No, I don’t mean us. I mean your carrots. (Although the mercury did nudge towards eighty on Saturday, which was temptation aplenty to shed the shirt – were it not for the steady flow of rock truck drivers hauling on Floras Creek Road…).
From here on out you’ll be getting your carrots without their tops. Two main reasons why:
- It’s a much quicker harvest to mow down the tops and then fork out the carrots, rather than painstakingly pulling and bunching. At this point in the season when there is so much food to harvest, we need all the time-saving tricks we can muster.
- In some of our more densely planted beds of carrots, the tops become weak and floppy, which makes bunching tricky and slow.
If your guinea pig was really digging the carrot tops, we apologize.
Oh No, Blight!: Our Uncertain Potato Plight
Last year - as some of you will remember - was a banner year for potatoes on the farm. The combination of good spud-growing weather and careful selection of varieties, combined with aggressive hilling using our new electric cultivating tractor, yielded the best potato crop we’ve ever had.
It looked like we were on track for a repeat performance this season, until the very sudden and very terrible appearance of what we think is early blight in a section of the potato field. In the span of one short week, a third of the field went from vibrant bushy green, to a sea of skeletonized brown stalks. Oddly enough, it hasn’t spread much beyond that initial area – and we’re keeping our fingers crossed that it doesn’t.
Early blight is caused by a fungus known as Alternaria solani, which is fairly ubiquitous in the soil wherever solanaceous crops (potatoes & tomatoes) are grown. We work to avoid blight by rotating our crops carefully (not planting potatoes where potatoes grew the previous three years), but that’s not always enough. The fungus has reared its head this season (most likely due to the long spells of grey weather we’ve had). We are doing our best to control it by: carefully monitoring irrigation in the potato patch (water can help spread it quickly); being careful not to spread the blight by walking through the healthy potato plants; and digging up all the affected tubers/plants as quickly as possible.
Unfortunately, blight can have a drastic impact on yields and do cosmetic damage to the tubers; the potatoes you are receiving this week are smaller than they should be, and many of them are scabby or scarred up. They’re going to take a little extra work to clean up, but they should still be good eating.
We are hopeful that the other 2/3 of the field will maintain its vigor and size up some lovely spuds on par with last year’s harvest. In the meantime, you may have to tolerate one or two distributions of ugly taters as we work through the blighted section of the field first.
So get out your peeler, and cross your fingers that the fungus among us doesn’t travel down the row any farther.
In your share this week:
- Purplette Onions
- Head Lettuce
- Oregano & Summer Savory
This means that some pickup locations will receive it this week, others next week – or in a future week.
Oregano & Summer Savory
You’ll find a few stalks of summer savory and oregano in your tote this week, freshly harvested from the new perennial herb patch. The oregano is the dark green, bushy-leaved one. The summer savory is the lacier, long-stemmed variety. Both have distinct flavors; the savory is closely related to mint with a peppery-thyme-like flavor. Here’s a recipe that calls for summer savory. You have most of the ingredients in your harvest basket this week, minus the green beans.
Please note: all of our produce is field-rinsed, not washed. We recommend you wash all of your produce before eating it.
For recipes and ideas, check out these links:
Our own collection of recipes that you can contribute to
Our website’s recipe “search engine,” where you can hunt down recipes by ingredient
A vast collection of recipes, searchable by one or multiple ingredients
A storehouse of recipes, searchable by ingredient
A Washington farm that has a good collection of seasonal recipes