Saturday, October 20, 2018

CSA Newsletter for Week 19

Farm Update

Fred was able to save a ton of time and conserve a lot of 
cover crop seed with our new(ish) grain drill.  This week was
the first time he used it, and he's really excited about it!
Hi everyone!  Things are really starting to wind down at the farm, especially with that hard freeze we had on Wednesday night.  That freeze actually did quite a bit of damage to our leafy veggies like lettuce, spinach, and arugula, but we still have plenty of fall goodies to take their place in the shares.  This week at the farm, we tilled under some old crops that are no longer producing so we could prepare that ground for next year and seeded some winter rye as a cover crop.  We also planted one of the coldframes with spinach for overwintering (basically it just hangs out there, staying really small until the days get warmer and there are enough sunlight hours for it to start growing again), and seeded some mache in the greenhouse.  As has been true for the last several weeks, most of our time at the farm has been spent harvesting, and with the horrible weather, that has been quite a task.  Huge props to Fred, Carson, Ben, and Danny for their dedication and ability to endure the near freezing temps and biting wind.  For them, the end of harvest can't come soon enough, but we've got two more weeks to go.  And just in case you missed the announcement last week, we're starting sign-ups for next year's CSA, so just let me know if you want to sign up!  See you all at the drop-offs this week! :-)

What to Expect in This Week's Share

If you are picking up at one of our traditional style drop-offs (Alma, Mt. Pleasant, or Midland), here’s what the options will be at the different stations.  If you have a half share, you’ll choose one item at each station, and if you have a full share, you choose two items at each station.

  • Sweet potatoes
    Until recently, this field contained the remains of the sweet
    potato vines, but now it has been tilled under in preparation
    for next year.
  • Apples
  • Carrots
  • Surprise veggie
  • Kale or a bag of onions
  • Leeks or radishes
  • Pepper, celery root, or onion

If you have a prepacked share (Midland hospital, St. Johns, Lansing, Okemos, or home delivery), here are your options.  If you have a half share, you’ll choose either share A or share B, and if you have a full share, you can choose two of them.

Share A:                               Share B:
Beets                                     Gold potatoes
Carrots                                  Carrots
Sweet potatoes                      Sweet potatoes
Apples                                  Apples
Bag of onions                       Kale
Radishes                               Leeks
Pepper                                  Celery root


So I bet some of you are wondering, "What in the world is celery root?"  While it's not a thing we usually see in stores (mostly because it looks really weird), it used to be a winter staple for people in cold-weather climates like ours in the days before refrigeration and grocery stores.  People used to store celery root (also called celeriac) in the root cellar with their potatoes and beets to get them through the winter.  As the name implies, it actually is related to celery (over the years, celeriac was bred for the root, whereas traditional celery was bred for the stem and leaves, but it was originally the same plant), and it has a delicious and bright celery flavor.  So before you just throw the gnarly-looking ball shaped thing in the bottom of your fridge, here are Ten (Yes, 10) Things to do with Celery Root!  But if you do forget about it in the bottom of your fridge for three months, it will still be in great shape, because celery root lasts forever! :-)

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