Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Big Red Farm Stand, Wednesday October 8, 1-5pm

Hello friends,

A mostly-orange pumpkin
The leaves are starting to change, the pumpkins are turning orange, and the groundhogs are getting bolder as the days get shorter and winter approaches.  Fortunately, we have Maggie the dog to cope with groundhogs, and the other bits of autumnal atmospherics are so enjoyable that we don't even mind coming to the end of the 2014 tomato season.  We'll have slicing tomatoes at the stand this week for their farewell appearance.

Many hands make light work at Village Farms
photo by Lisa Gillard Hanson
Speaking of a last hurrah for tomatoes, we couldn't believe the enormous participation in last week's big tomato harvest for Farmers Against Hunger!  Our neighboring farmer Walt of Village Farms very kindly donated about 3500 pounds of tomatoes, all picked in one short afternoon by over 100 Lawrenceville students and athletes, which will be distributed to soup kitchens and food pantries in the area.  We'd like to recognize the Girls JV soccer team, Girls Cross Country,  Freshman Field Hockey, Girls Volleyball, Freshman Girls Tennis, JV and Varsity Football, and the members of Senior Conditioning.  Well done, everyone!

Nora the sheep in a conteplative moment
photo by Vanessa Gieske
In addition to the end of tomatoes, this week marks the end of basil and okra as well.  Also, we are experiencing some quality issues with our onions, and have therefore lowered the price to $1.50 per lb.  This week we will have bagged lettuce mix instead of head lettuce (head lettuce will be back in a couple of weeks, we hope!), and there will be handspun yarn at the stand again this week, perfect for all those fall fiber projects!


Now that our tomatoes are basically done, it's kind of fun to go back over our harvest records and see how we did!  This being our second season of production, I have 2013's records, too, for comparison.  There are some differences: we planted more cherries and slicers, and fewer plums and heirlooms, as a percentage of total tomato plants, than last year; and we also found that we could grow more tomatoes than we could either pick or sell!  All good info for future planning.  In the meantime, here's a quick look at tomato production and consumption on the Big Red Farm.

2013 season 2014 season
Harvest dates 7/9 - 9/18 (11 weeks) 7/23 - 10/8 (11 Weeks)
What did we grow? 17 varieties 20 varieties
How much did we plant? 700 bed-feet 1000 bed-feet
Cherry tomatoes harvested 225 pts 250 pts
Juliet tomatoes harvested 210 qts 250 qts
Slicing tomatoes harvested 425 lbs 675 lbs
Plum tomatoes harvested 405 lbs 300 lbs
Heirloom tomatoes harvested 350 lbs 300 lbs
Tomatoes served in L'ville dining halls 70 qts cherry & Juliet tomatoes 108 qts cherry & Juliet tomatoes
118 lbs slicing tomatoes 325 lbs other tomatoes
Tomatoes served in local restaurants 29 qts cherry & Juliet tomatoes 20 qts cherry tomatoes
205 lbs other tomatoes 150 lbs other tomatoes
Tomatoes canned by community members over 100 lbs 150 lbs
Tomatoes donated to TASK 0 lbs 60 lbs
Sungolds consumed by farm baby 0 pts at least 11 pts

Risotto. It's what's for dinner.

With protein and a pretty huge amount of greens included, this risotto can be a whole meal on its own.  Wondering how to get your kids to eat chard?  Click the link for the answer you've been looking for! {Tomato, Sausage, and Swiss Chard Risotto}


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
  • Eggplant - $3.00 lb
  • Flowers - $5.00 bouquet
  • Garlic - $1.00 bulb
  • 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"
  • Rainbow Chard - $2.50 bunch
  • Slicing Tomatoes (last week for these) - $2.50 lb
  • Watermelons - $2.75 each
  • 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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