Week 17

Okra produces one of the prettiest flowers on the farm.

A truly strange plant, okra produces one of the prettiest flowers on the farm.

Hi all, Alli here.

I hope you all have been enjoying this wonderful fall weather!  While the days are still warm and lovely, there is a definite chill in the air during the nights and mornings.  We’ve been throwing on sweatshirts (and even hats!) for the dewy early morning harvests at the farm.  We’re seeing the growth of our summer plants slow down more and more each week (and the weeds, too…yay!).  We can even wait a bit longer between each squash and okra harvest, which is actually a bit of a relief after the constant attention they required throughout the summer.  With our final plantings finished, we’re able to focus on clearing out beds and getting them ready to rest for the winter.  We even harvested all of our potato beds today!

We weeded all of our potato beds recently, and Jay was ready to help us harvest them today (with an awesome implement for the tractor that makes it so fast and easy!).  Potatoes are one of the first things we plant in the spring, so it's great to get them out of the ground and into the root cellar, where they'll hang out until it's time for them to go in your shares.  Yum!
We weeded all of our potato beds recently, and Jay was ready to help us harvest them today (with an awesome implement for the tractor that makes it so fast and easy!). Potatoes are one of the first things we plant in the spring, so it’s great to get hundreds of pounds of them out of the ground and into the root cellar, where they’ll hang out until it’s time for them to go in your shares. Yum!
While there are still many plants growing out there, it is so interesting to see the farm begin its slow transition back to the blank slate it was in the spring.  And while the shrinking daylight hours are a bit sad and a reminder that winter is on its way again, it’s actually sort of nice to be forced to head home a bit earlier these days—gives us more of a chance to cook up real dinners with all these tasty veggies!

They've certainly slowed down a lot, but there's still a colorful mix of tomatoes out there!  We intentionally harvested some more slightly underripe ones, so if you get any of these, let them ripen up on your counter for a few days to extend your tomato eating throughout the week!
They’ve certainly slowed down a lot, but there’s still a colorful mix of tomatoes out there! We intentionally harvested some more slightly underripe ones, so if you get any of these, let them ripen up on your counter for a few days to extend your tomato eating throughout the week!
Speaking of tasty dinners, we’ve been whipping up some great stuff the past few days.  We are so lucky to have a great volunteer, Stefanie, staying with us this week (who is using a week of her vacation days to get away from her job in the city and help us out…how lucky are we?!), and we want to make sure she experiences farm fresh food at its best.  I’ve mentioned in the past what a difference an extra person can make on the farm, and this is no exception.  Not only is she super excited to learn about farming, try new vegetables, and get her hands in the soil, but she is one heck of a weeding machine!  As is often the case when new people come to Four Winds, she thinks it’s a beautiful place, so quite a few of the pictures you’ll see this week are hers.  Thanks, Stefanie!

Stefanie taking a quick stretch break from all the weeding.
That’s Stefanie in the distance, taking a quick stretch break from all the weeding.

And here are some items that you’ll be receiving this week:

Lettuce
Spinach/Yukina Savoy
Arugula
Kale/Chard
Leeks
Sweet and Hot Peppers
Garlic
Tomatoes
Cherry Tomatoes/Tomatillos
Okra/Shishito Peppers
Carrots

Cilantro/Dill

We are so happy to have cilantro back!  Obviously, it makes a great addition to any salsa, but it can actually be used to brighten up almost any dish.  Just in case you’re having trouble picturing that, here’s a giant list of ideas:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/01/31/cilantro-recipes_n_1577853.html

I had a few people tell me last week that they had quite a supply of carrots and leeks building up in their fridges, so here is the perfect soup to solve that problem!  Of course, there are tons of variations on this, so feel free to discover a similar recipe that suits you.  Carrots and leeks will be a wonderful combination, whether you turn them into soup or not!

http://www.aspicyperspective.com/carrot-soup-recipe/

More carrots, ready to be pulled for you.
More carrots, ready to be pulled for you!

Enjoy, and have a great week!

Turkeys hanging out, fighting over (or maybe sharing?) some tasty apples.

Turkeys hanging out and fighting over (or, um, sharing) some tasty apples.

Looking out over some of the fields.

Looking out over some of the fields.

Our little blue cart, waiting to be filled up with weeds.

Our little blue cart, just waiting to be filled up with weeds.

And just one more of view of some of our fields, and some giant turnip greens next to some freshly cleared beds.  Ahhh, fall!

And just one more of view of some of our fields, and some giant turnip greens next to some freshly cleared beds. Ahhh, fall!

 

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