2021 Main Season Week 17D

Tomatoes are hanging on! This week we're beginning to harvest from our second planting of tomatoes. Night temperatures haven't been favorable for quick ripening, but they're coming in a little more comfortably this week (We think! The forecast keeps changing!). This week everyone will receive tomatoes in your share, though you'll see more and more fall crops mixed in now. Tomatoes, peppers, eggplant, cucumbers - all of our summer hits continue to come slowly and steadily until late October, or whenever we get a killing frost. We're actually going to cover this planting of tomatoes with Reemay cloth to insulate it a bit more and keep the fruit yields high.


"Second" tomatoes are a bit more abundant now that our first planting is dying off, and we'll be offering you the opportunity to grab an extra free one at pickup this week if you'd like. We posted this photo to social media because somehow it seems a more beautiful work of art than a tray full of perfect tomatoes.




This week you're all receiving Brussels sprout tops in your share. These cabbage-y greens are from the top of the Brussels sprout plant. Remember garlic scapes back in June? Brussels sprout tops are a similar crop: harvest them from the top of the plant to refocus the plant's energy. Instead of creating big, leafy tops, the plant will ensure that the Brussels sprouts on the stalk grow larger. Brussels sprouts will be here later this fall, but the tops can be eaten like collard greens. You'll need the Library of Resources for this; the majority of people aren't eating these, unless they have a relationship with their local farmer. We absolutely can't wait to see what you cook up with these this week, and can't wait to reshare your photos on our social media. Let's make these go viral and show everyone what it's like to eat creatively in this subscription program!


We're just about done seeding and planting for the year. Our cutoff date is usually September 15th, but on September 17th we made our last raised bed of the season. Tyler followed behind Randy and seeded arugula, mustard greens, broccoli rabe, and Tokyo bekana. All of these crops have an approximately 40 day to harvest timeline. Those timelines are under perfect growing conditions, so it will most likely be later with cooler temperatures.



We've also been working on planting heads of lettuce into hanging pots in our greenhouse, so that will continue until all pots are filled. This is a super time-consuming process, including taking the pots down from the overhead racks, pulling out any dead plants, topping them off with fresh soil, planting the seedling, and hanging the pots back up. We also repeat this process when we harvest the lettuce, but it's all worth it because it helps to extend our growing season to keep plants growing in the warmth of the greenhouse for as long as possible.


The final crop we plant during the season is garlic, though technically it's the first thing we plant for next year's season. Did you know that you plant garlic cloves to get garlic heads? Here, Randy and Laina are setting aside a certain amount of pounds of each variety of garlic that we harvested (along with our members who came to the Great Garlic Harvest!) Randy saves about 90 lbs. of garlic heads before we sell the rest. Eventually we'll separate it into each individual clove and plant them in the ground in November.



We got a restock on shirts and hats in the store! If you've been looking for a certain size, check the shelf. We've got short sleeve crew necks, v-necks, caps, and black cold weather beanies. If you're a delivery member hoping to sport one, send us an email and we can set you up with an invoice and pack it with your share. Tees and hats are all $20 each.


We started a new partnership with Shelton Public Schools! They'll be sourcing our produce in the different schools on a rotating basis. Last week they picked up their first order and they shot a promotional video of Chef Rich cooking up 4 different recipes with fresh produce here on the farm. We're excited about the opportunity to teach children all about the importance of eating healthy, farm fresh food grown right in town.


Member Kathie was the recipient of the 31 lb. watermelon last week! Ronnie and John D. won the massive 36 pounder, and Liz N. claimed the 25 lb. melon. Thanks for playing, everybody, and we look forward to the next giveaway, happening next week!


Next Saturday, September 25th, we're having a pick-your-own green/wax bean event just from 10-11 a.m. You'll come any time during that period (but no later than 10:30) and we'll give you a produce bag to fill up. You can eat your beans fresh or freeze them for the winter. It shouldn't take longer than 30 minutes. You can mix and match types to fill your bag. The best part? This event will give you a unique chance to spend time up at our scenic Booth Hill location.


Simply reply to this email if you'd like to come. Just a couple of terms: this event will be a pick at your own risk event. Limit one bag per family (not attendee), open to subscription members only, and if you can't attend, we're sorry, but we can't pick a bag for you. Our goal is to have this be a fun gathering for our community of members.




In the weeks to come, we'll be releasing more information about our fall happenings: our Thanksgiving Centerpiece Workshop, plus pre-orders for Shaggy Coos Farm Thanksgiving turkeys.

Last week we launched details for our 2022 Subscription Program. Our Early Registration period runs from Sunday, October 3, 2021 at 7 a.m. through Sunday, October 17th. Click here to read the first email of the series, which outlines the 3 perks you get for enrolling early and some FAQs about what will be changing and what will be staying the same for next year.


This Tuesday we'll be sending out another email in this series that outlines some tips to think about ahead of enrollment day. For example, "What's the difference between the Extended and Main Season programs?" and some other FAQs.


In Your Share (In approximate order from shortest to longest shelf life)

Small:

  • 1 head of lettuce

  • 1 bunch of radishes

  • 1 bunch of Brussels sprout tops

  • 1/2 lb. of tomatoes

  • 1 head of cabbage

  • 1 lb. of potatoes

  • 1 onion

Large:

  • 1 head of lettuce

  • 1 bunch of radishes

  • 1 bunch of Brussels sprout tops

  • 1 lb. of tomatoes

  • 1 pint of lunchbox peppers

  • 1 head of cabbage

  • 2 lbs. of potatoes

  • 2 onions

Caring For Your Share:

  • Shake out any excess water in the head of lettuce, then store in a plastic bag in the fridge. Wash and spin out when ready to use.

  • Store lunchbox peppers in a plastic bag in the crisper drawer of your fridge. Set the crisper drawer to low humidity to allow some of the ethylene gas that results from decomposition to escape. Ethylene gas will cause the peppers to rot sooner.

  • Keep tomatoes out on the counter and out of direct sunlight, where they will get plenty of air flow. Do not put them in the fridge; it will dry out the tomatoes and change their consistency. Tomatoes continue to ripen after harvested, so use within a few days. To ripen a tomato quickly, put it in a paper bag in a dark place, like a cabinet.

  • Store Brussels sprout tops in a plastic bag in the crisper drawer of the fridge. Wash when ready to use.

  • Remove the greens from the radishes and store them in separate plastic bags. Wash and eat the greens within a few days; the roots will keep for a couple of weeks if stored properly.

  • Store potatoes in a mesh bag in a cool, dark place such as a cabinet or pantry, and ensure that they get plenty of air flow. Do not wash until ready to use, but wipe away dense soil, if any. Keep away from onions.