CSA Newsletter #14

Happy September, folks. Even though there are a couple of weeks left of summer, there has been a noticeable shift in the weather. The nighttime temps have really started to drop and it's taking longer to warm during the day. With the days shortening, it's a definite signal that the season is slowing down a bit. The summer crops in the hoophouses are winding down some. The first planting of basil is just about done but the smaller succession planting is picking up. Last week may have been the peak for the heirloom tomatoes because there was a significant drop off in yield this week. The next step in that house is to top the tomato plants to encourage the remaining fruit to ripen. I'll give an update when that happens. The sweet peppers are starting to produce but it's a race against some disease in that house. Since I'm not going to spray any fungicide, we will carefully remove the most severely affected plants and try to clean up some of the ones that have been affected a little bit.

The crops in the greenhouse are another story. Other than some unruly tomato plants (we've fallen behind in our suckering and trellising), the yield continues to increase. I also think that our first ever lemongrass harvest is just 2-3 weeks away. In addition, the fall brassicas are loving the cooler temperatures. This weather is going to help them thrive and growth should really pick up.

It was a great first week with the interns for the fall semester. Their Monday was spent learning about the harvest for the CSA and their Wednesday was all about packing for the CSA, by getting everything that needed to be boxed, boxed. It was really nice to have enough folks around to do multiple tasks at once and it seems as if the new folks will fit nicely with the interns who are in their third and final farm internship. The strawberry plants for next year finally got finished, as well! We had to replace less than 50 of the 1200 planted and the landscape fabric we planted into is already making a difference. The paths are starting to fill with weeds, while just a few are popping up in the holes in the landscape fabric. I can't believe it's taken me this long to use landscape fabric for strawberries. I am really looking forward to the first harvest of them next year.

The CSA choice this week will continue to hold onto summer. Even though the heirlooms are slowing down, the beefsteak, cherries and sauce tomatoes are starting to pick up. I think that there will be some boxes of all red and all orange cherry tomatoes tomorrow along with the mixed boxes. Hot peppers and sweet peppers are beautiful this week and there still will be shishito and green bells and fryers. Garlic, basil, chard and kohlrabi round out this week's share.

Have a great week!

Farmer Todd