the reason for this love of nonhuman nature is that communion
with it restores to us a level of our own human nature at which
we are still sane, free from humbug, and untouched by anxieties.”
- Alan Watts
Whats in the Family share:
Strawberries (2 baskets)
and in the Small share:
Strawberries (1 basket)
(items in the small share will be less in quantity than in the family
... and if you have an extra-fruit option:
2 baskets of strawberries plus plums, peaches or blackberries
July 29, 30, 31
Children's Mini-camp, Friday eve. to noon Sun. (curious? see details in
2004's Week 15 newsletter!)
Sat Aug 6
Permaculture workshop #2 - Design methods; ecological observation and
Sat. Sept. 24
Fall Equinox Celebration
with the Banana Slug String Band!
Sat. Oct 22
Halloween Pumpkin Pallooza
Sat. Oct 29
Permaculture workshop #3 - Polycultures & agroforestry; food forest
design and installation
Happy Fourth of July! As I walked the farm this morning, I wondered what
celebrating our independence from British colonialism 229 years ago
means as we approach another 4th of July holiday. I am convinced that
the Founding Fathers were motivated by the vast, seemingly unlimited
richness and awe-inspiring beauty of the wild and untamed countryside.
Both fear and fascination are trig-gered when we spend time in the
wilderness. I remember some of my greatest experiences (and initiations
as a teenager) were the times spent camping and hiking in remote wilderness
areas. It was then that I experienced that sense of quiet inside and "bigness" out-side
of myself. Conserving natural resources instead of exploiting them
offers this country a physically and spiritually better future than
the immediate cashing-out of our assets would. Just as it does not
seem intelligent to put the California coast at risk for a week’s
worth of crude oil, or invade our last wilderness sanctuaries in search
of a little gold, silver or oil, so it doesn’t seem intelligent
to pave over and poison the land that grows our food. I am alarmed
how much our valley, the Pajaro – one of the richest food growing
valleys in the country – is threatened more and more by development.
Wouldn't it be smart if we as a people wrote declarations of "inter-dependence," where
the land, rivers and oceans were protected from exploitation, creating
long-lasting bonds of mutual enhancement where humans are functioning
members, rather than conquering invaders. As a farmer my treaty with
the land is to listen, hear what it says, understand what it can and
cannot do and continuously improve my own shortcomings in this mutual
dance. – Tom
Field Notes from Farmer
you can see the strawberries are picking back up again, so small shares
are back in the running to receive fruit! The corn is knee high, green
beans are starting to mature for the picking, and the first tomatoes
are still, or can we say "only," 2 to 3 weeks away. The first
melons are sizing up, so all we can do now is wait. The birds ate many
of our tender little pumpkin seedlings so this means we'll have to sow
again and protect them with row covers until they have grown enough to
fend for themselves.
On the list, not in the
you may have guessed by now, farming is not an exact science. And figuring
out on a Sunday what will be ready for harvest later in the week can
sometimes be a crap shoot. Crops that look like they’ll size up
in time sometimes don’t, or the weather changes radically and lettuce
bolts. Or radishes that were small and succulent for Tuesday’s
harvest are already over-mature by Friday’s harvest for Saturday’s
boxes. We do the best we can to plant crops in succession in order to
have a steady supply of varied vegetables and fruit, but Mother Nature
(and sometimes human nature) decides to do things differently than planned.
To compensate for the occasionally unexpected, Tom will sometimes make
last-minute substitutions. In other words, if you see something on the
list which is not in your box, before you call the farm do a visa-versa
check, i.e. look to see if there is not also something in your box which
is not on the list! Last week, for example, Tuesday and Wednesday shares
got beets because the carrots were not quite big enough, and Saturday
shares got cauliflower and green beans instead of arugula and mustard
greens, as both of those leafy greens had gotten over-mature by the end
of the week. Tom will sometimes mention these last-minute changes on
the colored ‘notes’ half-sheet in the front of your checklist,
but there are times when he won’t get around to doing that, so
you need to be flexible. In the end, he will always do his best to see
you all receive a well-rounded seasonal box of produce, even if it ends
up being a little different than originally planned.
Monsanto Celebrates Farming
received an alarming email [this is Debbie] from an east coast CSA member
that was originally sent to her by people from the Center for Food Safety.
Apparently Monsanto and their Big Ag counterparts (National Corn Growers
Association, U.S. Grains Council, American Soybean Association, National
Cotton Council, and United Soybean Board) are sponsoring a 20-episode
series on PBS(!) entitled “America’s Heartland.” If
all goes according to Monsanto’s plan, these episodes will be broadcast
weekly on 300 stations across the country and will no doubt extol the
virtue of Monsanto’s preferred farming practices and products.
According to Monsanto’s own promo, “America’s Heartland ...
will celebrate our nation’s agriculture. Profiling the people,
places, and processes of today’s agribusiness [my
emphasis], the series will tap in to—and strengthen—the ties
that bind us all together: the love of our land and the respect for the
people who live on and from it, a national fascination with food, curiosity
about unfamiliar places and ways of life, and the bedrock American values
of family, hard work and the spirit of independence.” Respect my
arse!! This from a company that is regularly suing small American ‘heartland’ farmers
for patent infringement (when Round-Up Ready seed genetics are found
on a farmer’s land even though they did not put them there – see
documentary: ‘The Future of Food’ www.futureoffood.com),
and in lieu of putting them out of business, having them sign non-disclosure
documents so that they cannot talk with the public about what was done
to them. The Center for Food Safety is putting together a sign-on letter
requesting that, at the very least, PBS pulls from the series any segment
that discusses genetically engineered food without also discussing in
equal terms the many concerns the scientific, environmental and public
health communities have about this technology. This is particularly disturbing
since Monsanto owns the technology used in over 90 percent of all genetically
engineered crops that are grown in the U.S., which, in turn, produce
55 percent of Monsanto’s revenue. The stakes for Monsanto in successfully
promoting this new technology are extremely high, and the company has
shown that it will go to great lengths to promote and sell its products.
Please contact Craig Culp firstname.lastname@example.org or Ellen Kittredge email@example.com
to find out about the sign-on letter, or call them at (202) 547-9359.
from Debbies Kitchen . . . . .
. . . Have a recipe youd like to share? Contact
week an extemporaneous ‘what I’d do’ contribution – Farrell
didn’t have this week’s veggie list, but many are similar
from week to week so I thought it would still be appropriate. – Debbie
What I'd do with this week's
by member Farrell Podgorsek of San Jose
Here’s how I used my share in the last week or so. I had some
leftover items from the previous week, and I split my share with another
family so I may not have some items.
We have a salad of some sort
almost every night. Lettuce, radishes, carrots, cucumbers, grated
raw beets and celery all can go in. I try to wash the lettuce when
I come home from the market. I wrap it in paper towels or a clean tea
towel and place it in one of my refrigerator vegetable bins that I
line with the plastic bags the farm produce comes in. I use another
plastic bag to line my other produce bin. The vegetables stay nice
and fresh for a much longer time. When we run out of lettuce, or for
a change, I chop the vegetables and make a chopped salad. I like to
add some herbs or parsley to this. For a before dinner snack, cucumbers
are sliced and served with hummus. Dinner one night was Chinese Chicken
Salad, using lettuce and celery. The wonderful Morris Grassfed Beef
was on the menu twice last week. Braised Eye of Round was made into sandwiches
with sautéed onions, accompanied by Kale, blanched for a few
minutes and then sautéed with garlic, ginger and finished with
some soy sauce. Also served on the side were potatoes, cubed and roasted
with chopped garlic. Hamburgers another night were served with potato
wedges steamed, and then finished on the BBQ. Zucchini was also sliced
into wedges and BBQ'd. Broccoli was steamed and then dressed with a raspberry
vinaigrette. For lunch one day I made a tasty bulgur salad. The bulgur
was cooked with chopped onion, green garlic, leftover sautéed
kale. The bulgur was cooled and then I stirred in some of the lemon basil.
With dinner one night we also had Smashed Potatoes -
cube the potatoes, boil with a few garlic cloves, smash in the pot until
they are chunky, and stir in pesto made with the basil and garlic. YUM.
pasta dinner was enhanced with zucchini sautéed and added to a
seafood marinara sauce.
Berries are usually enjoyed
on morning cereal or yogurt.
We love to use dill. I add it to potato salads. It is also wonderful
with cucumber salad.
cucumbers. Lightly salt and drain in a colander. Stir in rice vinegar
and mirin to taste. Top with sesame seeds. [note from Debbie: I recently
found a neat product by Eden Organic: a “Seaweed
Gomasio” which is sesame seeds, seaweed and sea salt in a shaker
you can use like salt. This would be a fun substitution for plain sesame
seeds in Farrell’s salad.]
Cucumbers are also wonderful in a cool salad with rice or champagne
vinegar and chopped mint.
Potato Salad (created by my husband, Ken)
Potatoes - approx 1 lb.
Basil, marjoram, dill or any herb of choice
Garlic - 2 cloves
salt & pepper
cider vinegar, 2 to 3 tbsp.
1/2 an onion, chopped
Mayonnaise - about 1/4 C
Boil potatoes in salted water
until tender. Cool until you can handle them, Slice. Add vinegar, herbs,
garlic, onion, salt & pepper. Refrigerate
until cool. Add mayonnaise. Let sit for 1/2 hour to meld flavors. This
is more tart than creamy. I use just enough light mayonnaise to give
it a hint of creaminess.
for a link to a comprehensive listing of recipes from Live Earth Farm's
newsletters going back as far as our 1998 season! You can search for recipes
by key ingredient. Recipe site is updated weekly during the season.