Sunday, June 28, 2015

Catalpa Ridge News–Volume 20 No 3–June 30, 2015

Rain Continues!

We continued to have more rain during the week. This helped out the newly planted crops though is not good for the crops in the wet areas.


We cleaned up the back field as some crops didn’t germinate such as ½ of the cucumbers and some beets. We planted to replace them by transplanting four different varieties. The beets that were lost were tilled up and we transplanted Brussel sprouts and cabbage (2 varieties) in their place.


Michael worked in the round field to maintain control over the weeds.  In our main field we were disappointed to find that the soybean seed never germinated as well as the Italian flat beans. The red noodle beans are clip_image002growing nicely.


We have the following transplants ready to be planted this week:

  • Lettuce
  • Cucumbers
  • Chinese greens
  • Broccoli raab

We hope to seed this week as well. Seedings will include some more lettuce, cauliflower and oriental greens.


The garlic crop will start to be harvested in about two weeks. Though the bulbs appear small we are optimistic that the yields will be good. We interplanted potatoes among the garlic and they are all doing great. We will have some great blue, yellow and white varieties ready to be harvested.


Animal Report: Though our fence repairs have been working well to keep out the deer it appears that the rabbits are breaking in somehow


trellising tomatoes & tomatillos


Franklin Greenhouse Report:  All the beds are now turned over with new crops. The newly seeded arugula and radishes are already up. The tendergreen mustard in the delivery is thinnings from the greenhouse. We have seeded buckwheat for sprouts and they should be ready in about two weeks. The transplanted eggplant are doing really well and the fryer peppers are on track for harvesting in 2-3 weeks.


Weather Report:  About a 1 ¾” had already fallen during the week with more falling as the newsletter is being written. Our “wet” areas are now getting too wet. We are watching the garlic closely due to the wet conditions. If it gets too wet we will have to harvest early. The temperatures have been cool at night which is great for the lettuces, chard and kale. Though not so good for the peppers they are growing nicely.


From the Farmers’ Almanac

The Full Buck Moon occurs in July. July is normally the month when the new antlers of buck deer push out of their foreheads in coatings of velvety fur. It was also often called the Full Thunder Moon, for the reason that thunderstorms are most frequent during this time. Another name for this month’s Moon was the Full Hay Moon.

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Catalpa Ridge News–Volume 20 No 2–June 22, 2015

Rainy Week!

This week we continued transplanting into the fields to keep the crop rotations on target. We did have a rough start to the week when the rototiller broke down.

The tilling of the soil in some of our beds was delayed and this of course halted planting in those beds though we were able to plant elsewhere in the fields.

We were able to accomplish planting in the main field. Included in the plantings were: Delicata Squash, Butter Bush squash, 3 varieties of zucchini, thyme, oregano, hot peppers, broccoli, and more sweet peppers.

The Red Gold potatoes in the delivery are from tubers we bought from Johnny's selected Seed. They are an early variety and the light red skin wraps around deep yellow flesh. They are great for roasting, boiling or steaming. Just toss with some butter, salt and your favorite herb. Ummmmm....


Summer started on June 21st with the summer solstice, but a little know tidbit is that June 24th is referred to as Midsummer Day. According to the Farmer's Almanac Midsummer Day is midpoint of the growing season, halfway between planting and harvest.According to our planting schedule this year, which was late, "Midsummer Day" should actually come later!clip_image002

Everything that was transplanted is doing well.  The crew put down 3 more rows of plastic and these rows are ready to be planted hopefully by mid-week.


Franklin Greenhouse Report:  We rolled over the beds and seeded some Tendergreen mustard, spinach & transplanted eggplant. clip_image002[4]Michael installed a new irrigation system in Franklin and it is working great. All the beds now are getting consistent watering and this will improve productivity.

Weather Report:  Overall we had a rainy week. During these rainy days when field work is close to impossible the crew cleaned up the greenhouses. About 2.25" of rain fell during the past week which hampered some of our field work. The night temperatures were on the cool side which is great for the cool weather crops. Daytime temps were warmer and a bit on the muggy side.  Month to date precipitation has been 3.43' according to the Farming Forecast on

Animal Report: There is a bumper crops of rabbits sneaking into the fields on a daily basis though not too much of a nuisance "yet". On Thursday a bear was sitting in the picnic area where we sort the harvests for each site, apparently looking for some "scraps" . The deer have been staying away from the fields and all of our fence repairs are working great.

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Catalpa Ridge News–Volume 1–No 1–June 15, 2015

Lettuce Begin

Welcome to our 20th year delivering fresh veggies from the farm to our CSA members in Mahwah, Hoboken, Franklin, Wantage and to the employee cafeteria at Valley Hospital & the Kraft Center in Ridgewood and Paramus respectively.

The crew is back - Lisa, Dory and Michael.clip_image002Each spring seems to always bring a challenge and this year is not different. Our spring was all of too cold, too hot, too wet and too dry. In April we went from freezing weather to 95ยบ+ all in the same week and many of our transplants for the field crops “cooked” in the greenhouse. All of these transplants were lost and had to be reseeded. This delayed our field planting by 2-3 weeks. In addition, we had no rain for a period of 26+ days in April-May. When the rain finally did come it was too much and the fields were just too wet to plant. To top off the end of May/early June our tractor broke which further delayed our initial plantings. We were able to plant the back & round field and luckily the Franklin greenhouse was fully planted.

Franklin Greenhouse Report: We planted Texas Super Sweet Onions instead of Texas Legend this year. They will be on the small side due to late planting and will start to appear in tonight’s delivery. This year we planted Red Gold potatoes and we should start harvesting them for next week’s delivery. The Chinese Greens, Radishes, Eggplant, Hot Peppers, and Cubanelle Peppers in the greenhouse are doing well and we have a really nice crop rotation plan in force. The replanted Rosemary that we lost last year survived this winter and is doing well. We have some great beds of basil growing nicely and we will be reseeding more Oriental Greens.

From the Fields: We are fortunate to finally have the round & back fields fully planted. The fava beans never got planted early enough due to the too cold, then too dry, then too wet periods we had so there won’t be any fava beans this spring though we will be able to harvest fava greens. In the round field we have tomatillos, cabbage, chard, zucchini, kale and summer savory all doing well. The back field is planted with multiple rows of tomatoes, cucumbers, chocolate mint, beets, dill, cilantro, sorrel, fava greens, sunchokes and chard all of which are also doing well. The main field has tomatoes, thyme, peppers (many sweet varieties), parsley, winter savory, purple basil, green basil, parcel, oregano and chives. We seeded soybeans (edamame) and transplanted more lettuce and collards. We have a great planting of red-noodle beans with anticipated harvest in about 1 month. The garlic that was planted last October is doing well and the garlic harvest will start in early July. We have already started snapping the garlic curls off of the hardneck varieties and you will have them in this week’s delivery.

Animal report: Over the winter the deer broke through our fencing with the help of them weakening from the winds and the heavy snow. We spent many hours fixing the fencing, though we were late in our repairs and one day Michael found a fawn hidden in the garlic patch.


Apparently it had become separated from its mother who was on the outside of our repaired fencing while the fawn was on the inside. Dory, pictured below, was able to rescue it and put it close to where its mother would be which is by our picnic area. They were reunited after several cries from the fawn. And they really do cry “Ma”!

Thank you for supporting our farm. It is only through the continued support of our members that our farm continues to be sustainable and we continue the practice of farming. We like to grow many interesting veggies, some of which you may have never tried before. We encourage you to try-it, you’ll like it!! We always provide you with recipes and have our Harvest Identifier online as well. The CSA deliveries are seasonal, so during the spring the deliveries will consist mostly of greens with perhaps 5-7 different items. As the season progresses, more variety will be included and the deliveries will become heavier. Weekly news and recipes will be included on the blog with links within the newsletter sent out to everyone. If you have some recipes to share, please feel free to forward them so that others may try them! It is our pleasure to welcome back many of you who have been supporting the farm for many of our 19 years and welcome many new members this year.

Community supported farm members soon become connected to each other as the weeks go by. We welcome you all and look forward to working with all of you.