Farmers' Blog

Field Report

What's New?
Posted 7/3/2011 4:47am by Andre Cantelmo.
    Feels like summer around the farm, although we are not yet harvesting all of the summer veggies. New potatoes are in the share this week, mostly Red Gold with some white potatoes possible as well. Delicious! Zucchini, summer squash, cucumbers, carrots, garlic, cabbage and beans are right around the corner. Onions, eggplant, peppers, basil and sweet corn should be ready by the end of July, with melons by mid August.
   Our busy planting and seeding schedule continues. We still have two more plantings of sweet corn, second field tomato planting, several more zucchini, summer squash and cucumber seedings, fall carrots, and many fall brassicas (cabbage and broccoli family). This time last year we fought to keep crops alive in the powder that was our soil in the drought. This week we are contending with some fields that are as wet as in the spring. On balance, we like this weather for overall crop growth.
   Enjoy the weather and eat well!   Greg         

           Full Share                                Half Share

         1 tomato                                     1 tomato
         1 pt new potatoes                    1 pt new potatoes
         1 bunch scallions                      1 bunch scallions
  1 pt sugarsnaps or 1 lb broccoli        1/2 lb broccoli
        2 heads of lettuce                1 head lettuce or bunch of chard

        1 bunch of beets                      1 bunch of beets or turnips
        1 bunch of turnips       
        1 bunch of chard
        1 kohlrabi
Posted 6/25/2011 9:30pm by Andre Cantelmo.
    Our weather has been quite a roller coaster as of late. Hot and sunny between cold and rainy episodes. Sugarsnap peas are finally ready and in the share this week. Scallions are also ready and new potatoes will make it into next weeks' share. The greenhouse tomatoes look good to carry us until field tomatoes. Zucchini, summer squash and cucumbers have set fruit and will make an appearence early in July.
    The rain has delayed our planting the past several days, not to mention cultivation. We've tried to catch up on trellising and pruning our greenhouse tomatoes and tunnel cucumbers. So far our main crop of potatoes looks great and first hilling was early in the week. Rutabagas were sown mid-week and ground has been prepared for the storage carrots. Busy, busy, busy!


This weeks' share:

                  Full                                      Half
        2 heads lettuce                    1 head lettuce or 1 bunch chard
        1 tomato                                      1 tomato
        1 bunch scallions                       1 bunch scallions
        1 pint sugarsnap peas              1 pt sugarsnap peas
        1 bunch beets                             1 bunch beets or turnips
        1 bunch turnips
        1 bunch chard
        1 bunch cilantro          
Posted 6/19/2011 7:57am by Andre Cantelmo.
  On the farm we continue to plant as the harvest grows everyday. June may be the busiest month of the year with planting, harvesting and tending. Weeds are particularly fond of June and grow like, well, weeds. Some of the major plantings ahead of us are winter squash and pie pumpkins, fall carrots, brussel sprouts, storage cabbage, rutabagas, fall broccoli and cauliflower, storage turnips as well as many sequential plantings of greens, cucumbers and squash.
  For those of you who haven't enjoyed the Hakurei turnips before, you're in for a treat. They are very mild and can be eaten raw with salad or as a snack. The broccoli raab has been delicious sauteed with garlic and olive oil. Some of you may remember the Yukina Savoy from the winter share, still delicious in a salad as we have enjoyed in our home several times lately.
  We're hoping for some new potatoes next week and possibly sugarsnap peas. Strawberries look very lean and will likely not be in the share. Blueberries won't be ready until July 15 or so, but look very good. Broccoli should be available in quantity for the CSA by the end of the month. We'll soon be harvesting from two tomato houses and the other two look better than ever. While weedier than I would like, the garlic looks excellent, especially compared to last year.

  Let us hope for abundant harvests and good eating.   Greg

This weeks share:

              Full                                             Half

     1 Tomato                                      1 Tomato
     1 bunch cilantro                          1 bunch cilantro
     1 head lettuce                            1 head lettuce
     1 garlic scape                             1 garlic scape
     1 bunch beets                            1 bunch or beets OR turnips
     1 bunch turnips
     1 bunch radish

      2 choices                                         1 choice
                                Choose from:
                                 Bok Choi
                                 Swiss chard
                                 Broccoli Raab
                                 Yukina Savoy 1/2lb
                                 Arugula (limited)

Posted 6/4/2011 9:36pm by Andre Cantelmo.

Hello Heron Pond Family


This week is the beginning of the 2011 CSA season. Everyone at the farm has been working very hard to get this season started. This week we planted tomatoes and cucumbers in our new high tunnel, we finished planting the leaks and we continued to put in plantings of corn, beans and lettuce. Greg has been busy cultivating and keeping the weeds out of our crops. The garlic looks fantastic and the scapes will be coming soon. The early crops are all looking great. So far we've been able to keep pests away from the crops now we just need some warmer days to give everything the opportunity to grow.


Due to the cool, wet weather this spring the crops are off to a slow start but look good in the long run. The first few weeks of the share will be a little light, but the food should start coming in strong before to long. We lost the first greens planting to the weather, but the next one is looking good. This year there have been many reports of high fungal pressure of the strawberries. We do not spray our berries so I was worried that we might have some problems. It turns out they are doing fine and should be in the share next week. Our greenhouse tomatoes are coming along well and will be in the share soon.


This weeks share:






Two for the full share. One for the half.


Every year we all take some time to get on the same page. Pick ups get mixed up, folks don't show on there day and so on. We will all have to work together to get is right. We will have information sheets at every pick up. Please take the time to look at these sheet, see if all your information is correct. We are looking forward to a great year and are glad to have you with us!



Posted 5/27/2011 10:28am by Andre Cantelmo.

The 2011 Heron Pond Farm CSA season is about to begin! We are all really looking forward to a great season. Although the spring has dealt us a slow start, the crops we have in the ground are looking good and we expect a continuous supply of great food all year. The crew has been working hard everyday to prepare ground and plant crops. We will have a full crop report in a news letter early next week. This email will answer some frequently asked question that will make the start of the pick up season go smoothly.

When is the first pick up?

The first farm stand pick up will be Sunday June 5th. Farm stand pick ups run every day of the week. You selected your pick up day at the time of registration. If you forgot your pick up day you can go to the membership status page of the website at any time to get all the information that goes with your account.

The first Dover and Portsmouth pick ups will be Monday June 6th, and Wednesday June 8th respectively from 3:00 to 7:00 (click on town name for location info). There is a $30 one time fee for off farm pick ups. Our registration program does not let us include it at sign up. We have gone through and added it on to most bills but may have missed a few. This fee helps with site fees, trucking cost, and the extra personal for these off farm locations.

How do pick ups work?

Each location will be set up farm stand style. We do not pre-box shares with our CSA. You will be able to pick out the food you want guided by a pick up list. When you arrive you will be greeted by one of the farmers from Heron Pond. They will help you get signed in and give you a list of the food in the share that week, or it will be on the “share wall.” Feel free to ask the farmers any questions about what is going on at the farm. We try to keep everyone up to date with the goings on.

What happens if I miss my pick up?

This is why you sign in. It allows us to make arrangements for those that miss. If you are a farm stand pick up you can just come another day that same week. Off farm pick ups are bagged and left at your pick up site for 24 hr. After that time they are donated to others. If you have a need that does not fit in with this time frame please call to make arrangements.

It is summer so there will be times when you will be away for your pick up day. The best thing to do is to get a friend or family member to pick up you food that week. If this can not be done we let you get a double share once a summer. Please understand that some of the food may not be available for these make up shares.

How do I know that my share and pick up location are correct?

Please, everyone, look at your membership status. Some credit cards did not go through do to technical difficulty so you may have a balance that you don't know about. Also it is important to be sure that you and your food will be at the same location at the same time. If you are receiving this email then we have you registered. Talk to your friends. If they meant to register and it did not go through we may be able to fit them in but we start in about a week so time is running out.

We are looking forward to a great year. Enjoy the sun while it's out! See you in about a week.





Posted 4/8/2011 6:07pm by Andre Cantelmo.
On Saturday we will be at Exeter High School from 10:00 to 2:00 along with many other producers of local food and goods. Come and see us!
Posted 4/7/2011 7:36pm by Andre Cantelmo.
Soil has been turned and planting will begin soon! We'll be at full throttle for quite a while now. Greenhouse work continues but early field seeding and transplanting must also be undertaken. Corn,carrots and peas will be sown first, followed by a wide array of greens. Sometime next week we could begin transplanting beets, chard, lettuce, cilantro and bok choi. Yesterday we harvested the overwintered parsnips and they are beautiful!
Here is a rough sketch of the share:

4 lbs potatoes
1 lb parsnips
4-6 onions (they are running a little small)
2 bags of greens

Thank you all for a great winter season and we hope to see everyone this spring!

Posted 3/24/2011 5:19pm by Andre Cantelmo.
It might feel like winter this week, but the plants seem to know that spring is here. All of the overwintered greens and vegetable transplants have really grown vigorously this last week. The winter like weather has prevented us from harvesting our overwintered parsnips. However, with spinach and other greens growing well, we've decided to add another pickup in two weeks (April 9-10,11,13). That share will probably include potatoes, parsnips, spinach and other greens. We may have onions available for that share. We'll be sure to send a reminder e-mail, but it will otherwise be a normal pickup situation.

For those of you who have not yet signed up for the summer CSA, please consider doing so soon.

This weeks' share includes:

4 lbs potatoes
2 lbs carrots
8 onions

For those in the area, we'll be at the farmers market in Rollinsford this Saturday from 10-2.


Posted 3/11/2011 11:52am by Andre Cantelmo.
Still waiting for the snow to melt but we are seeing some earth! We now have three greenhouses open with a fourth to open any day. Onions, shallot, leeks, beets, chard, lettuce, choi, celeriac, several cut flowers and minor crops are now germinating. The kohlrabi in this week's share is the last from the cellar as are the parsnips. We hope that the snow will clear before the last pickup so that we can dig the overwintered bed of parsnips. The deer have taken care of any hope we had for spring kale emerging from the melting snow. As many as 16 deer had a very large salad over the last week. Even our presence in the field couldn't stifle their hunger. I guess everyone has to eat. If only they ate weeds!


This week's share:
1 bag of mesclun mix
1 bag of yukina savoy
1 bag of spinach
4 lbs potatoes
2 lbs carrots
1 lb parsnips
1 lb kohlrabi
8 onions
Posted 3/10/2011 7:27pm by Andre Cantelmo.
Come and see us at the Exeter Farmer's Market this Saturday from 10-2 at Exeter High School. We'll have lots of root veggies and several kinds of greens. In addition to veggies, you'll also find local meats, eggs, crafts, prepared foods and much more.

We also still have openings for our 2011 summer CSA. Don't miss out on a great season of vegetables, fruits and herbs!