Sunday, August 26, 2012

Catalpa Ridge News–Volume 17 No 12–Week of August 27th

Midway through the Season!

This week was on the dry side and we did have to start irrigating some fields. The crew spent a lot of time harvesting, both for the CSA and the Hoboken Tomato Tasting. One of our Heirloom tomato fields is at its peak of production, but more will be coming from other fields. About the only field work accomplished this week was to tie up and trellis some cucumbers, beans and tomatoes so that we can get in with the weed whacker and to clean up between the rows to give the produce more room to breathe.

In between field work and harvesting, the crew has been cleaning garlic. With the tomato tasting event we have to pull the crew during a few days prior to get ready for the event, but during this week we make it a priority to catch up.

Franklin Greenhouse Report: FranklinGreenhouse 8-26-12The seeded carrots are coming along nicely. This crop of carrots will be normal “orange” carrots. We do hope you liked the rainbow carrots we delivered earlier in the season. The areas of the greenhouse that have been harvested have been replanted for fall delivery. This includes New Zealand spinach and arugula.

From the Fields: The newly seeded crops are all up and growing. Michael weeded the first planting of beets, Oriental greens, cilantro, turnips, radishes and Daikon radishes. These will be showing up in the deliveries soon. The next planting of dill, white globe radishes, maruba, sen posi, prizehead lettuce and beets have all germinated. They do need a nice rain, but all in all are doing well. The later planting of tomatoes is looking good for a late harvest as well as tomatillos. Our late planting of zucchini is on track for deliveries soon. The Oriental cucumber planting unfortunately collapsed. The plants just died back overnight. They were gorgeous one day and the next day the plants were wilted.

The chicory is doing well and some thinnings will be harvested. When we perform thinning it allows the remaining plants to grow to full size.

Our crop of Jerusalem Artichokes (otherwise known as sunchokes) are really doing well. They are always on the docket for October delivery. We should have twice as month as last year so we hope to deliver them twice this year. Our broccoli patch is not doing well, but we’ll remain optimistic.

Weather Report: It continues to be very dry. We had to run water in the back field which has the sandier soil. We will have to run water on the newly seeded patches if it doesn’t rain soon. The temperatures are now cooler and the crew one morning during harvest actually had to wear gloves! The days are getting shorter, and our start time of 6:00 am has to be move to 6:30 as it is still dark at the farm. We are thinking of getting the crew some miner lamp helmets!!!

Animal report: We noticed a break-in right at the front gate and we don’t know exactly what creature is invading the field. Since there is clover right inside that gate, Farmer Rich is thinking it may be a skunk. More reason we should get those Miners Lamp helmets for our early morning opening of the gates at the farm!!!! During lunch time one day, a small bear decided to stroll past our picnic area looking for additional snacks, since it had visited the night before and dumped out the wrappers from lunch.

Upcoming Events

garlic bulbsGarlic Gathering – Olde Lafayette Village – Route 94/15, Lafayette, NJ 11 am – 4 pm October 6th & 7th

Annual Garlic Fest – Hoboken Historical Museum – 1301 Hudson Street October 14th 1-5 pm

Week of August 27th - Pick of the Week: click on the links below or to the right to bring you to the delivery specific to your pick-up location. Deliveries will be of similar variety & poundage, but may contain different items at anytime during the season. Occasionally, some crops are ready to harvest but not enough to deliver to all our drop-off locations. What we do is start to filter them in each week to a different drop-off until there is enough to delivery to everyone.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Catalpa Ridge News Volume 17 No 11–Week of August 20th

Hoboken Tomato Tasting !

TomatoTastingSunday, August 26th, will be the Annual Tomato Tasting in Hoboken at the Hoboken Historical Museum between 1-5 pm. It is always a great event where we bring many different varieties of tomatoes for tasting as well as farm fresh produce, dips, salsa & pesto for sale. We hope to meet many members there as we have in the past. The address is 1301 Hudson Street and we are set up in the walkway. It is a fundraiser for the Hoboken Historical Museum.

Franklin Greenhouse Report: The microgreens have to be replanted as the germination was very sporadic. We will be replacing them with another planting of microgreens and some arugula. The ginger crop is really looking great, and that will be harvested around the end of the season. The Oriental greens had their share of problems and we hope the problems are under control. Renee seeded some carrots for the end of the season harvests and they are coming up well. She has also started zucchini transplants in the greenhouse for planting in the fields at the farm, probably a bit late, but we hope they will do well.

From the Fields:  This week we worked on the round field and got caught up on weeding. In this field we have tomatoes, eggplant, peppers and a new variety of tomato, Indigo Rose.  All the plants are doing well and have come along great with the weather cooperating the past few weeks. We are a bit behind on weeding the other fields, but this week with good weather should catch up on it.

Michael seeded more radishes, Oriental greens, lettuce, beets and dill this past week. They are all actually up and growing as we write this news. The crew transplanted more cucumbers and zucchini so their production will start soon as zukes produce within 45 days. We transplanted some broccoli as our original planting just did not produce. We hope the newest crop will come in by the end of the season. Four rows of broccoli were lost from our original planting which is probably due to the weird weather patterns we had where it was hot, then got too cold, then got too hot again. The cauliflower has been decimated by the animals.

The crew has been busy harvesting the tomatoes and keeping on top of them as during a dry period, followed by rain, the heirloom tomatoes will often crack. We want continue this practice so that the quality of the heirlooms we harvest remains high. The small red tomatoes in this week’s delivery are the variety known as Siberian, which is a tasty small round red tomato. Most of Saturday was spent sorting the tomatoes to cull out the damaged ones and make sure each delivery sites gets a nice variety as well.

Weather Report:  There have been a bunch of locally severe storms over the past week, some with small hail. Fortunately, no severe damage occurred at the farm.We did receive about 1 ½” of rain over the past week, spread out over the week. This really helped the newly seeded crops and we haven’t had to irrigate the fields. This late in the season we are pleased that our pond is filled up again. It was down over 2 feet during the dry periods and during that time Farmer Rich was worried about lack of water. Mother Nature has rebounded for us, though most of the mid-west is still in a severe drought condition.

Animal report:  The rabbits and groundhogs had a run on the fields this week. Crops they consumed were lettuce, tomatoes, broccoli and the cauliflower. Farmer Rich found the breach in the fence where the groundhogs are getting in and fixed it. The rabbits on the other hand are more elusive as they apparently are just living inside the fence and continue to reproduce.

Upcoming Events
clip_image002[4]Annual Heirloom Tomato Tasting – Hoboken Historical Museum – 1301 Hudson Street
August 26th 1-5 pm

 

 

Week of August 20th - Pick of the Week: click on the links below or to the right to bring you to the delivery specific to your pick-up location. Deliveries will be of similar variety & poundage, but may contain different items at anytime during the season. Occasionally, some crops are ready to harvest but not enough to deliver to all our drop-off locations. What we do is start to filter them in each week to a different drop-off until there is enough to delivery to everyone.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Catalpa Ridge News–Volume 17 No 10–Week of August 13th

Time for Heirlooms!

Tomato Tuesday – The harvest of the heirlooms continued this week. Japanese Truffles, Brandywine, Vintage Wine, Striped German, Yellow Brandywine, and Carolina Gold are some of the varieties that will be mixed into the delivery of heirloom tomatoes this week. More to come as the plants are doing well.

LIsa BrownSwiss

John JerseyDairyCow

Lisa Exhibiting her Brown Swiss dairy cow John exhibiting his Jersey dairy cow

News from NJ State Fair - John placed second in his division for exhibiting his Jersey dairy cow and Lisa placed first for exhibiting her Brown Swiss.

Franklin Greenhouse Report: The microgreens planted last week weren’t ready for delivery this week but hopefully will make next week’s delivery. The husk cherries should start to make the deliveries. A large planting of basil was started, as you can never have enough basil. Up and growing are the China Rose radishes, but the Oriental Greens aren’t doing well.

From the Fields: The recent rain has helped the field crops immensely. The recently seeded beets, Daikon radishes, turnips, mustard, cilantro and Cherry Belle radishes are among the crops that have benefited from the rain. The sorrel in the back field should be harvested for delivery next week or the week after. We planted 2000 leeks in March, but they appear to be a crop failure which is a disappointment. The problem with them has been the wild weather. We had planted them early, and then it got cold so they probably thought that it was winter, then it got warm again and they started to flower, which isn’t good. We did pull the flower buds off in the hopes that we would get some leeks but that doesn’t appear to have worked.

Our plantings of tomatoes, zucchini and cucumbers continue to produce well, both the original and secondary plantings. We lost another planting of lettuce but the subsequent planting is coming along well. Needless to say the kale keeps cranking along and the eggplants are coming in. The newest planting of chard is almost ready for harvest.

After the harvest on Sunday morning, the crew was ready to perform some field work, especially some weeding. The recent rain not only helped the field crops, but also accelerated the weeds. We needed to take the veggie beds back from them so that the veggies don’t have to compete for water and nutrients.

Weather Report: About 1” of rain fell during the past week. There was a threat of hail last weekend but fortunately no hail fell over the farm. If it did hail there would have been no kale this week! There have been scattered thunderstorms throughout the area. When they move over the farm the crew holes up in the greenhouse and cleans garlic until the storms pass.

As we get ready to watch the meteor showers we are reminded that this month there are 2 full moons, one was on the 1st of August and the second will be on the 31st. This is a once in a “blue moon” event occurring approximately every 2 ½ years and is known as a Blue Moon.

Animal report: The fences continue to keep the animals on the outside with only minor problems occurring inside the fence, namely the rabbits. The sparrows, our “air-force”, are in control of the insects, the most natural way for our bug control.

Upcoming Events
clip_image002[4]Annual Heirloom Tomato Tasting – Hoboken Historical Museum – 1301 Hudson Street
August 26th 1-5 pm


Week of August 13th - Pick of the Week: click on the links below or to the right to bring you to the delivery specific to your pick-up location. Deliveries will be of similar variety & poundage, but may contain different items at anytime during the season. Occasionally, some crops are ready to harvest but not enough to deliver to all our drop-off locations. What we do is start to filter them in each week to a different drop-off until there is enough to delivery to everyone.

Sunday, August 05, 2012

Catalpa Ridge News–Volume 17 No 9–Week of August 6th

Blue Ribbons !

1STPLA~1The crew did rather well at the NJ State Fair in the Open Vegetable Show:

  • Lisa – 23 Blue Ribbons
  • Renee – 11 Blue Ribbons with 1 Best in Show for Curly Leaf Parsley
  • Michael – 10 Blue Ribbons with 1 Best in Show for Beans

The NJ State Fair continues to Sunday, August 12th and we eagerly are looking forward to see how Lisa and John do exhibiting their dairy cows.

We have peaches this week from Soon Orchards. As we have passed along in prior newsletters, local fruit is scarce this year due to the freeze that we had in the area in the late spring which destroyed the buds on the trees.

We have started to harvest the Heirloom tomatoes so you will start to see many of the different varieties that we grow in your deliveries. This week some of the varieties we harvested are Striped German, Green Zebra, Black Krim and Black Brandywine. Far more flavorful than the standard round red tomatoes, they do have a shorter shelf life as they have thinner skins. Make a great looking multicolored tomato salad with the yellows, greens and deep purples!

Franklin Greenhouse Report: This week, Renee planted microgreens in the Franklin Greenhouse. Some of the varieties she has started include brassica mixes, radishes, tendergreen mustard and Oriental greens. They should be in the deliveries over the next few weeks. We have found them great just for salad, on top of pizza and made chicken Milanese. She seed carrots for the fall deliveries this week as well. The ginger continues to do well. It is a slow grower taking eight to ten months to grow to harvest time so it should be ready just before the end of our harvest year. We are harvesting at least 1 to 2 items per week from the Franklin Greenhouse and in tonight’s deliver is the Rosemary.

From the Fields: The dill, beets, turnips, radishes, Daikon, and Torazorah seeded over the past few weeks are all up and growing. They were thinned this week to improve the plant’s production. The newest planting of zucchini in the back field is doing well. The crew direct seeded zucchini and cucumbers last week in the field and it appears that a squirrel or two is fond of the seeds that they planted. Most of them were eaten in the course of the week. Since we are not a big fan of direct seeding anyway, Renee had already started zucchini and cucumber transplants for us to plant into the fields for the later deliveries.

This week, we tilled up a few areas to plant more fall crops such as more fava greens and Oriental greens. Additional plantings of lettuce, escarole & chicory are all in. There will be thinnings of these plantings in upcoming deliveries for salad mixes. The tomatoes, eggplant and peppers are all doing great in our newly renovated round field. As you will note, the Kale keeps cranking along and I am vigorously coming up with new ideas for recipes.

Weather Report: As we compose this newsletter, we are receiving much needed rain, though in the form of a thunderstorm with a threat of hail as a cool front moves through. During the week it was extremely dry and hot, and it was best to have early quitting times most every day. Sunday morning was probably the worst and after the harvest & breaking down the deliveries for each site, the crew was burned out.

Animal report: We still have some rabbits in the field, though not doing much damage. The veggie that they like the best this week are the tomatoes. Just as the tomatoes are ready to harvest, the rabbits get up early in the morning and decide to have a tasting. Fortunately we have an abundance of tomato plants so there are plenty for both them & you.

Upcoming Events

clip_image002NJ State Fair – Sussex County Farm & Horse Show – continues to August 12th . More info: http://www.njstatefair.com/

clip_image002[4]Annual Heirloom Tomato Tasting – Hoboken Historical Museum – 1301 Hudson Street
August 26th 1-5 pm

Week of August 6th - Pick of the Week: click on the links below or to the right to bring you to the delivery specific to your pick-up location. Deliveries will be of similar variety & poundage, but may contain different items at anytime during the season. Occasionally, some crops are ready to harvest but not enough to deliver to all our drop-off locations. What we do is start to filter them in each week to a different drop-off until there is enough to delivery to everyone.