Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Big Red Farm Stand, Wednesday October 15, 1-5pm

Pumpkin harvest
Hello friends,

PUMPKINS!  We've been talking about them, and here they are.  Different shapes and sizes of pumpkins.  Perfect for your front steps, mantelpiece, or wherever you put your pumpkins, these are primarily carving pumpkins, not eating pumpkins (we'll have some eating pumpkins next week).  Our farm crew harvested the entirety of our jack-o-lantern pumpkin patch on Tuesday, and we'll have them available as long as supplies last.  Come by the stand this afternoon and give a pumpkin a good home!
Fall spinach

We have a couple other new additions to the farm stand table this week: spinach and celery.  Our celery is greener and leafier than what you may be used to, and it's incredibly flavorful, making it an indispensable addition to stock or soup.


Though we still have about six weeks of our market season left, mid-October is the time when most of our work on the farm has as much to do with next year as this one.  Many of our fall crops are already harvested at this point; we still have some winter squash to bring in, but all of our beets, carrots, potatoes, onions, garlic, and pumpkins are safely gathered into the barn or the cooler.  Crops like peppers and eggplants should keep producing until we get a frost.  Lettuce, spinach and broccoli can handle a light frost, and after a harder frost the kale and Brussels sprouts will taste better than ever.  Yet another reason to love fall -- all this great food with so much less work!

Kubota tractor with disc
Since we're not seeding and planting anymore, and our harvesting time is reduced, AND (this is a big one) the weeds aren't really growing much in this cool weather, we have the chance to start putting fields to rest for the winter.  Most of the field space we used for growing veggies in 2014 won't be cropped again until 2016.  We'll be using cover crops to build fertility and prevent erosion in those areas during the 2015 season, so that they'll be raring to go the following spring.  In turn, the fields we'll be cropping in 2015 spent this season resting -- you know, reading movie magazines, catching up on their papier mache projects, generally taking it easy.  In preparation for shifting the veggie fields from cash crops to cover crops, the farm crew has been pulling out tomato stakes and string, as well as the occasional glove or hoe that disappeared in August.  Jake has the disk on the Kubota and is spending a fair amount of time driving back and forth, cutting up crop (and weed) residue and working it into the soil.  In the coming weeks, we'll be planting cover crops, and by the time we're done, you'll have learned more than you ever wanted to know about cover crops and crop rotation!
This is where the potatoes
used to be!

Finally, we got a lot of interested responses to last week's tomato stats, so we'll try to bring you some more farm numbers soon.  To tide you over, here are some farm newsletter numbers:

Number of times I've used the word "pumpkin" in this newsletter: 11
Number of newsletters that include the phrase "cover crop": 11
Number of recipes published that include tomatoes: 15
Number of times Jake has written the newsletter: 2 (? disputed)
Number of "followers" on our blog: 1

Braised red cabbage

We often go to other people's farms and marvel at the size of their vegetables.  With our relatively low fertility levels and lack of irrigation, we have been known to grow some pretty small produce at the Big Red Farm.  Most recently, we visited a farm where they were gowing cabbages, I kid you not, the size of the steering wheel in my car.  Putting aside for a moment that those folks are able to grow huge, healthy veggies without using either irrigation or chemical fertilizers, the fact of the matter is that not everyone wants a giant cabbage!  For those of you who prefer your cabbages more like the size of a baby's head, look no further than the Big Red Farm.  Our red cabbages are perfect for braising with some red wine and a local apple -- fall on a plate!  {Braised Red Cabbage}


This week we hope to have the following available from 1pm to 5pm in front of Pop Hall:
  • Beets - $2.00 lb
  • Broccoli - $2.50 lb
  • Red Cabbage - $2.00 each
  • Carrots - $3.00 lb
  • Celery - $2.50 each
  • Rainbow Chard - $2.50 bunch
  • Eggplant - $3.00 lb
  • Flowers - $5.00 bouquet
  • Garlic - $1.00 bulb
  • Kale - $2.50 bunch
  • Lettuce Mix - $2.50 bag
  • Onions - $1.50 lb
  • Sweet Peppers - $3.00 lb
  • Assorted Hot Peppers - 2/$1.00
  • Potatoes - $2.50 lb large, $3.00 lb "fancy"
  • Pumpkins (12! I used it 12 times!) - $5.00 each
  • Spinach (limited quantity) - $2.50 bag
  • Winter Squash (Acorn, Butternut, Delicata) -- $1.50 lb


The farm stand is located right in front of Pop Hall, at the top of the stairs that lead down into the Bowl. Enter campus by the main gate on Route 206 (opposite the Lawrenceville Post Office and Craven Lane) and bear right into the circle. Bear right again at the fork in the road and continue straight until you see the Farm Stand signs.

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