Farmers' Blog

Field Report

What's New?
Posted 11/28/2012 8:18pm by Andre Cantelmo.

   Since the holiday we have continued to bring in the storage crops and are trying to prepare the farm for the colder weather ahead. Crops stored in unheated locations need to be housed in more temperate spots and often need washing before storage. Onions and shallots spread on benches to dry and cure are cleaned and boxed for efficient storage. We've effectively filled the root cellar and the new barn with produce. That's a lot of food!

   Over the last few weeks we've had to say goodbye to some of our seasonal crew, all good folks. This week we say goodbye to Richard Colburn, who has been with us for seven seasons. Richard came to us via UMass Amherst with ZERO knowledge of agriculture. He has since become maestro of many harvests, weedings and special projects, none so dear to his heart as heirloom tomatoes. When not expounding upon the virtues of obscure tomato varieties he often regales us with intricate details of ancient roman history and Boston Red Sox lore. Rich is headed west to the city by the bay to find new adventure in life and we wish him the best on that path.  We will miss him more than this farmer can express in words.

     We are on the every other week schedule now. For farm stand members, Sundays are self service days. We're open for you to pick up your shares and for self serve retail, but we farmers will try to take the day off. For those without a payment arrangement, this would be a great time to send in the remainder of your balance. We'll be at markets this weekend in Rollinsford at Wentworth Greenhouse, Rollin Green Nursery in Greenland and at the Armory in Somerville, MA. 

          Eat Well!    Greg

  

 

This weeks' shares:

 

                 Full Share                                                              Half Share

             4 lbs potatoes                                                           2lbs potatoes

   1 lb turnips or watermelon radish                              1 rutabaga or 1lb turnip or watermelon radish

            1 rutabaga                                                           1 head Napa cabbage or 1 bunch kale

            2 heads garlic                                                            1 head garlic

            2 leeks                                                                      1 leek

            4 onions                                                                     2 onions

         1 head napa cabbage                                                   1 bunch red radish

           1 bunch kale                                                               1 bunch turnip greens

            1 bunch red radish                                                      1 brussels sprout stalk

           1 bunch turnip greens

           1 brussels sprout stalk                    

Posted 11/5/2012 6:52am by Andre Cantelmo.

   Well, first we were in a hurry to harvest ahead of Sandy and now its the cold followed by another storm. Guess that it's just that time of year. We hope to finish up harvest of the potatoes today or tomorrow and move on to celeriac and rutabagas. From now until Thanksgiving or so we'll be getting almost all of the root crops out of the ground and into storage. We feel a bit like squirrels burying acorns for winter. In addition we still have fields to clean up to prep for cover cropping and sensitive greens to protect from the more severe cold.

    We are finally back into some nice salad greens with a great planting just coming on now across the street from the farm stand. Right now there will baby kale and yukina savoy, with spinach to follow soon. Celeriac is in the share this week. It looks pretty odd on the outside and the outer skin does need to be peeled off. The interior has an intense celery flavor that is wonderful in soups and stews, the preferred way to prepare celeriac in our house.

                                                           Enjoy, Greg

 

This weeks' share:

      2 lbs potatoes

      1 bunch beets

      1 bag salad greens

      1 bunch kale

      1 rutabaga

      1 celeriac

      1 bunch radishes

      1 brussels sprout stalk

      4 onions

      2 leeks

      6 apples

Posted 11/3/2012 6:53am by Andre Cantelmo.

Hello to all our farm friends

 

Greg and I have been trying to find ways to include all our members that would like a winter share but can't quite keep up with the amount of food in its current structure. Last week we introduced the idea of the lean and green share. It seems many of you would like to be included in something like this. We will certainly include the lean and green option in our winter offerings next year as we are not quite ready for it this season. However, Greg has come up with a way to structure a reasonable half share for $300. In the past this would have been next to impossible, but due to our increase in winter diversity Greg has developed a half share worthy of Heron Pond Farm.

 

Registration is as easy as ever. Just use the member sign up page and choose half share as your option. You can pick up at your chosen location right away. Just print out your membership conformation email and bring it with your deposit to pick up you share. Your bill will be prorated to reflect any shares you may have missed.

 

We hope you will enjoy the half share that we have put together for you this year. All of us on the farm look forward to a great winter together.

 

Andre

Posted 10/29/2012 1:22pm by Andre Cantelmo.

    I hope that all of you are safe and out of harms way. It's blowing pretty hard on the farm right now and we hope that we have secured equipment and doors well enough to avoid any unnecessary damage. We were very busy on the farm this week harvesting potatoes and continuing with cover cropping. We've harvested almost all of the round type potatoes and will tackle the fingerlings when the ground dries. The crew that wasn't involved in potato harvest has been handling the regular harvest and removing plastic mulch and tomato stakes from fields so that cover crops can be sown. We'll be very busy right through Thanksgiving with harvest of rutabaga, kohlrabi, cabbage, parsnips, carrots, celeriac, turnips, beets and storage radishes. We can normally leave leeks and brussels sprouts and some greens in the field until really cold weather sets in. Boots, gloves, waterproof gear and lots of warm beverages are needed for this work!

   For those at our Dover and Portsmouth pickups, please remember that pickups in the winter are from 3 to 6. For those who haven't already heard, the Dover pickup has been rescheduled for Thursday this week due to the weather. Let's hope that the storm leaves us all no worse for the wear!

       Greg

 

This weeks' share:

   2 lbs potatoes

   1 bunch beets

   4 onions

   2 leeks

   1 kohlrabi

   1 rutabaga

   6 apples

   1 butternut squash

   1 brussels sprout stalk

   1 bunch kale

   1 bunch parsley

Posted 10/29/2012 6:23am by Andre Cantelmo.
    Due to the impending storm we have cancelled the Dover winter CSA pickup and rescheduled it for Thursday from 3-6 at the same location. The farmstand will also be closed on both Monday and Tuesday due to the weather. We will re-open Wednesday at 9:00. The Portsmouth CSA pickup will proceed normally on Wednesday.  Thanks, Greg
Posted 10/22/2012 9:57am by Andre Cantelmo.

   Welcome to all of you as we begin this winter's CSA season! For those who are new to the CSA these messages containing the share list will also include some details about work going on at the farm and a little forecasting about what veggies are coming soon. For now let me say a few things about pickups for those who are new to the CSA. If you are a member in Dover or Portsmouth and aren't familiar with the pickup site you can go to our website and find the CSA drop down menu. There you will find maps and directions to those sites. During the winter our pickups are from 3:00 to 6:00 at these sites. At the farmstand the we open Friday through Sunday on pickup weekends. Hours right now and for several more weeks are 9:00 to 6:00 but will change to 10:00-5:00 by mid-November ( we'll post the change). Deep in the winter Sunday will be a self serve situation as the farmstand will not be staffed on that day. It is good for the sanity of the farmers!

   This Week:  Dover 10/22, Portsmouth 10/24 and Farm Stand 10/26-10/28!

    Before last weeks freeze we managed to harvest quite a few sweet and green peppers to enjoy this week and last. You will find two of those in your share this week. Most of the cauliflower is of the Romanesco type: green with spiralled points all over the head. It has a nuttier flavor than regular cauliflower and is far more interesting visually. The beets are just coming to size so they are quite tender and have nice greens. We have a beautiful crop of leeks this year and it has been great to substitute them for onions in many dishes. The brussels sprouts have had a few frosts to enhance their flavor, although some of us like them anytime! Some of the winter foods that we have offered in the past will be in the shares soon: kohlrabi, rutabaga, carrots (of course!), turnips, radishes, parsnips, shallots, celeriac and of course many different greens.   

      Enjoy, Greg

  

       This weeks' share:

       2 lbs potatoes

       2 lbs cauliflower

       6 apples

       2 butternut squash

       1 brussels sprout stalk

       4 onions

       2 leeks

       2 peppers

       1 bunch beets

       1 bunch kale

       1 bunch parsley

Posted 10/22/2012 7:38am by Andre Cantelmo.

The seasons go on! Today is the first pick up for the winter CSA in Dover with Portsmouth and the Farm Stand to follow latter in the week. If you are still looking to split a full winter share please contact me so I can update my list, we may still be able to match you up. The farm has never looked better going into a winter season. Heron Pond share-holders should see the highest diversity of winter food yet. There is still room in the winter CSA if you would like to join. Many of you have asked about a smaller share for winter. Because of the nature of the winter program, it is impossible to cut it half and have a viable share. Nevertheless, we have come up with an idea that may work and would like your feedback on it. Anna has come up with a “lean and green share.” It would be all the greens and half of the roots. The cost of this share would be higher then a true half share. We think we can put it together for around $400. We need to know what you think. Is this something that would work for those of you looking for a smaller winter share?

 

Contact us and let us know.

 

Andre and Greg

Posted 10/22/2012 6:58am by Andre Cantelmo.

Thank You CSA Members!

 

We have had a great summer season. While Greg and I have not done the numbers yet, it looks like our shareholders made the best return on their investment in quite some time. The diversity of the food in the share was up as well and of course we all got to enjoy the flavors of a good growing season.

 

Heron Pond Farm saw many benefits from our CSA program. The steady flow of capital kept us out of dept, and the steady membership allowed us to increase our product line. You all have been great for morale. In addition to the many shareholders that have sent us notes, comments, and even a few treats; the daily smiles and waves from all of you is incredibility uplifting. The most common comment we hear is “thank you for all you do.” From the bottom of the staffs hearts let me say thank you for all you do that gives what we do meaning. Together we truly are building our community through local agriculture.

 

The seasons go on! Today is the first pick up for the winter CSA in Dover with Portsmouth and farm stand pick ups coming latter in the week. If you are still looking to split a full winter share please contact me so I can update my list, we may still be able to match you up.

The farm has never looked better going into a winter season. Heron Pond share-holders should see the highest diversity of winter food yet. There is still room in the winter CSA if you would like to join. Many of you have asked about a smaller share for winter. Because of the nature of the winter program, it is impossible to cut it half and have a viable share. Nevertheless, we have come up with an idea that may work and would like your feedback on it. Anna has come up with a “lean and green share.” It would be all the greens and half of the roots. The cost of this share would be higher then a true half share. We think we can put it together for around $400. We need to know what you think. Is this something that would work for those of you looking for a smaller winter share?

 

Summer 2013 is on its way! While you are thinking about how much you loved your 2012 share, take the time to register for next summer. You can do it online now. Be sure you are in the right season when you sign up. As we did last year, there is an early bird discount for those of you that pay in full by January 15 2013. Early registrations help the farm continue to grow. It also helps us plan the following years crops. If you can't pay in full please do still register. As always we will work with anyone that needs a payment plan to enjoy all the benefits of local food.

 

Sincerely,

Your Farmers Andre and Greg

Posted 10/15/2012 6:44am by Andre Cantelmo.

    Well here we are at the last week of the summer CSA! As if to firmly mark the end of the summer season we had a freeze/frost on Friday night into Saturday morning. It was the earliest we've recorded here in five or six years, although historically just about normal. We appreciate all of your feedback and compliments on the shares this season. We always aspire to do better and need your participation to do so. The winter share begins next week for those who have signed up and there is still time to register if you have not yet. Hope to see you all this winter.  Greg

                 Full Share                                                       Half Share

      2 butternut squash                                               1 butternut squash

      4 peppers                                                            2 peppers

      4 onions                                                             2 onions

      2 leeks                                                               1 leek

      4 apples                                                             2 apples

      1 Brussels Sprout stalk                                        1 Brussels sprout stalk

      2 lbs potatoes                                                     1 lb potatoes

      1 lb carrots                                                         1/2 lb carrots

      1 lb cauliflower                                                    1/2 lb cauliflower

      1 bunch kale                                                      1 bunch kale OR 1 bag of greens

      1 bag of greens

     

Posted 10/11/2012 7:33pm by Andre Cantelmo.

     We are fast approaching the end of our summer CSA and will soon begin our winter CSA program that will carry us through the end of March. We have grown, and will continue to grow through the winter, a wide variety of salad and cooking greens, including spinach, kale, chard and asian greens. We will also have many different root crops including potatoes, carrots, celeriac and rutabagas. Brussels sprouts, cauliflower and cabbage are being harvested now and through the end of the year. Onions, shallots, garlic and leeks are in the mix of produce that will fill your winter shares. Apples from Apple Hill Farm in Concord, NH will appear in shares until late in December.

    Pickups are available on Monday in Dover, Wednesday in Portsmouth and on weekends at the farm stand in South Hampton. Visit our website at heronpondfarm.com for more information under the 'CSA' heading. We look forward to seeing you this winter.

                                  Greg