Welcome to Kate’s first blog for 2014.
It’s certainly been a doozy of a winter, eh? However, I think spring may finally be on its way. I know there will probably be some more snow and cool weather, but we are definitely through the worst of what this winter season has had to offer … I hope!
The greenhouse is starting to fill up with seedlings of onions, broccoli, cauliflower, and cabbage. My hope is to get them transplanted into the gardens in late April or early May. It feels so good to finally be able to get my hands back in the dirt again. I was beginning to feel a little ungrounded and depressed! If the sun comes out, the greenhouse can get up to over 100 degrees! I forgot what that kind of warmth felt like.
I went back and forth on whether or not I should raise the price of the CSA share this year, and decided that I would not. If I charged what it really cost to raise a full share, my only subscribers would be the privileged few with unlimited income. I still have not figured out how to make money farming, but I continue to trust that at some point it will come about as our community becomes more aware of the importance of supporting local food producers, not only as a benefit for the local economy but for a vital and healthy food system. In the future, I hope to diversify into other areas of food production. In order to do that, I will have to attract like-minded individuals who would like to help with the gardens, marketing, and production. I am depending on my past subscribers to continue to be members again this year, and will also be increasing the number of subscriptions, so if you know of anyone who might be interested in joining, please send them to my website for information.
To make it easier to register and pay for your subscription, you can now register for the CSA on the website. If you prefer to send in your registration via mail, you can download the registration form.
Barbara has agreed to return and work for the same amount as I paid her last year and both of us hope that we will be able to increase the production of the gardens in order to provide additional wholesale produce for the local food stores and restaurants. We both love gardening and feel that the heat of the sun and the physical exercise keep our bodies limber and our spirits young! The vital, healthy food we are able to eat from the gardens are true gifts as well.
The responses from the questionnaire I sent out a month ago indicated there was some interest in purchasing additional produce for canning baskets. You will not have to have to pay for them at this time, but I will need to know what types of produce you would like to prepare so that I can start the additional transplants insuring that I have the enough produce for the basket orders.
All baskets include the vegetables and a recipe (most recipes will make at least 2 quarts to 6 pints). You add dried seasonings, (I will provide fresh herbs, if called for), salt, vinegar, and your own canning jars (or, if freezing, zip lock bags or other freezer containers).
Herb Pesto – $20 Includes a selection of the freshest herbs to make different flavored pesto. This would include basils, parsley, dill, mint and tarragon along with recipes and recommendations for freezing. It will not include the olive oil, nuts or cheese.
Pasta Sauce – $40 Includes everything you need to make a meatless pasta sauce. Will not include mushrooms. Recipe included. Appropriate for either canning or freezing. Will make around 3-4 quarts.
Salsa – $50 Includes everything you need to make a nicely flavored thick salsa to can. My all-time favorite recipe included. Should make around 7 pints.
Cucumber Pickles – $40 Includes all of the veggies needed to make either a sweet or dill cumber pickle. Includes recipes for canning or fresh refrigerator preparations. Will make around around 7 pints or 3 quarts.
Since this is first notice is going out a little late, I will be extending the registration and deposit deadline until April 15th, with full payment due on May 15th. As I am planning to increase my subscriptions in the CSA this year, it is important that you register as soon as possible so that I know how many openings are left for new subscribers. I appreciate you all so much and look forward to seeing you here at my gardens in June. Call or email me if you have questions.