2022 CSA Newsletter #6

Boy, that was some much needed rain that we got on Monday. I know a few weeks back I had mentioned that things had been going pretty good on the weather front but the hot and dry spell we just went through was a bit rough for some of the crops. There were some crops that bolted and needed to be pulled before they were supposed to be. It was a definite bummer but that is the nature of farming. The tomatoes on the other hand have absolutely loved this heat and sun. That combined with our weekly pruning has really boosted their growth. We've even seen the first of the cherry tomatoes start to ripen in the last couple of days. If this weather keeps up, my guess is that we should start seeing steady ripening in the next two weeks. Fingers crossed.

One of the great things that I thoroughly enjoy about having a farm at a college is the educational component that is woven in to all that we do. Obviously, I have the student interns throughout the season/semesters who get to learn about and see the production component of our food system in action. But I also get to have other classes from campus, area schools, community groups, international groups visit the farm throughout the year. The outside groups took a big old pause the last two summers due to Covid. This summer has been a continuation of what started in the spring. You've already read about the students from the Dominican Republic. I may have forgotten to mention that there was a group "hospitality trainers" from different institutions in Rwanda out for a visit. Last week we hosted Project LEAD for four days. They were a great group of young people from Dryden who enthusiastically helped out with various farm tasks. There are a few more groups that you'll read about scheduled for the summer.

This extended dry and heat we've been experiencing has caused a bit of a gap in some crops. As I mentioned above, there has been bolting but also some things are at a standstill in terms of growth. The moisture from yesterday was a great soaker and will hopefully jumpstart the crops. The black currants are still going strong. Having these different groups out has allowed us to mostly stay on top of the harvest but there are still plenty to be picked. The hot peppers are starting to ramp up their production. This week it'll still be the two different jalapenos and the purple cayenne but other varieties are starting to turn color and ripen. There even might be a ripe Red Devil's Tongue by week's end. That one has Chef Pat's, from Colitvare, name on it. There will be scallions and an herb choice again. As well as a random choice of shishito peppers, some okra and green tomatoes. Removing some of the fruit from the clusters of our larger tomato varieties will also aid in speeding up ripening. Due to our gap, our friends over at Main Street Farms in Cortland will be helping us out with some kale and kohlrabi.

Have a great week!

- Farmer Todd