CSA Summer Share 2014 - Week #13 (26 March/28-29 March)


FINAL WEEK OF THE SUMMER SHARE This is week #13 of the summer share and week #26 of our CSA season.  As this is the last week of the Summer Share - Thank You to all of our members.  With your support we have continued to explore how to grow food sustainably and worked on providing a diverse box each week to our local community.  As we begin to prepare some of the areas of the farm for a winter's rest, we have already begun planning next years season.

Our summer crops of beans, cucumbers, capsicum, eggplant, sweet corn and tomatoes are still producing.  We will begin to harvest the first Autumn broccoli planting at the end of this week. Next week, we will begin to harvest leeks and parsnips.

NOTES ON STORING THE HARVEST Please check out our Vegetable & Fruit page on the website to find tips on maximizing the life of your veggies.  We envisage that many of the vegetables you are receiving this week will last for two weeks with careful attention to storing upon arrival. Although we do wash all the greens after harvest, we are washing to take the heat out of the plants and wash away some surface dirt, not to prepare them for consumption.  We also spray a seaweed/herb brew about every ten days.  While this will not harm you, it does have a taste. We do suggest washing your produce prior to eating.

WHAT’S IN THE BOX The following are the items harvested this week.  Items and quantities in your box may vary depending on your harvest day and the total harvest of each crop.  The boxes are completely governed by what is ripe and ready for harvest and how much of it there is.  We endeavor to divide the harvest fairly. 1/4 share: 5-7 items   1/2 share: 8-10 items   Full Share: 10-12 items

French Beans – Green bush beans. Bok Choy –Bunches of nutrient dense bok choy.  This has more vitamins and minerals then broccoli! Carrots –Harvesting  'Cosmic Purple' an heirloom variety. Capsicum –The capsicums all sense that Autumn is here and are ripening much faster now.  There are heaps of coloured capsicum, sweet and filled with vitamin C. Chillies – Harvesting 'Hungarian Hot Wax' and 'Cayenne Long Thin'.  To read about how hot they are and identify which you may have received, please go to our Capsicum and Chillies post. Sweet Corn – Yes, those may be big, fat corn borers on top of your ears of corn.  This is organic corn and they love it too! They are usually only on the top of the ear.  You can just cut that off and the rest is fine. We have tried to remove the ones we saw but their evidence may still be there. Cucumbers – We are growing several varieties of cucumber.  One is noticeably bitter.  Test your cucumber.  If it is bitter, peel it, slice it and place it in a colander with salt for 20 minutes.  Rinse and drain.  Rinse and drain.  Dress with olive oil, vinegar, salt and pepper. We do have surplus cucumbers available for only two more weeks if you would like to make pickles. Garlic – This is biodynamically grown garlic.  Sprayed with seaweed brews and biodynamic preparations.  It is full of trace minerals, strong and sweet. Mesclun – Mixed lettuce, beetroot and silver beet leaves. Red Onions – Good for salads and stir fries. Baby Rocket –Bags of very spicy baby rocket. Spinach –Bags of 'Bloomsdale' English Spinach.  Great raw or cooked. Tomatoes –The tomato’s flavour is better ripened away from direct sunlight so we do harvest ours before they are fully ripe.  We leave them on the kitchen counter to ripen which should take about three to four days.  The natural sugars in tomatoes are lost if they are refrigerated.  We are currently harvesting heirloom varieties 'Tommy Toe',  ‘Black Russian’, ‘Rouge de Marmande’, 'Marglobe' and ‘Ox Heart Red’. Watermelon – Harvesting 'Klondike' watermelon.

Extras Eggplant – Harvesting the larger variety of eggplant 'Florida Market' and the Asian variety 'Long, Thin Purple'. Pimiento de Padrons –Delightful "sometimes hot, sometimes not" chilies that are wonderful fried as a Tapas style entree.  They have a lovey full flavour great for pizzas and stir fries too.  These come bagged.

RECIPE SUGGESTIONS Classic Greek Salad Sesame Salmon with Honey Bok Choy Blue Cheese, Proscuitto and Rocket Bruschetta Spinach and Chicken Curry


We have been thinking lately about the viability of small scale, sustainable market gardens to "feed" the ballooning population. Our garden has "new" soil, maybe 2.5 acres under cultivation, and we are still testing varieties, timing and cycles of plants. We are currently feeding 80 families and estimate we can continue to increase that number with experience and as our soil life grows.But...as biodynamic/organic growers can our produce compete with commercially grown food? I do walk into a local fruit and veggie shop and marvel over the size of their capsicum and eggplants. With all my research, I know that those vegetables contain maybe 25% of the nutrients that the ones we are growing contain. But they are so big and "perfect" looking...does the vibrancy of nutrient dense food show?The Red Hill Agricultural and Horticultural Show began in 1922 with the local apple growers constructing an apple pyramid and local axe men felling the trees on the site. There are still axe men and apples and vegetables, flowers, cattle, sheep, poultry, alpacas, cooking, craft and photography. We entered 15 categories including 'Collection of 15 distinct varieties of vegetables'. Vegetables are judged strictly on appearance, uniformity in size, diversity, and overall display. Our display won the best collection and we were the overall aggregate winners in the vegetable section.  We were very excited to see biodynamic/organic food recognized!!

Small scale, sustainable market gardens have the capacity to provide produce that is more nutrient dense then mono cropped, heavily sprayed produce. They keep the soil life alive which also helps with climate change. They can work in a non-competitive environment with other small scale producers resulting in the sharing of information and resources. Without your support as members though, we would not have this great opportunity to grow as growers.  Thank you!

We have been waiting for the first Autumn broccoli crop to produce heads and it has finally started!  This variety is known for its big heads and we have four hundred feet of broccoli so we are hoping this first crop will go for a few weeks!  We will also begin harvesting leeks, parsnips and sweet potato over the next four weeks.  These crops will continue through Autumn along with beet root, bok choy, broccoli, cabbage, carrots, cauliflower, kale, lettuce,  pumpkins, romanesco broccoli, silver beet, snow peas, spinach, and turnips.

FARM PICK UP SCHEDULE To accommodate those picking up their Mountain View Farm milk, Farm Pick Up times are Friday afternoon from 2pm-5pm and Saturday mornings from 8am-11am. Please contact us if you need to arrange to pick your vegetables up outside of these times.

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Please note – Photo is of a full share box.