Archive for October, 2012


Last Box Pick up today!  What an amazing season for all of us.  We are thrilled, a little bit proud and greatly relieved we survived and flourished through the difficult drought of 2012.  Scott and I both feel it is the best CSA season yet for us.  We hope you feel the same.  Thank you all for sharing.  We had our goal check off list for the year and were able to succeed in reaching most.  We wanted a steady bounty of green beans and we were able to provide this.  I really wanted to grow a killer watermelon patch this year.  We harvested over 200 of these beauties throughout the season and we just ate the last one this week.  We have never grown cauliflower well in the past and even in the extreme heat of the summer were able to get a small crop that was tasty this year.  Our pepper harvest was one of the best ever and the leeks were large and flavorful.  It was a fabulous tomato year and we are happy with the varieties we choose to grow.  The reflections on our disappointments seem to be heat and drought related.  We had a terrible time with carrot germination.  Our Number 1 disappointment was that we had such a small offering of carrots this year.  We had several failed plantings as carrot seed will not germinate over 90 degrees.  We tried and 1000 of seeds were planted.  So, watch out next year!  We have the carrot beds ready and we are starting early to ensure a bountiful crop.  The peas were pretty wimpy due to the early Spring heat too.  Our vines usually tower over our heads when harvesting and this year most only grew to knee or waist height.  Again a heat problem we have no control over.  Peas like it cool and wet.  We always try to have lettuce every week and we missed a few this year due to bolting in the heat.  100’s of heads were composted weekly in the worst of the drought and heat and we are grateful for the delicious harvest we did have.  Every season has unique challenges and I feel we did well rolling with what was given to us.  The water consumption was pretty worrisome and at times overwhelming but we took it day by day.  And finally I am going to spend this winter figuring out how to properly post recipes on the blog so we will have weekly recipes with each box next season.

Here is the best part…..We keep notes on all the produce in our boxes and have weekly weigh ins.  Final weight is 226.87 pounds of food for the season not including the weight of the tomatoes, melons, flowers  or any of the extras.  This averages out to $1.49 a pound for the contents in the box.  I am sure if we included the melons and tomatoes we would be well under $1 pound for quality fresh fun produce.  Pretty amazing!

Thank You!

The last box folks is a huge one!!!!  Enjoy all of the goodies and see you next season.

what is in your super jumbo heavy amazingly full last box.

Squash-2 tasty butternuts

Potatoes-2+ pounds for everyone

Leeks-A favorite of the season in our family!

Fennel-Beautiful Bulbs.

Turnips-A combo bunch of reds and whites.

Onion-3 nice sized white beauties.

Garlic-Several heads of German hard neck.

Pac Choi-Beautiful and juicy.

Lettuce/Spinach Mix-Very sweet.

Arugula-This crop has had an amazing run this Fall.  We bagged it separately from the lettuce/spinach just in case it is a bit spicy for some of you.

Brussels Sprouts-Another great crop this Fall with nice firm sweet heads.

Collard Greens-My favorite green this year!  Love it in stir fries and as my bread “replacement” with sandwiches.  I just make a wrap like a burrito.

Rosemary-Remember to dry some for winter meals..

Read Full Post »

Box 19

We have quite the bounty out in the garden….!  Our autumnal crops are thriving.  The ground is dry again so the irrigation is running overtime but we are really pleased how this season has shaped up for all of us.  It is a time to reflect on the season as a whole.  I will have all the information in next weeks news letter as to our personal thoughts of this season and  the overall box weights for this summer.   It is pretty amazing how much food goes out of here!

We have several crops growing for the winter box shares and a few experiments too that we are working on for next Spring.  We are wintering over lettuce, spinach, leeks, and carrots.  Scott is getting all set to move the blueberries bushes and expand the production.  Our heirloom rhubarb patch we put in 2 years ago looks great and we should be ready for a nice Spring harvest.  Our 8 pear trees are 5 years old now and I think if it was not such an odd Spring this year we would have had our first big CSA harvest.  So next year we are excited to se what happens.  We have 2 sour cherry trees that should start producing next year as well. The Shiitakes we started last Fall offered up a few mushrooms this year and next year should be even better.  I have had logs produce for 11 years in the past so I am excited to see what these do for us.  Scott and are already spending time chatting in the evenings about next years garden….Crazy!

A few details….

Next week is the last box pick up of the season.  A big box to come! Lots of wonderful Autumnal treats.  Remember to bring back any extra white food boxes you have floating around at home and please take the time to write a few thoughts down with the survey too.  It is very helpful to get your feedback on the season.

Any members that special ordered turkeys for the holidays.   I will contact you when Anne the “egg lady” brings them here to our house.  She is bringing a few at a time when they reach your requested weight.  All will be here the week before thanksgiving at the latest.

For those of you signed up for the Winter Storage Box Share.  We have set the dates.  Monday November 12th and Monday December 10th.  Same time 3-6.   I will send out e-mail reminders the week before.

Bulbs just arrived too!  I will try to have them at least sorted by box pick up so we can get planting….

What is in your box

Winter Squash-Delicious!  A favorite around here at this time of year.  These will hold several weeks for you on the counter and sweeten up even more as they cure.

Sunchokes-Also know as Jerusalem Artichokes.  A nice big box.  Keep them unwashed in a ziplock bag in the fridge all winter long.  Excellent nutty flavor.  Great sliced and roasted with other root veggies, thickly chopped in soups and stews.  Also tasty thinly sliced or grated raw and added to green salads.

Dill- The herb of the week. I like to try and get a late crop of dill in every season as it is a nice flavor this time of year.  Add to salads or with baked fish.

Arugula-A great harvest.  Enjoy!

Sprouted Grains- I like it best added to hot cereal in the mornings.  Adds a great texture sprinkled on soups or salads too.

Sunflower Shoots-Place on the kitchen window sill with a dinner plate below. Keep moist.  Trim a few for a nutty flavor addition to any meal.

Pac Choi-Beautiful and juicy.

Potatoes-Everyone has a 3+ pound box.

Celeriac Root- Unique celery flavor.  Use as you would celery.  Keeps well in crisper drawer of your refrigerator.

Garlic-A German hard neck bulb.

Shiitake Mushrooms-Offered in the “extra” area.  Grab a few if you wish.


Have a great week!



Scott took a little time this week to make a few cool metal pumpkins to celebrate the season.  They are cut from big recycled industrial refuse containers. The stems are cut from old car hoods.  Each is unique and one of a kind!  We have several for sale….

Scott’s Pumpkin Patch.

Read Full Post »

Box 18

This week is Box 18….I have no idea why I wrote on the chalkboard 18 last week-everywhere else it was correct as week 17.  Sorry for the confusion.  2 more weeks to go.  Last box pick up will be Monday October 15th. Please take a look around your house if any extra white CSA boxes are hanging out and try to get them back to us by the last day.  Thanks!

We’ve been busy with getting the garden ready for winter.  Scott and Malachi worked hard getting the tomato patch cleaned out.  Not a small job. We like to get all the tomatoes off the ground and out of the garden so we do not have little volunteer tomato plants sprouting up everywhere in Spring.  We compost the tomatoes and vines separate from our “normal compost” in order to keep  the seeds out as well as the possibility of disease.  The eggplant has been cut down and the watermelon patch is cleared.  It looks pretty barren in this back areas of the garden that was such a huge producer for us all summer.  Scott will get some winter rye in this week as a “green manure” to be tilled in and replenish the soil for next year.

The City of West Baraboo drops off several loads of leaves to us each Fall and we compost them down for the garden.  When the trucks keep backing into the yard several times a day and the Mountain of leaves pile high it gets pretty overwhelming.  Scott moves them to the back of the garden with the tractor and they cook down to wonderful fluffy mulch for the garden the next year. It is worth it but I always have to have at least 1 huge freak out moment when I hear the beeping of the trucks as they start backing in the yard and wonder how we are going to deal with it all…..

We are still watering and irrigating our Fall and Winter crops as it is quite dry. We are also focused on giving all the berries bushes and fruit trees a huge drink in preparation for the winter.  The leafy greens are loving this weather and we planted one more rotation of radishes just for fun to see if they make it in time for the last box.


Sweet Potatoes-3+ pounds for everyone…..We have cured them in the warmth of the greenhouse so they are ready to eat.  Delicious.  Keep them at room temperature as they do not like to be cold.

Fennel-Beautiful!  We love the flavor of this tasty treat.  Great shaved with a tossed green salad or all on it’s own with oranges.  Adds great flavor to fish, chicken or pork chops.  I like to make a potato gratin with it as well.

Turnips-These pretty gems are back! We love to eat them raw.  The white ones are a favorite in our house.  Remember the greens are delicious too raw or lightly wilted.  Packed full of nutrients. Prepare as you would Spinach.

Arugula-The first cutting.  A spicy leafy green that loves the cooler temperatures.  We eat it on our sandwiches, in salad or wilted in soups or stir fries.  Tastes great on homemade pizza with fennel too.  Try it.

Pie Pumpkin-Cook as you would any winter squash. I made cookies last week with one and a creamy soup.  The flavor is sweet and rich.  Will hold will for several weeks on the counter.

Sage-The herb of the week.  A nice size bundle.  Dry it for the months to come.  Remember a little goes a long LONG! way.

Garlic-A few bulbs.

Cherry Tomatoes-Last pint of the season.

Paste Tomatoes-The last picking before the freeze.

Survey-We have included the 2012 Survey in everyones box.  Please take the time to fill out and return to us by the end of the season.  We love to read your thoughts, reflections and suggestions.

Scott packing the boxes.

The tomato and eggplant area of the garden all cleaned up.

This weeks project! See those tall green sunflowerish plants in the background???? Sunchokes or Jerusalem Artichokes. We will dig them for next weeks box.

Read Full Post »