason is longevity; we want you to be able to enjoy your blooms for as long as possible, as well as experience the opening of the flower for yourself.

As for the vegetables in your boxes this week, you will find a medley of sun-loving treats.  These can be included in a variety of sauces, salsas and relishes as well as the recipes below.  The ‘Spaghetti with Burst Cherry Tomatoes’ makes for a mouth-watering dinner.  Oven-roasting the tomatoes brings out their depth and sweetness.

Enjoy your vegetables and flowers this week, as well as the sunshine!

-Emily

Summer 2014 – Week 9

What’s in the Box:

Petite Share:
Beans, Cucumbers, Red Potatoes, Zucchini,
Artichokes, Cherry Tomatoes & 1 Bouquet of Flowers.
Small shares:
Red Potatoes, Turnips, Zucchini, Cucumbers,
Green Peppers, Artichokes, Cherry Tomatoes & 1 Bouquet of Flowers.
Family shares:
Beans, Red Potatoes, Zucchini, Turnips, Cucumbers, Arugula,
Artichokes, Cauliflower, Cherry Tomatoes & 1 Bouquet of Flowers.

 

Please remember to take: 1 Bouquet of Flowers

Dear Friends,

As I write this, the morning air is already hot and the sky hazy.  The weather forecasters are predicting mid-nineties today.  This time of year is known as the ‘dog days of summer,’ and for the farmer, it presents challenges which mark the realities of our work.  The long days of high temperatures take their toll on all of the vegetables, even the heat-loving plants.  We irrigate frequently to keep things fresh and lush.  Insect populations are also at their peak this time of the season.  Needless to say, we are working especially hard to maintain the abundance and quality you see in your boxes.

And on this note, your boxes reflect the high summer varieties of produce.  The cucumbers and squashes are abundant and beautiful this time of year.  The peppers, eggplant and tomatoes are just starting to ripen.

Here at the Farm, we have tried many varieties of vegetables and often grow some of the best tasting, though less familiar ones.  One example of this is our striped zucchini, better known as Italian zucchini.  These keep a little better than the green ones which everyone is so used to seeing.  Many of us think they have a better, nuttier flavor than the green variety.  They also hold up better in cooking, which makes them a great addition to sauces, pastas and stir-fries.

Another example of this is our snap beans.  We grow 3 varieties here—yellow, green and purple.  Which ones end up in your boxes depend on the ripening time and abundance of each crop.  They all have that good ‘ol beany flavor, though each is slightly unique with  its’ own very individual qualities. We hope that your experience as members of Boistfort Valley Farms’ CSA program, will give you a chance to expand your palate and explore varieties of vegetables you may not otherwise find at the supermarket.

We are already on Week #9 of our 2014 Summer Season but there are a few shares available.  Tell your friends!  Have a great week and enjoy the warmth of summer!

-Emily