Rain, Rain, go away…We are done with rain here at the farm -or more accurately, the humidity. There actually hasn’t been too much rain in the past week (less than 2 inches by our gauge) there just hasn’t been enough sun and enough wind in between to dry off the leaves of the plants. Nothing is worse for most of the crops we grow here than constant moisture.
A vegetable farm is like a exotic plant collection. We have species native to central India (eggplant), the mountains of Peru (potatoes), the meditereanean (arugula, cabbage, kale) and Africa (watermelon). Each crop we grow evolved in a drastically different environment from the majority of the other crops around it. Because of this most of our work as farmers involves trying to level the playing field or adapt what we expect from our Maine climate to make this short season work for all of these well travelled species. While these crops hail from many environments, very few are products of the rain forest -which is what we have been living in the past week! The forecast look better for the coming days and hopefully the wind will blow this tropical stuff out and get us back to the cold, dry summer we have come to expect around here.
The Upic Field Opens this Week with Peas…here’s how it works:
This is the official opening week of our Upic field with snow and snap peas as well as a few flowers. We are asking that you limit your pea picking to 1 pint this week to ensure that everyone can enjoy this crop. We will have pint boxes in the field. If you are new to the CSA and the upic field here’s how it works…
Here’s the skinny on how Upic works. We prepare, plant, and weed this ½ acres plot just for you, the members of the farm. Growing there you will find green beans, herbs, flowers, and most notably this week, peas. These are crops that are particularly rewarding to harvest and can add a lot of value to your share as they often are great accompaniments to the “field crops” we harvest and wash for you each week.
The important thing to understand about this field is that it belongs to everyone who has a share in the farm. There are 275 shares this year and we try very hard to plan each planting so that everyone will be able to enjoy every crop. The idea is that all of these crops are compliments to the field crops and not necessarily staples in and of themselves. While we would love to be able to plant enough Upic basil for everyone to make pesto for the winter or sow enough beans to share with your neighbors, it’s just not possible in the space we have to work with. Those of you that split shares, we ask that you be particularly aware of your picking quantities.
With the exception of these first couple weeks we will not suggest amounts for you to take from the upic field. The idea is that we all take our share and consciously leave behind enough for everyone else. The upic field has always been our grand experiment in community spirit and in thirteen years of CSA growing all over the Northeast we have never been disappointed.
Carrots on the Menu
We have our first carrots of the season this week. Sweet and crisp this first variety is my favorite of the season. The crew harvested about 450 lbs in the rain yesterday, deepening our already close relationship to mud.
Cabbage is New England Soulfood
Try this classic cole slaw recipe. I’ts from Los Angeles’ famous pantry diner and is what all other american slaw recipes aspire to…You can use any cabbage (savoy, green, chinese) and it never hurts to shred in a few carrots…
What’s in Upic?
What’s in the Share this Week?