Friday, August 29, 2008

Turkey Hill CSA Newsletter - 2008, Week 10

On the farm

I'm getting this newsletter out a little late this week. Things are shifting to fall on the farm and I can't seem to catch up with everything!

Oh the cauliflower - this week we picked the 1st fluch of yellow (cheddar), purple (graffiti) and white. I thing everyone got some of the cheddar, more of the purple and white to come in the next few weeks.

The corn looks fantastic, fully tassled, big beautiful ears just aren't quite ready. I'm giving them one last watering and they will be sweet and ready some time next week. After that, we'll have a few (3-4) solid weeks of corn.

The tomatoes are slowly starting to ripen, and i may have some for you from the farm by next week or the week after. The peppers started getting picked this week - tey are just starting to come in. Summer squash is peaking, and the squash bugs are making headway in some of the squash beds. Miraculously, on of the squash beds remains squash bug free! Its making big, beautiful green zucchinis.

The ditch has come back and we are watering like mad. A few more weeks until fall sets in for real, but the mornings and evenings are already cool.

Crested Butte share - note that I forgot to bring the extras last week, sorry there was no kale or chard, it was with the extras. I will send extras with the delivery this week.

Tomatoes last week from a nearby farm, ours are slowly ripening.

A quick note on all the plastic bags in the CB boxes - we bag everything to keep it fresh (produce must stay moist and cold), but we can't reuse the ones you send back - please reuse them in your own house or community.

This week's box (probable box)

Salad Mix - the new bed is coming in, tender salad continues!
Broccoli - tons coming in now
Cauliflower - white, orange ('cheddar') or purple ('grafitti') - more to come
Chard or Kale - now in the extras area
Summer Squash - Zucchini & Patty pan
Cucumbers - really coming in now
Carrots - they just keep coming
Onions - yellows this week, reds next week
Garlic - keep saving this up!
Cabbage - green (red coming soon)

Fruit Share


Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Turkey Hill CSA Newsletter - 2008, Week 9

On the farm

Fall has arrived on the farm early this year. The mornings are cool, even cold, but it heats up quickly. The crops are ripening at a steady pace and i've begun my cleanup rounds, tilling or mowing down old beds that are weedy and threaten to spread weed seeds that will cost us next year (and for years beyond).

A few weeks ago I took a little photo shoot walk and took some shots of the maturing field from the ditch - follow this link to view the slide show, complete with captions.

Our intern Valentin is gone, returned to his family in France. A couple more weeks of summer and he is back to school. We already miss him and send him fond wishes, someday Valentin plans to run a CSA (and more) in France.

The canal is off again! We got a good week of watering in and mostly refilled the pond, but a leak below the recent break site forced the ditch company to shut the ditch off again. This canal irrigates 40,000 acres in the North Fork Valley, so a lot of farmers are upset by the outages. I feel fortunate we have the pond and can still irrigate enough to keep the crops from stressing from the lack of water. more info at

Don't miss your chance to visit the farm - the fields are at perhaps their peask of beaty. If you are a farm pickup shareholder, take the time to go for a walk - straight out to the fields, just keep walking and walking until to the potatoes or get tired. If you are a Crested Butte pickup shareholder, please plan a trip over in the next few weeks to visit the farm. Once we get our first fall freeze there is a lot less to see. If you haven't made it over by the end of September, consider coming for the super fun Mountain Harvest Festival - Sept. 26,27,28 - this weekend long event in Paonia (just 10 miles from us) is a blast: check out the details of this year's event: Please call to let us know you are coming and we will plan to give you a tour.

With the coming of week 9 we are more than half way thru the summer harvest season (8 more weeks if we go to the usual 17). Please email me with your comments: how is it going? are you sick of chard or beans? are you dying for a melon or tomato (notes below)? let me know!

The lost vegetables: One more word on what is still to come: The tomatoes are still struggling along, with some fruit set, but not much ripening. If we have a late season, some should ripen, but an early freeze would erase the crop. We are planning to cover these and a few other crops with row cover which affords them a few degrees of protection, and helps keep them warmer for fruit ripening. Peppers and eggplant are similarly just beginning to set fruit, so the harvest depends on the weather at this point. I do hope to purchase some tomatoes and peppers from other local organic/natural growers for the boxes. Please visit your local farm stand or market to fill your tomatoe cravings!

The sweet corn looks fantastic: the early variety should begin to ripen next week - look for an abundance of corn for the next few weeks as we harvest the different varieties. The onions are finally sizing up - look for some nice yellow onions for the next few weeks (sweet walla wallas), then white and red onions for the last month of the CSA season. Some recent scouting in the onion beds revealed a nice stand of shallots that will be ready in another month, and more leeks that will be ready at the end of the year.

The potatoes have been quitly growing away in the furthest field... They are so far away that I almost never get out to visit them, but they are looking good. I plan to start digging up the first bed to give you a new potatoe sampling within the next week or two. The real potatoe harvest is still a few weeks off.

The melons actually look great, but will never make it to ripening without a long fall - which is still possible. even if i cover the plants with row cover they will stop crowing if the weather turns cold. Watch this space for updates.

The winter squash and pumpkins look great and are finally setting fruit. These are still a month off and will round out the final boxes. The cauliflower is looking great, but just starting to be ready.

Did I miss anything? Is there something you wamnt to have that we haven't included?

Don't forget flowers! beautiful glads and sunflowers still available, a real deal at 6 for $10. call or email your order.

Important Crested Butte pickup note:
Certain items may begin to appear outside your box - this week the summer squash and cucumbers will be outside the box for example- one reason is that we pack the boxes friday, but pick more squash saturday, another is the boxes are crammed and some items won't fit, a final reason is that some items don't like being stored in our coolers inside the box - they prefer a warmer storage temperature!

Look for the ALL SHAREHOLDERS box(es): When you pick up, look for a box or boxes labeled 'ALL SHAREHOLDERS' -then take what the label says: for example it might read Cucumers, Half - 1, Full - 2. This means half shares take 1 cucumber, full shares take 2.

This week's box (probable box)

Salad Mix - the new bed is coming in, salad continues!
Broccoli - tons coming in now, lots for full shares
Chard or Kale - now in the extras area
Summer Squash & Patty pan
Cucumbers - really coming in now
Garlic - keep saving this up!

Fruit Share
We are excied to finally get some great PAONIA peaches from First Fruits, check these out. Also this week, the first of the nectarines which should last around two weeks. Apples, plums & pears soon.

Coming Soon
I think I covered everything above. As we head into fall, the rest of the crops you haven't had yet will be coming in. Stock up by ordering case quantities and spending a little time in the kitchen. Freezing or canning some of the summers bounty is a great way to extend the season!

Friday, August 15, 2008

Turkey Hill CSA Newsletter - Week 8

This week I asked our intern Valentin to contribute to the newsletter. Valentin has is a French agricultural student and here as part of his school program. He has been the hardest working, most interested and engaged intern we have ever had. Here is what he wrote (small edits):

From the Farm

after rain, the beautiful weather came; because of the big rain storm the irrigation canal breached and now the canal for the irrigation is totally dried - fortunately we have water from the pond (the ditch is expected to be out a full week in all). they work very hard to fix it and we hope water come back for irrigate again the field because plants are beginning to feel tired (they are getting watered, but not the usual long soakings they love because we are conserving the water we do have). you can follow the construction on this website:

some vegetables miss like tomatoes but they come soon; the frozen in june was the worst thing what happened for them and now they grow slowly; another vegetables artichokes they have a lot of leaves and they look great but the flower don't want come !!
we bought two different kind of corn for csa this week; one bicolor white-yellow corn from an naturally grown farm and another ('Olathe Sweet') yellow corn from a certified organic farm, but our corn come soon, maybe 2 weeks. (we have two large plantings of our corn favorites: 'delectable' - a super-sweet bicolor and 'silver queen' a large eared, white, old fasioned corn with a great corn flavor. our corn should last 2-3 weeks)

this week's box :

  • 1 chard or kale - great for you; if you take chard and you see leaves look bad you can cook the stalk

  • 2 garlic head for half and 4 for full- dry head good with pesto(basil and garlic) or the french chef can give a good simple recipe... (basil special order available, call the farm)

  • 1 bag of brocolli- first of the season.

  • 1 bag of peas- maybe the last one so enjoy it(shelling or snow)

  • 3 corn half and 5 corn full- round earth corn in 2-3 weeks

  • 1 beets bunch-yummy, red, stripe, golden (thats all for beets!)

  • 1lettuce- the last of the season

  • no salads bag!!! (there will be more)

  • beans- yummmm!! green, purple and yellow; so if you think they are too big, cut in 2 part(half-half).(cf, french recipe) full 2 half 1 bag

  • zuchinni-summer squash- a lot, so 2 for half and 4 for full (farm pickup more next week)

  • 1 cucumber half- 2 full in a salad with a vinaigrette(from french for sure!!!)

  • chives, parsley, oregano, sage, thyme- take one bunch

  • onions-1 half and 2 full, first !

fruit share:

  • 1 bag of peaches-from paonia; yum in the special french pie(cf, french recipe)

  • 1 bag of apricots-from paonia;mega yummy in the special french pie or clafoutis or flan(cf, french recipe)

comming soon in your box:

  • corn-popcorn?,multicolor and ornamental; 1-2 weeks
  • eggplants, peppers, tomatoes
  • pepper
  • potatoes
  • winter squash
  • more cabbage
  • cauliflower - white, yellow, purple
  • onions: red, white, yellow
  • shallots
  • Fruit Share: Apples, Pears, Plums, Lots more Peaches

french stuff recipe:

pie crust:

2 cup of wheat flour
1 bar of salted butter(100 grams approximately)
flavor in option; lemon zest or lime zest, vanilla, cannella
10 grams of water so 10 ml of water

mix butter and flour,with your hand.
put your option flavor
when the pie crust look like sand, put the water and mix.
then don't mix a lot!!! make a ball and put in a fridge for 30 min or 1 hour.

peache pie:

4 beautiful peaches
some sugar
some almond or walnut(french advice: whole almond and you ground it with your hand)

put the pie crust with weight on it and do some hole with a fork, put on the oven for 10-15 min at 375F, when the pie it's little brown, take out the oven.
cut the peaches in thin slice and put on pie.
after 10 min at 375F put some sugar on the top of the pie.

apricots flan:

- 600 g apricots 5-6 apricots
- 5 eggs
- 50 g of sugar
- 20 cl cream(half-half)
- 10 cl milk
- some almonds

mix eggs, sugar; then milk and cream with a whip.
take out the pest of apricots and cut half and half, then put apricots in a dish.
put the mix on apricots. put some almond on the top.

advice, you can put a pie crust on the bottom;yummy!!!
you can put some flavor like vanilla or grand marnier.

french beans with garlic and parsley:

1 lbs of beans
2 garlic(not head)
1 bunch of parsley
salt, pepper

boiled beans in a dish with salt.
cut garlic in thin slice or crush it.
when beans are ready, put in another dish with some butter salt and pepper.
cook 5 or more min on low fire.
cut the parsley in thin slice, put the parsley at the last moment; it's important don't cook parsley because the flavor go out!!

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Turkey Hill CSA Newsletter - Week 7

From the Farm

As I mentioned last week, everything seems to be coming on at once. Some crops, like broccoli, cabbage and cucumbers are just starting to trickle in, while others like summer squash are starting to go bonkers! Because of the limited supply on some items, some people will get one item, while other people get a different item, or full shares may get an item that half shares don't get. Don't worry - as the weeks progress, everyone will get every item!

RAIN! Unbelievably, we have had a couple of solid downpours this last week, bringing much needed water to every square inch of the field (irrigation only goes so far), cleaning the leaves of dust and even bringing a dose of fertilizer to the entire farm. Most people don't realize that lightning storms of the Nitrogen Cycle (see - I had been a farmer for many years before i got the good news - lightning storms fix atmospheric nitrogen into a form available for plants! Last year an intense lightning storm actually produced a noticeable 'boost' to the entire field. Its a mixed blessing though, because in our area, lightning usually brings the risk of fire as well, and the last two seasons we have had medium sized fires that were close, scary and threatening. Fortunately, these recent storms were accompanied by a healthy rainfall, and the fire risk is now very low.

The flowers are in full bloom. We have beautiful Gladiolli, unbelievable Sunflowers bred as cut flowers, snapdragons and zinnias with intense colors and fragrances, plus fillers like statice and amaranth. Please call the farm to place an order before Thursday night: flowers are $10/bundle - let us know what colors or types you prefer, or ask for a mix.

Questions and Answers

Q: Where are the extras?
A: Coming this week or next, look for an "Extras" box in the pickup area. Take anything you want from the extras, and put anything in your box you don't like in the extras for another shareholder to grab.

Send me your questions! Need a recipe? We have a recipe page on the website. Want to know when a certain vegetable is coming in? confused about something in your box? email me!

This Week's Box

Chard or Kale - great for you, these greens will move to the extras area in the next week or two
Carrots or Beets, Carrots slowly sizing up (many more to come), beets continue - our last bed next week.
Head Lettuce - nearly the end of the lettuce season, but the cool weather is helping extend the harvest.
Salad Mix - yum - we may be a little short on salad for the next week, but more is coming.
Scallions - a bumper crop this year, enjoy these delicious fresh onions
Beans - Green, Purple & Yellows - delicious
Peas - snow peas are still coming in
Broccoli - lots starting to come in, just starting
Cucumbers - just starting
Squash - Zuchinnis first, with pattypan, crooked neck and other types to follow - many many more coming!
Cabbage - just starting - we have green, red, savoy (like green but with crinckled leaves) and napa (or chineese) cabbage
Basil - a little bit for flavor, call about pesto quantities - note: wash immediately before using, we can't wash the basil for you because it will blacken in storage unless completely dry. the early basil is always a bit dirty because the plants are short and the leaves we harvest are close to the ground.

Full Share

Extra heads lettuce

Beans - extra

Kale, chard - extra

Beets - or carrots - extra


Apricots - from First Fruits of Paonia

Peaches - certified organic 1st of the season from Austin Farms, Paonia

Coming Soon (1-3 weeks)

Summer Squash - more
Broccoli - more
onions - more
Cucumbers - more
Olathe Organic Sweet Corn (of we can get it)
tomatoes - from another local natural grower who didn't have a spring freeze like we did

3 or more Weeks




Winter Squash




Friday, August 1, 2008

Turkey Hill CSA Newsletter - Week 6

From the Farm

The farm is really coming into bloom this week. I'll post some updated photos soon. Everything seems to be coming in (or about to come in) at once. The summer squash are loaded with tiny zucchinis and patty pans (and a healthy crop of viscous squash bugs), the cucumber plants are full of tiny little cucumbers. The broccoli beds, although planted in a succession over a month or more in the spring, all seem to be coming in at the same time. The cabbages are all heading up, it looks like the green cabbages will start being ready in two weeks, with savoy cabbage (crinkly leaf), red cabbage and some napa cabbage coming soon after. Everything else will be coming in over the next month or so.

The second batch of peas managed to elude the rabbits, but they aren't very productive because they don't like the heat of summer. This will be the last week for peas, I hope everyone got them at least once, sorry if I somehow missed you. The beans, on the other hand, LOVE the heat of summer and are producing at an unbelievable rate. Yellow and green beans are in full production, and the purple beans will start next week. These are great steamed, check the website for a recipe sheet. If you get too many beans, blanch some and throw them in the freezer.

Questions and Answers

Q: What is #2 Fruit?
Generally #2 fruit is fruit that is culled during the sorting process. For example, after the ripe cherries are harvested by hand from the trees, the cherries are carefully sorted and packed. any cherries with bird pecks, irregular shapes or other damaged are moved into a seconds box. In a good year, there are very few seconds - and when the quality is good on a crop like peaches, the fruit is often packed directly into the boxes in the field, and no seconds are packed at all. #2 fruit usually sells for half the price of #1 fruit and must be used quickly - typically processed into jam, frozen or some other processing - because of the damage, the fruit won't store well.

Send me your questions! Need a recipe? We have a recipe page on the website. Want to know when a certain vegetable is coming in? confused about something in your box? email me!

This Week's Box

Chard - bunched, green, red, yellow or rainbow bunches
Carrots or Beets, Carrots are just starting to size up, beets continue to come in, we are shifting to our last bed next week.
Head Lettuce - more green romaine & green butters - one more week or so left.
Salad Mix - yum - we may be a little short on salad for the next week, but more is coming.
Scallions - a bumper crop this year, enjoy these delicious fresh onions
Bulb Fennel - just the smell will knock you out, give this unusual vegetable a try as a flavoring in sauce or salad dressing, or in a dish. here are some recipes:
Beans - Green & Yellows - delicious steamed, then sauteed lightly with almonds.
Garlic - stores great, take any extra and store in a cool dark place.

Full Share

Extra heads lettuce


Kale - bunched

Beets - or carrots

Extra Garlic



Lambert Cherries - 90 years in the making - these delicious, deep red cherries are from a stand of 90 year old Lambert trees managed organically by the Kropp brothers in Paonia.

Both from First Fruits of Paonia

Coming Soon (1-3 weeks)

Basil - delicious in sauces, summer is a leaf - call to special order for pesto.
Beans - Green, Yellow & Purple - starts next week, a ton of these are nearly ready
Summer Squash - starts soon, they are flowering now
Broccoli - almost ready
Early onions - next week
Cucumbers - flowering now
Olathe Organic Sweet Corn (of we can get it)

3 or more Weeks


Cabbage - Red, Green & Savoy



Winter Squash