2021 Main Season Week 7D

It came as a huge shock to us last week when we found out that we were even nominated, and are now in the final running, to win Connecticut Magazine's Best Farm Stand award!

Our crew had fun making this silly TikTok video to garner some hype and votes.


Voting is open until July 31st, and you can vote once with a valid email address. Please share with friends and family who'd also love to vote! Click this link to take you to the polls.

Amidst all of the fun we have on the farm, the reality of this growing season is that it's been challenging. This has honestly been one of the hardest seasons yet. The spring started out pleasantly sunny, but the inconsistencies in water and sun have been anything but balanced. We're getting too much sun, not enough sun, too much rain, not enough rain, plants are getting sun scald, and we're seeing more pest pressure than ever due to a mild winter.


Not only is the weather causing us difficulty in growing, but it also makes field work and markets harder, too. The crew can't go out when it's storming, and we're finding ourselves bringing truck loads of produce that we spent hours harvesting back from markets that were hindered by the rain.


Certainly nothing is meant to be a complaint, as we are so appreciative of you especially, who stand behind your farmer in a Community Supported Agriculture program. To know that you're all there with positive words and engagement in this program means the world to us.


The timeline of harvesting hasn't really been affected by the weather. Most, if not all, items are still on schedule. We are experiencing some crop loss, but aren't anticipating anything major.

On one of the sunny days last week, I snapped some photos to show you some progress. Eggplant, husk cherries, tomatillos, bell peppers, gutter planters full of scallions, and our beautiful echinacea, all look healthy.

Our greenhouse tomatoes started coming in beautifully last week, too. We're getting about a tray a day, which doesn't amount to much, but the quality has impressed us. Tomatoes historically come in from the field during week 10, so we are getting close!

Click to take a video walk through the peppers. Peppers are about a few weeks off, and when I turn the camera view behind me, you can see a sea of carrot tops, where your carrots were harvested from this week.

Last week, when we were able to work in the fields, it was a big week for turning over crops and replacing them with new ones. Typically we harvest in the mornings and then plant, weed, and do farm maintenance in the afternoons. Nick and Tyler pulled out the old pea crop stakes to be used for tomato stakes. They also planted Brussels sprouts for the fall in an old greens block.

Just a reminder that we're open from 10:30 to 6 on weekdays and 9 to 4 on Saturdays. We know that 10:30 is kind of a strange time, but we've figured out that this works best for our family, farm, staff, work flow, and business. We don't want to disappoint you, but we can't promise to be available before then.

1,400 of our 1,700 lbs. of plum tomatoes are already spoken for! We're just estimating our yield and availability this year based on last year's numbers. This means we've only got about 12 more bulk boxes available before plum tomatoes would be sold out.


If you'd like to get on the list to receive bulk boxes of veggies so you can pickle, can, and preserve this summer, you can order yours by following this link: 2021 Bulk Box Waiting List


The following bulk boxes will be available this season:

Cucumbers: 25 lb. boxes for $25 (Makes 12-13 quarts)

Plum tomatoes: 25 lb. boxes for $30 (Makes 8-9 quarts)

Imperfect Peppers for Freezing (some blemishes to cut around, in assorted colors): 25 lb. boxes for $30 (Makes 8-9 quart bags)

Cherry Peppers: 10 lbs. for $30 (Makes about 10 pints)


Here are a few shots of our picklers' finished products!

CT has a new law as of July 1, 2021 that bans all single-use plastic bags. We are no longer legally allowed to provide a courtesy bag at pickup, so please remember to bring a reusable bag to pick up your veggies. Thanks so much for supporting us in this!

If you receive a delivery, please remember to leave us last week's KIND bag so that we can pack your next share into it. If we don't receive the bag back, we'll leave the items loose in your cooler next week. We SO appreciate your remembering to leave a bag and your cooler with ice during these very hot summer days!


We feel happy about the new law and committed to our decision as a farm to move in this direction away from plastic as much as possible.

Remember that our "Week of Choice" is happening from August 1st to August 7th. If you'd like to waive your pre-packed box and instead receive a voucher to spend on items of your choice in the store, you must use this form to opt in.


https://forms.gle/w9pFyEA11i92SbFT6


If you wish to continue to receive a traditional pre-packed box that week, that is completely fine with us! If we haven't received a response as of this week, Jill, Dawn, and I will begin to ask for confirmation that that means you would like to receive a pre-packed box. The deadline to opt for the voucher will be July 24, 2021.

We're EXTENDING OUR DEADLINE as we look for LGF's Greatest Griller of 2021! This weather has been so awful for grilling that we think we need more opportunities to join in on the fun. The deadline will now be Sunday, July 18th, and our crew will pick a winner on Monday, July 19th. Here are the criteria to enter:

  • You MUST grill a veggie! Since we are a veggie farm, we're looking to share some inspiration with dishes that our community can make.

  • Tag us with a photo submission of your grilled creation (Our Instagram and Facebook handles are @laurelglenfarmllc). OR email the photo to us at laurelglenfarm@gmail.com (We'll reshare it with your first name on our account.)

  • Simply provide us with a short caption of what it is. You are absolutely welcome to explain it if you'd like, but we just need to be able to label it on our social media. No recipe needed!

Here are our submissions to date. Who will win the fun, custom prize?!

One of the perks of this weather? Beautiful rainbows. What a sight!

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

Small:

  • 1 bunch of parsley

  • 1 bunch of pea tendrils

  • 1 bunch of radishes

  • 1 bunch of carrots

  • 1/2 lb. bag of beans

  • 1 lb. of cucumbers

  • 1 lb. of zucchini

Large:

  • 1 bunch of parsley

  • 1 bunch of pea tendrils

  • 1 bunch of radishes

  • 1 bunch of carrots

  • 1 lb. bag of beans

  • 1 head of cabbage

  • 1 onion

  • 1 lb. of cucumbers

  • 1 lb. of zucchini

Caring For Your Share:

  • The information for onions in the Library of Resources is for dried onions. Store your fresh onions in the refrigerator. You can place a plastic bag over the greens to keep them fresh, and you can use those like scallions!

  • Put parsley in a glass of water in the fridge, like a bouquet. Or, wrap it in a damp paper towel and put it in a plastic bag in the fridge and use within the week.

  • Store pea tendrils in a plastic bag in the crisper drawer of your fridge and use them within a few days.

  • Store beans in a plastic bag in the fridge (you may need to change out the bag if the beans are damp inside. Wash and blot dry when ready to use.

  • Remove greens from the carrots and radishes and store them in separate plastic bags in the fridge. Use greens within the week; roots will last a few weeks. Wash when ready to use.

  • Store cucumbers and zucchini in the crisper drawer in the refrigerator.

  • Leave the outer leaves on and store the head of cabbage in the fridge. The outer leaves will keep moisture in the head and prevent it from drying out.


LGF Cooking Club (The Library of Resources is filled with TONS of ideas about all of these veggies, including the herbs summer savory and shiso!)

Biweekly Catch-Up:

Happy 4th of July! It's hard to believe it's already July, and yet here we are, alternating between sweatshirts and high-powered A/C from one weekend to the next. This weekend's rain was completely necessary, but also a little nerve-racking to get that much at once. The bean plants were knocked over, but they're still beginning to yield enough for shares this week.

Our big project last week, and continuing into this week, is to weed the beets by hand. Randy's been dying to turn on the sprinklers in this patch, but didn't want the weeds to be watered also. First we attempt to remove the weeds, then we'll focus on watering. We grow traditional red, Chioggia, and golden beets.


There are twenty 300-foot long rows. To give you a little context, here's a view of how far this beet field goes. It is literally a weeks-long project. When we weren't harvesting this past week, we were weeding. We're almost done, though!


Crew member Ethan had the brilliant idea to pop up some tents over the patch we were weeding, and it gave us some much-needed respite from the sun. This crew deserves a ton of credit for their hard work during last week's heat wave!

This week we're all trying a potentially new herb. You'll either receive shiso or savory in your share. There is plenty of information about both in the Library of Resources. Share your creations in our Facebook group so our other members can see what's worth trying!


This is shiso.


This is savory.

If you have any large boxes at home, we're seeking them throughout the remainder of the season. Bring them by on your next visit, and we'll be happy to use them for donations, bulk box orders, and wholesaling. Thanks so much!

Speaking of bulk boxes, we're already working our way through our waiting list for pickling cucumbers! The heat made all of the squash, zucchini, and cucumbers flourish over the week. We planned out last week's box thinking we'd just barely get by with enough cucumbers to give you 1/2 lb. each, and we could have given so much more!


If you'd like to get on the list to receive bulk boxes of veggies so you can pickle, can, and preserve this summer, you can order yours by following this link: 2021 Bulk Box Waiting List


The following bulk boxes will be available this season:

Cucumbers: 25 lb. boxes for $25 (Makes 12-13 quarts)

Plum tomatoes: 25 lb. boxes for $30 (Makes 8-9 quarts)

Imperfect Peppers for Freezing (some blemishes to cut around, in assorted colors): 25 lb. boxes for $30 (Makes 8-9 quart bags)

Cherry Peppers: 10 lbs. for $30 (Makes about 10 pints)

CT has a new law as of July 1, 2021 that bans all single-use plastic bags. We are no longer legally allowed to provide a courtesy bag at pickup, so we encourage you to bring a reusable bag to pick up your veggies. Thanks so much for supporting us in this! (This is Randy's mom, Dawn, who's in the store on Saturdays. She's modeling the new reusable bags given to us by Randy's cousin-in-law Mike, who works for KIND snacks [they make the KIND bars!])


If you receive a delivery, you'll receive your share in one of these bags, and your name will be labeled on the bag. The following week you'll get another bag, and you'll leave us the bag from the previous week to pack into. If we don't receive the previous bag back, we'll leave the veggies loose in your cooler.


We SO appreciate your remembering to leave a bag and your cooler with ice during these very hot summer days! We feel happy about the new law and committed to our decision as a farm to move in this direction away from plastic as much as possible.

Exciting news! Some of our greenhouse tomatoes are starting to turn red!

We have no idea if and when we'll have enough of these to cover shares, but we're hoping they'll at least be available in the store soon. Our secret in helping them to ripen? Water LESS. Believe it or not, putting stress on the plant is what causes the tomatoes to ripen. Field tomatoes typically arrive here around the last week of July or early August.

This week you'll find the typically veggie swap area filled with extras for our members! Feel free to take an additional item as a thank you! We love this program and we appreciate you all and your commitment to us so much.

Remember that our "Week of Choice" is happening from August 1st to August 7th. If you'd like to waive your pre-packed box and instead receive a voucher to spend on items of your choice in the store, you must use this form to opt in.


https://forms.gle/w9pFyEA11i92SbFT6


If you wish to continue to receive a traditional pre-packed box that week, that is completely fine with us! In this week's share, you'll find a small piece of paper that outlines the information a bit more. You can use the form to opt in, but we'll also document your response at pickup the following week, so you have some time to think it over. The deadline to opt for the voucher will be July 24, 2021.

Last but certainly not least, we're looking for LGF's Greatest Griller of 2021! Enter our grilling contest with a simple photo submission from now until July 11th. Our crew will pick a winner to receive a special prize on July 12th. Here are the criteria to enter:

  • You MUST grill a veggie! Since we are a veggie farm, we're looking to share some inspiration with dishes that our community can make.

  • Tag us with a photo submission of your grilled creation (Our Instagram and Facebook handles are @laurelglenfarmllc). OR email the photo to us at laurelglenfarm@gmail.com (We'll reshare it with your first name on our account.)

  • Simply provide us with a short caption of what it is. You are absolutely welcome to explain it if you'd like, but we just need to be able to label it on our social media. No recipe needed!

Last fall, we did a soup cook-off and Dana was declared our "Souper Star." Here's what she won (and the prize for this contest is also pretty similar and fun!)


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