Farm News – July 29, 2010

Circle Brook Farm
Circle Brook Farm

Hi Everyone, It looks as though the tomato season has arrived. We began picking a sizeable amount of fruit last Friday, and a lot more have ripened over the weekend. It’s a week or two earlier than normal, one of the better consequences of this sunny, hot, and accelerated season. There will probably only be enough for 1 or 2 fruits per member this week, with more appreciable quantities arriving in the coming weeks.

We should have some peppers and possibly eggplant for next week. The bean plants have begun to flower again now that they have been re-hydrated. Hopefully they will produce a second picking of better quality than the first batch. The pole beans have begun climbing their trellis and will begin to flower soon, so the delicious, heirloom Rattlesnake beans should start in another 2 weeks.

Another consequence of the hot summer is that the onion crop has matured earlier than anticipated. The tops have died back on almost all varieties. Once this happens we must quickly get them out of the field to be dried or they will begin to rot. My workers spent most of Friday and all of Saturday pulling, gathering, and spreading them out in the greenhouse to dry. The volunteer work day to help with the onion harvest scheduled for August 8th is cancelled, since we could not wait until then. The crop looks excellent with lots of large bulbs of good quality that should store well.

We received some good precipitation on Sunday, which began as a sudden downpour and continued for another 2 hours as a steady light rain. It caught me in the middle of sowing a late crop of beans and soaked both me and my bags of seed before I could flee the field. I often joke that the best way to bring rain is for me to get on the tractor I use for seeding and head out to plant. I consider this to be a corollary of Murphy’s Law as it relates to farming. I was in the middle of a row and had to try to finish as the soil quickly turned to mud and stuck to the wheels of the seeder. What a mess!

The share for this week will be: Lettuce, tomatoes, summer squash, green cabbage, beets, Yukon gold potatoes, garlic, daikon radish, a small quantity of either beans or snow peas and choice of an herb. Look for dandelion greens as an extra, if you like them (most people don’t).

Enjoy! Farmer John

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